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Ep. 43: How Singing Can Help with COPD and Parkinson’s

” It’s a very vulnerable thing to sing. The instrument is you.”


If you’re like most adults, the only time you can be caught singing is alone in the car or in the shower. But what if I told you that done correctly, singing can help if you’ve got Parkinson’s or COPD? On today’s episode, Angelynne and I talk about the physiology of the voice, why people stop singing (or perhaps never start), and her online and in-person singing workshops for people with breathing challenges due to Parkinson’s and COPD. We also talk about current research on why singing makes such a difference, what can happen if you incorporate a singing practice, and have Angelynne guide us through some exercises YOU can do to improve, no matter your skill level.

Show notes:

True confessions: I love to sing. (Note that I didn’t say people would want to hear me singing, but singing to me is a joyful expression!) In high school I tried out for every musical, and was roundly rejected! But as an adult, I found a local singing group to join, Voices from the Heart, and it was a fabulous experience.

Even if you’re no Pavarotti, there are so many health benefits to singing that it’s worth forging ahead despite any initial embarrassment. In fact, singing can provide concrete benefits if you have Parkinson’s or other vocal or breathing challenges.

Today’s guest, Angelynne Hinson, has decades of experience as a regional soprano soloist in a wide variety of genres. She has been a member of a critically acclaimed classical vocal duo as well as an award-winning acappella jazz quartet. She has spent more than 25 years in voice instruction, rehabilitation, workshop development, and has created arts education curriculum for many regional programs.

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What’s Next?

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Cathleen Toomey

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