I did damage to my own speaking voice some years ago when I was coaching my son’s soccer team. I will pay for that mistake for the rest of my life because I will never sing again. Considering my voice is my business, I am blessed that it did not do the same damage to my speaking voice.
What happened in my situation is that I had given two 3-hour workshops one day and then proceeded to coach a soccer game that evening. Normally, this would not be a problem. I know how to increase my volume without shouting. It is called projection and it is a wonderful technique which can eliminate the wear and tear on the vocal folds. I also teach others how to do this.
In my situation, however, I did not project my voice when the 1st goal of the game was scored by my team. We had lost every game the year before. This potential victory for my team was so thrilling that I just ‘let it rip.’ Had I not given 2 workshops earlier that day, I might not have done the damage that night.
If you find that you are suffering from chronic hoarseness or a persistent sore throat and you are not sick, do not think that it will get better on its own because it won’t.
Some professions are certainly more susceptible to vocal abuse, but anyone who uses their voice heavily throughout the day, who roots for their favorite sports team on a regular basis, or who speaks loudly to be heard in noisy environments is likely to notice a problem. One of the most common places for vocal abuse is at the club scene. Because of the loud volume of the music, people are shouting to be heard.
You can stop the abuse immediately just by learning how to place your voice properly, something the majority of the population is not doing. Certainly, I knew better when I ‘yelled’ during that game; however, the heavy usage of my voice during those two training sessions and then the additional unsupported vocal support of my soccer team was just enough abuse to do permanent damage – damage that will never to undone. Don’t let this happen to you.
Learn to place your voice correctly and I guarantee you will be amazed at the results. Not only will you have more voice, but more energy as well. Yelling saps your strength; projecting your voice does not.