JAW RELAXATION EXERCISES (2 of 6) — Vocal Exercises — American English


In this American English pronunciation video,
we’re going to go over jaw relaxation. Hello and Welcome to Rachel’s English.  Today,
we’re going to talk about ways to relax the jaw.
>>Ow.>>Yeah, that looked painful!
>>Yeah. That was painful. Many of our students have a tendency to hold
a bunch of tension in the jaw, whether as a habit from their native language, or because
they are focusing on learning a bunch of new sounds.  In American English, we want a relaxed
face and throat, and body if possible.  But today, we’re going to focus on relaxing the
jaw.  Here are a few exercises you can use before you practice or in the middle of your
practice when you feel tension creeping in. First off, you may have heard from teachers
in the past that you need to drop your jaw more.  More Jaw Drop!!  This instruction
can create tension as you work on vowel and diphthong sounds that need a bunch of space
– like AH, AW, and AI, and others.  Instead of thinking about using your muscles to hold
the jaw open, which can add tension to the face, think of releasing the jaw.  Let the
jaw drop down using gravity, rather than muscle. If you put your fingers just under your ears
and open and close your mouth, you’ll feel movement of the jaw bone, we’ll call this
spot the “jaw hinge”.  Think of releasing your jaw from back here, rather than forcing
the chin down.  By doing this, we lose the tension that can affect the sound, and we
have a fuller more open sound.  We’ll come back to the hinge.  But first, let’s start
some jaw relaxation exercises. Let’s start by just easily massaging the jaw
with your fingertips.  As you begin freeing the jaw, you may start to yawn more – awesome!
 Keep yawning!  It’s a great stretch and provides you with wonderful deep breaths that
encourage support. When you yawn, make sure you yawn both vertically and horizontally.
Really get a great stretch for the jaw, and the lips actually with that one. Now, using the heel of your hand, drag the
hand down the jaw bone on the face towards your chin, really thinking about releasing
that jaw hinge and letting the face muscles relax.>>I look silly. But it is relaxing.
>>Totally ok to look silly. It’s great, actually.>>Oh, that feels so good. Now, let’s go back to that hinge we spoke
about earlier, back here.  Allow your newly relaxed jaw to release down for a moment and
feel that space that opens up under your ear as the hinge releases down.  This is a great
pressure point on our face, by pressing in to it we can release the jaw even more.  Now,
this can feel quite painful, so don’t hurt yourself, but it will feel great when you
let go! Now, take your chin between thumb and index
finger and move the jaw up and down.>>Whoa. Oh, that’s hard.
>>Don’t hurt yourself on this one, either.>>You gotta watch your tongue!
>>It can be very difficult! Yeah, make sure your tongue’s not in the way. Really let your hand control your jaw, you’ll
feel the jaw kind of want to fight back a little bit. See if you can relax it, and just
let your hand be in control.>>Yeah, my jaw definitely does not want to
give up control.>>Yeah. So, lots, lots to work on. Now, if you haven’t felt silly already, prepare
to. And if you’re really relaxed, prepare to let a little saliva fly around.  Now,
clasp your hands together and shake your body and face, keeping that jaw released.>>I don’t know if I’m willing to do that
on camera.>>Come on Rachel.
>>Ok. Do it again? Let’s use this newly released jaw a bit and
practice on some vowel sounds, some vowel sounds that use some jaw drop. So AH and AW.
Now, let’s go from OO, which has a tight lip rounding here, OO, and move into AW OO-AW, OO-AW Now, let’s move from OO into AH: OO-AH, OO-AW You can practice going back and forth, and
this may help you hear the difference between those two sounds. All right!  Hopefully your jaw feels more
relaxed.  Remember to do this whenever you feel tension creep in as you practice and
drill, and when you’re having trouble finding the difference between vowel sounds. It may
just be that you want more space – and the best way to create space – is to release that
jaw! This video is part of a series on relaxation
and placement. If you liked this video, check out the first one on the Path of the Voice,
or the next one on Tongue Exercises and Tongue Relaxation. If you have any questions, feel
free to write a comment below. That’s it, and thanks so much for using Rachel’s
English.

94 thoughts on “JAW RELAXATION EXERCISES (2 of 6) — Vocal Exercises — American English

  1. thanks so much rachel, im from nicaragua and my english is getting better every day just i dont stop watching your videos! keep it up!!! regards

  2. hi Rachel! does it sound weird speaking city, better, pretty (like American accent) but some words like internet, center, winter (more British)? i feel that when I tend to speak "American", I start speaking so fast that sometimes even I can't understand myself… specially for my students… what can I do? thanks

  3. Love when he says "Totally okay to silly; it's great actually". Many flap Ts pronunciation – my favorite sound in English.

  4. It is an awesome video lol however, I am still quite confused about the meanings of "not use the chin to drop the jaw" and "release face muscles". Does it mean we don't use any facial muscle when we move our jaw down? Rachel, can you explain a bit more about it? 

  5. I took lots of courses and nobody told me I should drop my jaw. I just realized I do not open my mouth enough. Because it is kind of rude in Turkish language and even in English I have kept  my habit. I will try to make it more relaxed and open. Thanks for this great video.

  6. My teacher even told me that I should keep the jaw while speaking, just imagine that I have a candy in my mouth and speak. WTH.

  7. Thanks a lot!
    I have a big problem, when I'm speaking in English, I use to change my voice, I don't know why and how, but it just happens. What can I do? It's hurting my throat.

  8. when I talk I sound like a 5 year old child because I cant pronounce my words right, when I was younger I went to speech therapy, so I don't really know why I still don't pronounce words like I should, I don't kno. It kind of feels like my tongue is too big for my mouth and when I talk I just rest my tongue between the back row of my teeth. this problem really makes me insecure when I talk to new people. CAN U PLLLLZ GIVE ME SINCE ADVICE, I want to pronounce words like a teenager for once in my life !!

  9. @Rachel, when I tried to do the jaw movement with my thumb and finger, it didn't move at all. Is this an indication that my jaw and throat muscles are overloaded?

  10. You guys are amazing! I´ve been studying english for 5 years now but i was not able to get a good pronunciation untill i watched your 6 videos of Vocal Exercises. i thank you so much for what you have taught me in these videos. I´m not a guy who likes adding comments on youtobe videos but i won´t feel right if i don´t take the time just to let you know how greatful i feel for what you`ve done for me. blessing

  11. Guys you have no idea how much this has helped me. I'm in law school and this exercises have helped to stop stuttering.

  12. In 2013, Canada will again take over the Chair of the Arctic Council – 16 years after its first Chair in 1996-98.

    Chair – In which part of speech the word "Chair" used in this context

  13. I have the same problem as one commented , please help us .
    when we speak English our voice change to another voice . it is not the same tone of voice when we speak in the mother tongue , it is like we imitate someone 🙁 And how many times should we practice once or twice or ?

  14. are you a couple? you look really cute together! I find these videos really useful, I'm an actress and I'm using them before the shows. thanks.

  15. hello. I'm 29yr female. i was born with cleft palate. i got surgery at age 2. i have nasal voice and difficulty with N.L.NG.M. i feel my palate is tired when speaking. can i speak correctly with abnormal structure in my mouth??

  16. soo monotone.. Rachel.. one exercise you should try is how not to look & sound like you're reading a teleprompter while filming a YouTube video 🤦‍♀️

  17. Hello Rachel, I am interested in this video; so, I decided yo translate it to my original lenguagge. It was hard to do, but I think it is important to learn English; so, I hope everyone enjoys my translation to Spanish.
    By the way, I'm from Perú and I love your videos. It is really worthy to watch them and learn from them.

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