Benefits of Singing
When I’m lonely I sing
When I’m tired I sing
When I’m feeling sad or depressed I sing
When I’m confused I sing
When I’m happy I sing
When I’m inspired I sing
When I’m uninspired I sing
When I’m in pain I sing
When I feel angry I sing
When I feel weak and scared I sing
When I pray I sing
When I feel sensual and sexy I sing
When I feel powerful I sing
When I’m heart broken I sing
When I’m in love I sing
The act of singing is a simple and direct way to express and release feelings and gain more intimacy with oneself. It provides comfort and healing to the body heart mind and spirit. One can sing in the shower, in the car, in nature, in bed, in a studio, in a chair, on a walk, in a group or solo. There is no mistake that in some cultures everyone sings every day as part of their daily activities or that all religions and spiritual paths have singing and/or chanting as part of their practice. Singing and sounding connects us to our depths and is life force itself.
Research into the health benefits of singing
Due to advances in neurological science, we now have a growing body of scientific evidence explaining what community singers have always known, that singing is good for us! The Sidney de Haan Centre for Research, which is part of Canterbury University, has been researching into the health benefits of singing for more than a decade. They are interested in the World Health Organization’s definition of health (WHO, 1946) as ‘a state of complete physical, mental and social wellbeing and not merely an absence of illness or infirmity.’ Professor Clift from the Institute writes that, “Just as walking is now prescribed, the benefits of singing for health are slowly being rediscovered by health practitioners.”
Singing exercises and energizes the body by increasing blood circulation and oxygenation. It is aerobic and works the major muscle groups in the torso. Singing is a natural mood elevator. It causes the brain to release endorphins and oxytocin the “feel good” hormones. The vibrations in the throat vibrates and vitalizes the whole body bringing a sense of well being and decreasing physical and psychological pain.
Singing, when done in a group, creates a sense of community and belonging. One can feel lonely and apart when entering a group singing event and leave feeling whole, connected and part of something rich, nourishing and profound…having gained a renewed sense of self-confidence knowing ones own voice matters in the fabric of the whole.
How magical it is when each individual’s own unique voice vibrates and blends with that of the other singers, creating a swirling field of lush sound beauty that speaks to the heart and connects us as human beings dissolving perceived walls of separateness…harmonies in the singing creating harmony in the being and the group.