Wednesday, 11 October 2017

I take my hat off to the lady who worked her socks off !

I have a few new pupils this term and they are now settling down into the routine of lessons and practise. Two of these are a mother and daughter L and C. Mum is an asthma sufferer and this obviously impacts directly upon her breathing. I have taught a number of asthmatics in my life ranging from serious and life threatening brittle asthma to less complicated and intermittent lighter sufferers. Singing can be a real plus for this illness, we aim to combine excellent posture with open and free airways and low abdominal breathing - all of these elements help the asthmatic a good deal.

Last week I taught the first seeds of abdominal, low intake of breath to L hoping that it would be the beginning of her breathing journey. She had real difficulty in even reaching the bottom of a simple scale as her ability to control the air column was very impaired. When we breath too high in the chest we are relying upon all the parts of the airway which are most seriously impacted by asthma - so if one can slow down and lower the intake to the abdomen we almost bypass the tricky area. 

L came back yesterday and I was stunned. She could sing down a scale and have air left at the end, and this never wavered as she sang different vowels and rose in key ! She told me that she had really worked very hard to master this during the week - and clearly she had ! It was a small miracle and we were both delighted and proud of this huge achievement! It is always such a pleasure when something so important falls into place - I generally don't expect it to happen in a week however, so this was a huge milestone for her.

I tell all my pupils that learning to breathe is a 10 year journey, well maybe I am wrong........and perhaps with the added benefit of helping a physical difficulty we can move mountains if we throw everything we have at it !

I told her she claimed the prize for my 'most improved pupil of the week'. Well done that lady I take my hat off to you !

A shorter day today because it is the school half term here in Paradise, so many of the children are on holiday. The adults love their lessons so much ( Ha Ha) they want to carry on through the holiday weeks, which is great since we have much happening this term before we reach Christmas. Wednesday is my last teaching day and it also incorporates Teatime, when the stalwart ladies take an hour out and sit, drink tea, coffee, herbal stuff and even plain hot water, and eat delicious baking by E. it is a lovely part of the week and winds me down gently. Today E is not coming so we may have to make do with the drinks only ! Oh no !

My days off are quite empty this week, which is much appreciated after the last hectic week. I will have to do housework however - how inconsiderate of my young pupil weekly cleaner to be on holiday !! 

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