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Voice Quality After a Semi-Occluded Vocal Tract Exercise With a Ventilation Mask in Contemporary Commercial Singers: Acoustic Analysis and Self-Assessments

      Summary

      Objective

      The current study aimed at investigating the immediate effects of a semi-occluded vocal tract exercise with a ventilation mask in a group of contemporary commercial singers.

      Study Design

      A randomized controlled study was carried out.

      Methods

      Thirty professional or semi-professional singers with no voice complaints were randomly divided into two groups on recruitment: an experimental group and a control group. The same warm-up exercise was performed by the experimental group with an occluded ventilation mask placed over the nose and the mouth and by the control group without the ventilation mask. Voice was recorded before and after the exercise. Acoustic and self-assessment analysis were accomplished. The acoustic parameters of the voice samples recorded before and after training were compared, as well as the parameters' variations between the experimental and the control group. Self-assessment results of the experimental and the control group were compared too.

      Results

      Significant changes after the warm-up exercise included jitter, shimmer, and singing power ratio (SPR) in the experimental group. No significant changes were recorded in the control group. Significant differences between the experimental and the control group were found for ΔShimmer and ΔSPR. Self-assessment analysis confirmed a significantly higher phonatory comfort and voice quality perception for the experimental group.

      Conclusions

      The results of the present study support the immediate advantageous effects on singing voice of a semi-occluded vocal tract exercise with a ventilation mask in terms of acoustic quality, phonatory comfort, and voice quality perception in contemporary commercial singers. Long-term effects still remain to be studied.

      Key Words

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