Immediate Effects of Straw Phonation in Water Exercises on Parameters of Vocal Loading in Carnatic Classical Singers

  • Usha Devadas
    Department of Speech and Hearing, Manipal College of Health Professions, Manipal Academy of Higher Education, Manipal, India
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  • Devika Vinod
    Department of Speech-Language Sciences, All India Institute of Speech and Hearing, Manasagangothri, Mysore, India
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  • Santosh Maruthy
    Address correspondence and reprint requests to Santosh Maruthy, All India Institute of Speech and Hearing, Naimisham Campus, Manasagangothri, Mysore, Karnataka, India 570006.
    Department of Speech-Language Sciences, All India Institute of Speech and Hearing, Manasagangothri, Mysore, India
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Published:December 04, 2020DOI:



      The present study aimed to investigate the effect of vocal loading and the immediate effects of straw phonation in water exercises on parameters of vocal loading in Carnatic classical singers.

      Study Design

      A within-subject pretest-posttest design.


      Twelve healthy Carnatic classical singers participated in the vocal loading experiment for 2 days, referred to as no-treatment and treatment conditions. The vocal loading task consisted of 1 hour of continuous singing in the presence of background noise. For the treatment condition, the participants followed a 10-minute straw phonation in water exercises before the vocal loading task. Acoustic, electroglottographic, and self-rated perceptual voice measures were recorded before and after the vocal loading task on both days.


      Pretest and posttest comparison of various outcome measures during no-treatment day suggested a significant increase in shimmer percent, decrease in maximum phonation duration of vowel /a/, and increase in perceived phonatory effort, perceived vocal effort, and Evaluation of Ability to Sing Easily scores. Pretest and posttest comparisons during treatment day showed a significant increase in Mean F0, Highest F0, and Lowest F0, perceived phonatory effort, and perceived vocal effort scores. However, changes in Mean F0, Highest F0, and Lowest F0 measures were small in the posttest condition compared to pretest.


      The present results suggest that vocal loading did induce changes in Carnatic classical singers' voices. However, there is no substantial evidence that straw phonation is effective in reducing the vocal loading in Carnatic classical singers. Further studies are required to corroborate the current findings.

      Key Words

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