As singers, we’ve all experienced that wonderful uplifting feeling as we sing along to our favourite piece, whether it’s in the car or the shower when we think no-one can hear us or as part of a group or choir. There’s nothing quite like it!
Did you also know that singing can help you manage stress by lowering cortisol, the stress hormone? Recent studies* have shown that just 40 minutes of group singing can not only reduce stress but also enhance your immune system, improve your circulation and increase your overall feeling of well being. It’s all achieved through those deep breaths we take to control our voices resulting in increased blood flow throughout the body which in turn produces endorphins similar to those we experience when we laugh or eat chocolate. Research by a choir in Frankfurt discovered that their singers produced antibodies in the blood which enhanced their immune system
Singing together also produces two other hormones – dopamine and oxytocin. Apparently, we release dopamine when we hear music that we enjoy and it gives us that ‘shiver-down-the-spine’ experience which we’ve all felt at one time or another. Singers in choirs also produce oxytocin, sometimes called the ‘love hormone’. We release it when we hug and it increases our feelings of trust and bonding. It’s a wonderful combination and results in a feeling of friendship and togetherness when singing as part of a group.
United Reformed Church, Bluehouse Lane, Oxted
Summer Jubilee Concert