Play around with English tongue twisters

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Red Lorry, Yellow Lorry.
Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.

Tongue twisters and nursery rhymes make such wonderful vocal exercises to loosen your stiff tongue. They have long been used by actors, politicians, and speakers to help them speak more clearly because they’re just that effective.

In a vocal training class I attended, we’d recite several tongue twisters in order to feel the “r'” and “l” sounds roll out of our mouths. Saying your vowels, like eeeaaauuu, and ooo, aloud continuously can help make your voice come out strong and pure.

Try this playful technique before your big presentation. Do it in the car or anywhere private where nobody can hear you. Remember, it must be done out loud, because that’s where the magic is.

Here are some more tongue twisters you can do. Click the ‘play’ button under each tongue twister to hear me say them out loud:

Test out your /t/ sounds:

Two tiny tigers take two taxis to town

Give this /thr/ sound a go!

He threw three free throws

And before finishing off, let’s all say this out loud:

Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers
A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked
If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers
Where’s the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?

Do you like how crisp you sounded or did you struggle just a bit? If you tripped over your words, stop and start again. You can have lots of fun by looking out for tongue twisters on the web and saying them out loud while driving!

Do you have other techniques to warm up your voice before your speech?

PS: I once caught a local celebrity practising her speech out loud in the restroom! She thought nobody was there. Proves that even the pros rehearse loudly, too!


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Hi there!

We’re Azimah, Amnah and Aisya from Malaysia. We created My English Matters as an online platform to help people improve their English.

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