Are You Gasping for Air? (Video)

by Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D. on August 20, 2013

Are listeners hearing your breathing more than the words you’re saying in your broadcasts?  If they are, they’re missing your message.  I’ve had more than one client tell me they get emails about how noisy their breathing is.  Wouldn’t you rather get emails about how great your voice is?  Well, there’s an easy way to make this happen.

I had the pleasure of doing a video for the International Journalists’ Network. This short video covers audible intakes of air and how to get rid of them.  In just 3+ minutes you will learn how to breathe silently.  Check it out!  Also, take a look at this longer video on breathing that includes breathing exercises that will increase your breath support.

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Carol Whittington September 22, 2010 at 12:10 am

It takes a little concentration, but I was able to see a difference the first time I tried it! Anything to help sound a little better is always a good thing. Thanks for the tip!

Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D. September 22, 2010 at 2:00 pm

I bet if you practice this for a couple of weeks it will become natural. It doesn’t take much work to make some profound changes in delivery. Good for you for starting the process!

Duffy W. May 13, 2016 at 11:43 am


Additionally, and from a technical/editing perspective, if you absolutely HAVE to edit out breath sounds, don’t just chop out the empty space. That will DEFINITELY make it sound unnatural.

Silence it, or even better, gently fade it a couple times. It sounds natural without being intrusive.

While NOT a substitute for proper breathing, this is a useful editing technique for those times when you have an unfortunate lapse in respiratory discipline. ; )

Ann S. Utterback, Ph.D. May 13, 2016 at 1:44 pm

Duffy, what you say here is great advice! I, too, object to editing out breathing pauses. You’ve suggested a way to soften that. Let’s just hope those “unfortunate lapses in respiratory discipline” don’t happen too often. Improving breathing is not difficult for a younger voice. As the voice ages, it gets a bit harder.
Thanks for such a thoughtful comment!

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