Coordination between posture and phonation in vocal effort behavior

Folia Phoniatr Logop. 2010;62(4):195-202. doi: 10.1159/000314264. Epub 2010 May 11.


Background: Postural correlates of vocal effort are rarely described in the literature, while they are extensively dealt with in speech therapy.

Objectives: This study aims at determining whether body movement is a side effect of vocal effort or an integral part of communication effort behavior. The answer to this question is mainly based on correlations between posture and phonation.

Method: Twenty healthy subjects participated in this study. They had to communicate with a listener under 3 conditions requiring different levels of vocal effort.

Results: The vocal parameters increased and confirmed that the subjects had made a vocal effort. The kinematic parameters (amplitude and duration of body movement) increased with vocal effort. Lastly, vocal and kinematic characteristics were significantly correlated.

Conclusion: The close correlation of posture with vocal production shows that movement is not a mere consequence of vocal effort. Posture and voice are coordinated in communication behavior, and each body segment plays its specific role in the vocal effort behavior.

MeSH terms

  • Abdomen / physiology
  • Adult
  • Biomechanical Phenomena
  • Communication
  • Electrodiagnosis
  • Female
  • Glottis / physiology
  • Head Movements / physiology
  • Humans
  • Motor Activity / physiology
  • Phonation / physiology*
  • Posture / physiology*
  • Sound Spectrography
  • Speech Acoustics
  • Task Performance and Analysis
  • Thigh / physiology
  • Time Factors
  • Voice / physiology*
  • Voice Quality / physiology
  • Young Adult