Tension is a no-go in singing. It can sabotage your vocal health and freedom and it brings you lots of frustration. Starting with discomfort or even pain during singing (or speaking) and ending with less range, less resonance and overall poor sound production, one fundamental principle when working on your voice development should be releasing the unnecessary tensions.
Which tensions can be your main enemies when producing sounds?
“Avoid protruding the jaw and tightening the lips, as it often produces uncontrolled constriction around the vocal cords. Achieve a correct jaw position by bending your head back and placing a finger between the upper and lower jaw. Keep this position of the jaw as you sing. The lower jaw should be pulled backwards relative to the upper jaw. Be sure to open the mouth wider on high and low notes than on notes in the middle part of the voice.
Whilst avoiding tightening the lips, it is also important to form vowels with the tongue without altering the shape of the mouth too much. Consonants on the other hand are usually produced by narrowing the vocal tract and by tension in the lips, but as you do not stay on them for very long in singing, they do not impair singing. It is important to be able to release the tension immediately going from consonants to vowels.”