Day 10 Alexander Technique & Singing Tip: Always sing with the possibility of "yes"!

Building on the tips from the last 10 days, and the hopefully somewhat established importance of the head and neck relationship towards our overall functioning and singing, it's helpful to realize that where we nod our head "yes" occurs at the very top of your spine (the atlas vertebrae), but where we shake our head "no" occurs at the next vertebrae down your spine, the "axis" vertebrae. Try nodding your head very lightly "yes" and notice where you feel that, how high up in your spine? Now lightly shake your head "no" and what do you notice? Where do you feel that? Higher or lower? Go back and forth and see if you can notice the difference.

The Atlas vertebrae (C1) is above the Axis vertebrae (C2). The Atlas can only nod forward and back or to indicate “yes” but not turn side to side or to indicate “no”. That happens at the next vertebrae down, C2 the Axis.

The Atlas vertebrae (C1) is above the Axis vertebrae (C2). The Atlas can only nod forward and back or to indicate “yes” but not turn side to side or to indicate “no”. That happens at the next vertebrae down, C2 the Axis.

So if you're looking for freedom through the top of your spine, all the way to your head, so that you can release any downward pressure on your system and voice, make sure that you're looking for that sense of ease and release all the way up where you can nod your head "yes". It can also be a nice performance psychology reminder, that like "improv", it can be helpful to approach singing with an open-ness to finding "yes" rather than "no". Not advocating that you constantly shake your head yes! And for those performers who like to express themselves while shaking their head no, think about if that's a habit of not allowing freedom in your neck/spine all the way to the top of your head!