Vocal Performance Improved by Chiropractic

I have briefly analyzed the data from my study of whether or not chiropractic manipulation can improve or affect a vocal performance and how.  This was a pilot study with purely survey data, but it gives reason to continue investigation.  I have not finished my full report, which I hope to submit for publication, but I will give you some of the general findings.

The most significant result is the answer to the question asked by this study; does chiropractic manipulation affect vocal performance.  The answer is yes.  In fact the overall performance seemed to receive more benefit than the sum of all the other variables we were looking at.  This means that there was more benefit from manipulation than we thought about.

The areas that we took data on were, Ability to Relax, Posture, Breath Control, and Sound Production.  All areas saw improvement overall while individual results varied.  It is difficult to tease these areas apart because they are all interrelated.  The thing that I found most interesting was that sound production showed a greater improvement than most of the other variables.  I know that the nerves to the vocal anatomy come from the regions I treated, but these participants were in very good health, for the most part, without complaint, yet that anatomy performed better after manipulation.  As I said before, relaxation, breathing and posture all play a part also but I am curious if increased nerve flow played any part in that improvement.

The improved posture and relaxation are normal and proven benefits of chiropractic and so not surprising.  Though breath control did improve, it was the lowest rated improvement of all the findings.  The one anomaly in the data appears in that section, so Breath Control may be less affected than the other areas by manipulation or it may just be an anomaly that would iron out in more extensive studies.

Additionally, many of the participants commented that low back symptoms also affected their singing.  We did not include lumbar spine manipulation in this evaluation because there are no innervations directly to the vocal organs from the lumbar spine. However, balance, abdominal control and even pelvic positioning do affect the whole performance. Additional studies would be beneficial to analyze that relationship.

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2 thoughts on “Vocal Performance Improved by Chiropractic

  1. Olle, Sweden

    How dou you “know that the nerves to the vocal anatomy come from the regions I treated”? Which nerves? They are not in my anatomy book?

    Reply
  2. cmnacnud Post author

    Well, Olle, being very general I treated the cervical and thoracic spine which is where the cervical and thoracic nerve roots come from. As far as the vocal anatomy and its innervation goes here is a brief list:
    Diaphragm – Phrenic nerve (C3-5) (peripheral diaphragm Afferent from intercostal nerves
    Abdominal musculature – Intercostal nerves (T1-12)
    Supra and Infra Hyoid musculature – Ansa Cervicalis (hypoglossal nerve XII, and C1-3)
    Laryngeal Innervation (vocal folds) – Vagus Nerve and both laryngeal nerves
    SCM, Scalenes – spinal root of accessory nerve (CN XI) and C2, C3-8.

    I recognize that there are many more things that indirectly affect the voice and it’s production such as muscle balance, whole body relaxation, etc. But this study was just a pilot and so I focused on things that were easier to track back such as direct innervation and subluxation.

    Here is an excellent site that gives an overview of voice production, and what is involved. http://www.voiceproblem.org/anatomy/learning.asp

    Reply

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