Sophie shares how the singing group she runs has transformed the lives of those who attend.
“The difference between now and when we started the singing-for-breathing group 9 months ago is incredible. It’s the change in confidence that’s made the biggest impact. Singing can be a scary thing, especially when you’ve never sung before, but seeing people start trusting and believing in themselves has been amazing. It’s really emotional to hear the difference in the sound! They’ve gone from telling me they can’t sing to realising that as a group their sound is amazing. For me that’s what group singing is about, the individual voices coming together to create a really powerful sound.
It’s been really heart-warming to see the friendships form across the group. The tea break is filled with chatter, laughter and even guitar lessons! In the beginning no one really spoke and now people are chatting away so much it’s impossible to get started again after the break! People meet up outwith the group too, which is brilliant!
You can see the difference the group is making to their wellbeing but hearing the extent singing was helping their physical health when I interviewed them for my PhD research really blew me away. Singing has given them a better relationship with their breath because it’s given them the tools to manage their breathlessness. This means they have more confidence going out and about, they’ve decreased medication, they’re coughing less and sleeping better. Singing has made such an impact!
It’s been a massive learning curve for me too. I’d never run a group before, so I was nervous at the beginning. We’ve all been on a journey of self-confidence together and it’s been easy because it’s such a positive and supportive group. We have so much fun, Wednesday afternoons are a highlight of my week! I’m so proud of everything the group has achieved.”