How to look after your voice when podcasting
Thinking of starting a podcast? Here’s how to make sure your voice doesn’t suffer…
So you’ve got yourself a mic and something important to say but stop right there! Before you start your podcast, read these tips from our expert audio team on how to look after your voice… they’ll help protect your throat and ensure you sound consistent and professional.
Warm up exercises
It’s wise to do a little warm up before beginning your audio recording. Humming gently and at a low level clears the airways and helps develop an even voice.
This is probably the most important thing to remember – keeping hydrated is key for extensively-used voices. Drink plenty of water and avoid alcoholic, caffeinated, sugary and very cold drinks while recording, as these can strain your voice. Keep some water to sip from, preferably in a travel cup or bottle… a wet computer is an unhappy one.
Not always easy but if you can, make sure you get a good night’s rest. Fatigue can affect the quality of your voice and tiredness hinders reading accuracy.
Posture darling, posture!
Perhaps surprisingly, good posture is important for voice production. Keep your body relaxed and stop hunching over your desk – this can both strain your neck muscles and affect the quality of your voice.
Take rests while recording
Our audio experts record for three hours a day maximum. As they record on a daily basis, this rule helps ensure no long-term damage is done to their voices. If you’re producing long audio recordings, allow for a few breaks during the day when you can give your voice a little quiet time.
Speak slowly, speak naturally
Speaking slowly is not only good for your voice but your listener will thank you for it too, as the content of what you say will be easier to understand. Take advantage of natural breaks in the content by pausing and taking a breath, rather than speaking in long sentences without a break. This avoids you running out of breath and gasping for air – it’s not good for your voice and can also be uncomfortable to listen to. Likewise, make sure you’re not speaking unnaturally loud as you’re straining to be heard over any background noise. Having a good quality microphone and audio set-up can help you here.
Dealing with a tired voice or sore throat
If your voice is tired (it may sound hoarse or feel dry or tense) or you’re generally unwell, take a rest. If you’ve got a sore throat or an infection, take some time off from the project until you’re properly better. It’s unadvisable to use sweets or medication just so you can plough on through the recording. Just get some medical attention, the podcast can wait!
Smoking and drinking alcohol excessively are key irritant for our throats. Smoking damages vocal chords so it’s best to cut down or stop. Some foods may also increase mucus. As this varies from person to person, try to be aware which foods cause problems, and avoid eating them when recording. If you’re very mucusy, steam inhalation can thin out trapped mucus and relieve your throat.
On that note…we hope these tips help you create an enjoyable audio experience for you and your listeners!
A2i produces audio transcriptions, podcasts and other accessible formats for a wide variety of customers including universities, publishers and government organisations. If you want further information about our audio or other services, please get in touch.