which is also generally well documented.
- It improves posture, breathing and lung function (see research of the Sidney De Haan Reseach Centre for Music & Health)
- It strengthens the immune systems (see research of University of Frankfurt).
- People fall ill less, leading to a reduction in medication and visits to doctors and hospitals.
- Singing improves mood, relieves depression and isolation, reduces stress levels, which often come with long term illness or old age. The experience of group singing is unifying and uplifting. Many of our group members live in isolation, they look forward all week to our meetings. They form supportive friendships, talk and laugh together, have fun. The tea breaks are an important part of our meetings, and we regularly have lunch together and meet for other social events.
- In a scan all areas of the brain light up while singing – physical evidence for the stimulating effect of singing.
- Singing helps to boost confidence through all the above mentioned effects, supporting people in coping with their health problems and resulting social difficulties in daily life.
Jay Eveans, COPD Rehabilitation Course, Brighton General Hospital
Exercise has been shown to improve the quality of life i.e. the amount patients can do who have long term respiratory problems; however it does not directly affect lung function. There is now emerging evidence and it is still being researched that singing can improve a patients lung function directly. Singing can improve breath control and help someone to use their diaphragm more efficiently, this is important with someone who has a respiratory disease to help with breathlessness management and improve the amount they are able to do. The diaphragm does about 80% of the breathing work, so if it is not used properly it can alone affect someone's ability to breathe well and lead to breathlessness and a reduced level of activity as a result. Singing also can promote a feeling of well-being which is also important when dealing with a long term respiratory condition.