Breathing Secrets for Flutists

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Breathing Secrets for Flutists

Most flutists are constantly working on sound production and tone as they continue their music education.  There are some breathing secrets for flutists you can learn and enjoy.  Remembering that this instrument can only play as well as it is played helps us to strive consistently.  Breathing and support of that breath is the biggest foundation a player has for producing beautiful tone. These breathing secrets for flutists will help.

There’s a definite process a body goes through as it learns to become more efficient for flute playing. At first it may seem that there’s not enough air in the room to make a nice sounding note, but after some streamlining and learning some breathing secrets for flutists, it becomes easy and super fun!

As a newbie flutist, I remember feeling dizzy every single time I’d play the flute. I thought it was just me, so I tried to pretend my eyes weren’t swirling in my head with every phrase. The good news is that eventually this dizziness did go away, but it would come back with a vengeance if I took too much time off of playing the flute. For example, if I went on vacation and then pulled my instrument out after a few weeks, I seemed to have a hard time with breathing.

As an instructor, I easily recognize why this is happening now. Too bad I didn’t understand it back then. I needed to focus on the size of my aperture and gaining the proper resistance behind the lip. I also had no idea how to use my diaphragm properly. Once I got my body parts working ‘with’ me instead of against me, things started to really shape up. I now have a nice list of breathing secrets for flutists that I share with my students on a daily basis.  Taking your flute playing to a new level isn’t too complicated when you learn the right process.

Excellent posture is essential for easy breathing.

What is excellent posture?   For a body to be effective, a straight line from the tailbone all the way to the tip of the head could be visualized.  You can try this by working on stretching or growing upward as tall as you can without bowing your back or thrusting your chest outward. Try backing up to a wall and using it as a straightener. It’s common for people to slump a little and stoop, but we know that straightening up helps everything when it comes to playing the flute.

It is still possible and necessary for a flute player to keep their body in balance while sitting just as much as it is when standing.  Always keep your head upright above your back and not dipping your chin below your shoulder level.  I like to remind flutists that they are the Queen/King… bring the flute to you instead of bending and stooping to go to the flute as you raise it to play. Once good posture is achieved it will feel comfortable and normal within time.  Try visualizing a string connected to the ceiling tied to the top of your head.  That should do the trick.  🙂

After you have achieved a habit of good posture while holding your flute, you’re ready to learn to breathe.  Yup, breathe. (as if you don’t already know how, right?)  I’ll teach you all it takes to be able to take the right kind of breath so you will be able to play like a pro!

I’ll give you some really good flute breathing exercises here at Learn Flute Online. This will get you on the top of your flute game very soon.

Confused? Leave a comment below and I will help you out.

Have any questions? Comment below and I will help you out.

Rebecca FullerRebecca Fuller
Get Flutie with us! Learn and enjoy every musical minute.

39 thoughts on “Breathing Secrets for Flutists”

  1. Hi Rebecca,
    Thanks for the tips, I am still going with your free lessons and as I am a beginner in music I have learn a lot. At the moment I also have a teacher every second week. I hope I will be able to get further lessons with you next year.
    Catalina from New Zealand

  2. Pingback: Flute sounds flat? No worries.. - Learn Flute Online: Flute Lessons for Learning Beautifully and Fast.

  3. Lisa Lovely LPA


    That was a nice read , my son plays the tuba and he might debate you on that lol but he os a big guy and certainly has a lot of air !

    I pick up my flute at the end of the week !

    Your videos were very helpful in learning how to buy a flute.


    1. Hey Lisa, haha! I know the Tuba players are usually pretty big guys – I always wondered if that’s because they need lots of air or if they need to be big enough to carry it around?! lol Glad you’re getting your flute soon. It’ll be so great! ~Rebecca

    1. Awesome! I have an entire workshop I give on ‘breathing and breath for flutists’. Make sure you’re on my email list so you can be invited to it when it begins. Thanks ~Rebecca

  4. Hi,Rebecca.Thank you for sharing.Really ! It is good and useful for me to understand the correct concept and foundation. This is very important to me. – Eddy

    1. Thanks, and you’re welcome Eddy. Glad you’re on the path to learning how to play the flute well. 🙂 ~Rebecca

  5. Hi

    I’m currently at a ok level of flute playing and only play for my own pleasure. However I’m desperate to produce a clear and more fluid tone, more seamless with a nice vibrato.
    Maybe I can send you a little snippet and you could let me know what lesson or level you feel I need to look at on your courses. I’m based in the U.K. Is this a problem?

    Many thanks


  6. rebecca this article was very helpful and you are a great teacher can you please leave info on changing octives though i sound airy trying.

    1. Hi Lilly, I”m glad you’re learning to play the flute. I’d love to teach you how to change octaves without sounding airy. Are you already taking the lessons inside the membership area here at Learn Flute Online? There are so many lessons set in perfect order for you. You’ll be great! Come on over to: so you can start today. 🙂 ~Rebecca

  7. Hello! I feel respected by your email! I play and I still love to play the flute and teach others. I’m 60 years old and probably might be late for lessons now, but I will try as far as I can, to follow you. You are a person of great heart and soul!

    1. Hi Hektor! We’re all very glad you are here learning to play the flute. You’re definitely in a great age for it – there are lots of flute-learning friends here just your age. You’re welcome- see you soon! ~Rebecca

    1. De nada- Thanks Jaime, I’m glad you are learning to play the flute. I am happy you having made it through the first free modules. I hope to see you soon in the Gold Level where the rest of the learning modules are. You’ll do so well! 🙂 Rebecca

  8. Thx for the tips Rebecca! Excellent! Love getting your emails …. They keep me motivated! My goal is to join our towns orchestra. I’m gonna do it!

    1. Oh Dar, it will be an exciting day for you to join the town orchestra. I know you can do it! I’ll help you, for sure. 🙂 Rebecca

  9. thank you so much for all of your help, and constantly sending helpful tips and links! it shows you really care for each “student” 🙂 thanks to you ive finally got the courage to try out for district band!

    1. You’re welcome, Henry. There will be more hints as you move through my program. You’ll get better and better. It’ll be great! ~ Rebecca

  10. Thanks for this valuable article – as all your articles 🙂 I do Yoga lessons , we do breath control techniques, and actually found it helping in controlling my breath while playing flute as-well. Its amazing what you can learn from different things and all is add up to improve our flute skills. Only if we are aware of it. I feel now like every thing I do with my life is some how related to the flute..even praying ! 🙂 ..

    Thanks alot Rebecca for your support. You are a good teacher.

    1. Yoga is great for flute players.. and so is running. Anything that relaxes and stretches the lungs is a very positive activity for enhancing musicianship. 🙂 Rebecca

  11. This is our God gift to get you as a good and excellent and Patient with more sincerity. Just now I am going through your basic level lessons again and again for getting thorough training.thank you Madam to give me a good opportunity.God Bless you
    Saint Mohan

  12. Thank you Rebecca for the good work you are doing. I got some odf the links you sent for me but I have not been able to open those videos please if you can tell me how to do it

    1. Hi Benjamin, thanks for the message. I’m wondering which videos you are speaking of. I’ll definitely help you. I’ll email you right now. Perhaps you forgot that you have to have registered as a student first (if you somehow skipped this process, I will help you). Then, you have to be logged in as a student in order to get to the learning modules. 🙂 -Rebecca

  13. Dear, Ms. Fuller
    Thanks for your breathing secrets! They’re really helpful, then I imagined! Thanks from your help, I have 2nd chair flute in Band!:D
    Vy Doan

  14. You are very encouraging , Rebecca, and although I have actually “scraped through” grade 8 some years ago ( yes, I passed), I wasn’t bored following your free step-by-step tuition ( still got the last unit to do!) I^m inspired by you!!….and thank you for all these valuable tips etc.
    At the moment I cannot afford to go any further after the free units, however attractive the price is just now. So if you want to “drop” me, feel free to do so. Anna from Scotland

    1. Hi Anna, I’m glad you’re here to learn. I would never drop you. Everyone who wishes to learn is completely welcome. I do this for YOU. 🙂 Rebecca

  15. Thank you for the breathing secrets! I’ve learned a lot from your free online lessons. From the end of February onwards I’m going to get lessons with a flute teacher at our local music school. Thank you for everything you teach online!
    Best regards, Veronika

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