Why we need muscles to speak English
Have you heard of muscle memory?
Perhaps you have tried to play a sport, maybe volleyball, after many years of not playing. At first, it might feel awkward. You might move too slow to return a serve or maybe you keep making a mistake when you set the ball. Soon, with practice, your speed and accuracy returns.
Or maybe you do yoga. The first time, when you start, it is easy to wobble, to fall over. With practice, your muscles become stronger and can maintain a pose.
Speaking a language is very similar! We have important muscles in our face and mouth that help us speak a language. We need to train these muscles.
Speaking English, uses different muscles to form sounds than other languages. When these muscles are under developed, you may feel your lip quiver or your cheeks deflate, or maybe you speak softly because your muscles are unsure. You need to give these muscles a proper work-out. A training for your mouth muscles!
Speak! speak to yourself or a trusted friend. Repeat what you hear on the radio or sing when you listen to music. You are creating muscle memory.
What happens if you don't have muscle memory? Besides our lips quivering or our cheeks deflating, our brains panic. Our brain might tell us, stop! you are making a mistake! you don't know these sounds, these words. Stop using them!
Build up your muscle memory, to keep your brain calm, to increase your confidence. You will also get used to the sound of your English voice, which is a good thing too!