{{ (view.userParams.hasLive) ? 'Browse Classes' : 'TRY IT FREE' }}

Why Does My Voice Crack When I'm Singing?

Have you experienced voice cracks when singing? You’re not alone – it’s a common challenge, but one that can be fixed with proper warm-ups. Read on for helpful advice from online voice teacher Emmanuel N...

Whether you are a beginner or an advanced singer, your voice can crack. This is usually due to the lack of a good vocal warm-up, but sometimes it is also due to your vocal cords not being used for singing a certain note/run/riff/etc. If you’re a beginner please allow me to quickly explain said statement:

– Vocal warm-ups are necessary to help your “cold” vocal cords “warm” up so that they’re more flexible instead of being tight and firm – which means less control.

– When you’re hitting a note you don’t hit that often, your vocal cords are not used to moving that way to produce said note. The more you practice, the more you get used to it and the less your voice will crack.

Vocal Warm-Ups

Vocal warm-ups are necessary before singing so that your vocal cords are nice and flexible. Always do warm-ups, especially in the morning, so that you can sing to your full potential – never go all out right away or else you will strain your voice. We’ve all heard or seen people who do the “me-me-me-me’s” or “do-re-mi’s” when warming up before a performance. Those are one type of vocal warm-ups, chromatic scales, which is basically going up a scale then down the scale (going up higher and then going lower). Vocal warm-ups can be almost anything you want, depending on the types of songs you’re going to sing.

My Own Warm-Ups

I have a couple of vocal warm-ups that I do that help me much more than chromatic scales. One warm-up is singing along to songs I listen to but in a range I’m more comfortable with. For example, if I am singing to “We Belong Together” by Mariah Carey, I sing it in a lower pitch (i.e. “male version”) because singing lower notes is very comfortable for me. Also, as a bonus, I don’t go all out and hit all the runs or melismas (the “fancy” stuff the singer does toward the end) when I am warming up so that my voice can ease in. A second warm-up I do is really simple: Create a playlist of songs you love singing to and arrange them from easiest to sing to most difficult to sing. When your voice is all warmed up, start the playlist. Sing along to every song and by the time the difficult songs come up, your voice should be very well warmed up.

But What If I Did All the Warm Ups and My Voice STILL Cracks?

This is perfectly normal, no need to fret. If your voice cracks just keep practicing until your vocal cords get used to singing a certain song or part of a song. Usually, if your voices cracks when singing it’s due to the following:

– Lack of warm-ups

– Lack of control (usually when trying to sustain notes — belting)

– Singing outside our range (notes lower or higher than our vocal range)

– Anxiety or nervousness

– Too much strain

We covered the warm-ups, now it’s time for the others.

Lack Of Control

Lack of control in belting means your voice isn’t able to hold a note. Belting relies heavily on your ability to control your voice and hold the note without it shaking, going flat/sharp, or your voice cracking.

Singing Outside Your Range

We all have unique vocal ranges – some of us can sing only one octave, others up to six octaves. We can train and our vocal ranges can expand, but it takes time. Until then, our voice tends to crack whenever we sing outside our vocal range. If we try hitting a high note or low note that we usually cannot sing comfortably then most likely our voice will crack.

Anxiety

This one is simple. When we are nervous or anxious our vocal cords tend to tense up and our control level shoots down, leading to lots of voice cracks when singing.

Too Much Strain

Another simple one. When we are singing and we try too hard, we tend to cause stress and strain on our vocal cords. This one is a bit more dangerous because not only will our voices crack more often but we can cause damage if we are pushing our vocal cords beyond their limit. NEVER force out notes. NEVER force yourself to hit high or low notes. And NEVER force yourself to hold a note.

How Do I Get Help With This?

Now you know what causes cracks, but how do you get help with your voice cracking? Simple, hire me as your tutor and I’ll help strengthen your vocal cords.

Emmanuel Noriega

About the Author: Emmanuel M. teaches singing and songwriting online, and is a graduate of California State University Fullerton. Learn more about Emmanuel here!

 

 

 

 

Comments

kk

January 02, 2016 at 11:47am

I think most people can at least sing more than just one octave. What prevents a higher range can be acid reflux .

uche

June 25, 2016 at 10:23am

Nice article... i liked the part where he talked about anxiety and placing too much strain on the voice. Placing too much strain on the voice without the proper training is very bad and should be avoided at all cost

Comments are closed

Need help learning Singing?

Try one of our most popular online Singing classes for free

Choosing the Best Songs to Sing for Your Voice
Singers should be prepared to perform in a variety of settings. This online singing class will help you determine the types of songs that are appropriate for different occasions. Your instructor will also cover a few songs that every singer should know. Join in to find out the best songs to sing for your voice, and take your vocal training to the next level.
Crescendos, Decrescendos, & Dynamics in Music
This online singing class will help you make your songs stand out! Utilizing dynamics in music with crescendos and decrescendos will help you personalize even the most traditional songs and allow you to express yourself more. You’ll also receive homework and feedback from an expert instructor to further your vocal training.
Breathing Exercises for Singing & Vocal Health
Two things in singing are non-negotiable: breath support and jaw placement. This online singing class will teach you both! You’ll learn breathing exercises for singing as well as proper jaw placement. Your instructor will even discuss diet for singers and the impact it can have on vocal health. A little homework will give you even more vocal training so you can build on a solid foundation of singing skills.
Proper Breathing Techniques for Singers
You can’t be a great singer without proper breathing technique! In these online singing classes, you’ll learn to master your breath so you can sing like a pro. Join in to practice with other students at your level, and then apply what you’ve learned in some vocalizations.
How to Sing Harmony & Other Singing Tips
Singing can be done alone, but it’s more fun with others! This group singing class will show you how to sing harmony confidently with other vocalists. The vocal training you’ll receive will help you understand how harmonies work as well. Choir singers, band members, and duet singers can all benefit from these vital singing tips!
Learning to Sing - How to Find Your Voice
The voice is an instrument too! Learn how to use yours in these beginner singing classes. Your instructor will teach you how your voice works as you start exploring your unique sound. You’ll be impressed with how much you progress and improve each week as you learn new concepts and gain experience in singing.
Must Know Tips to Help You Sing on Pitch
Your voice is unique to you, and this class will help you understand how to improve your special sound. You’ll explore your chest and head voice. You’ll also learn several techniques and exercises to improve tone. By the end of this class you’ll have a strong base from which to build upon.
Secrets to Improve Your Voice
Learn how small changes in your singing technique can have a huge impact on your vocal sound! In this fun, supportive, and helpful online singing class, you’ll learn proper breathing techniques, vocal placement, and more to instantly improve your singing voice. This is an interactive class, so have your headphones ready and be sure to log in for your class in a place that is quiet, free of distractions, and somewhere you feel comfortable singing along (if you'd like!).