Presentation Plus

How to... sound good

Your voice

It's important to warm up before sport - it's the same before a presentation!


You improve your intonation - so people don't fall asleep when you're talking.

You improve your articulation - so people can understand you!

You improve the volume - so people can hear you!

If you improve the way you speak it will make a huge difference to how the audience reacts to your presentation.

Method No time?

Humming is probably the fastest and easiest way to improve the quality of your voice. So if you have no time - hum familiar tunes loudly for about 5 minutes before your presentation. Do this quietly at first, then more and more loudly.

Just before you go on: breathe deeply and slowly to warm up your body, hum a song loudly to warm up your voice.

Improve intonation and volume
Method More time?

Here are some different ways you can improve your voice quality.

  • Start humming a familiar song - for example Happy Birthday with your mouth closed. Progressively hum louder.

  • Then open your mouth wide and relax your jaw so that the humming sound is coming more from your nose, rather than your mouth. Keep humming, not singing, and concentrate on relaxing your jaw.

  • Increase your volume until you can feel your sinuses vibrating and continue humming for about 5 minutes.

  • Practise for 5 minutes every day for a week, and you will notice a remarkable difference in the quality and control of your voice.

ExercisesAnother amplification exercise

Repeat these sounds to improve the amplification of your voice. Repeat each word separately for a few seconds, then repeat again together.

“MEE” “MAY” “MAH” “MOH” “MOO" "MY"

To improve your articulation
ExercisesConsonants Exercise

Repeat the sounds of the letters in each pair below 5 or 6 times. Really exaggerate the movement of your jaw, lips, and tongue.

  • B / P (buh/puh) Place your open palm a few inches from your mouth and notice the puff of air you feel with the “puh” sound.

  • C / G (kuh/guh) Notice how the position of your jaw changes.

  • D / T (duh/tuh) Your jaw position should change for each of these.

  • F / V Do you place your teeth on your lips differently for these two?

  • M / N Your mouth should be closed with lips together on “M” and open with your tongue against the back of your teeth on “N”.

  • S / Z Notice the different vibration for these two.

ExercisesWord combinations

Again, the idea is to completely exaggerate and over-enunciate the words during the warm up.

Repeat each, increasing your speed, until you cannot go any faster.

Now you're really ready - good luck!
Giving a structure to your talk (next page)How to... look good (previous page)
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