The THROGA Guidelines are designed to help vocalists (singers and non-singers) safely develop and balance their instrument for maximum results when practicing in the Vocal Gym. All to often, vocalists unintentionally modify an exercise in order to sound as good as possible, as fast as possible, when warming up or training. Unfortunately, this ‘quick-fix’ approach can lead to sacrificing good form and tends to reinforce negative behaviors when singing. This is no different than a runner rushing through their leg-stretches, ignoring signs of tension or discomfort, and still expecting to perform at their best. Not only does this cause inconsistent results in their performance, but the athlete also risks the possibility of injury.

Following the THROGA Guidelines below will help you build awareness and isolate the corresponding muscle groups of any given exercise for a safe and efficient training experience! After all, the more effective an exercise is, the sooner you will be able to truly benefit from it.

Maintain Tempo

The tempos or durations intended at the start of an exercise should remain constant throughout the exercise.

Maintain Volume

The volume(s) intended at the start of an exercise should remain consistent throughout the exercise.

Maintain Formant

A formant (such as ē, ī, ō, or Mm) should only be modified if it is a deliberate intention within the exercise.

Maintain A Clear Tone

Avoid any breathy or distorted vocal sounds unless it is a deliberate focus within the exercise, such as adding a ‘vocal fry’.

No Exterior Muscles

Avoid any unintentional facial movements or visible signs of tension in the neck or shoulder areas.

Minimize Vibrato

Avoid adding any intentional vibrato to an exercise unless it is a deliberate focus within the exercise.

Let Go!

Maintaining good form takes precedence over forcing a note when vocalizing. Letting go of a note, no matter how bad it may sound, will allow a vocalist to temporarily expose any lack of coordination and help target the imbalances more directly.

More details and explanations on how these guidelines will directly benefit your singing are available in the THROGA Online Course for Singers!