A broadcaster who is doing play-by-play for high school sports was told by a mentor to work on his pacing and energy. He asked me how to go about doing that.
If you have ever been told that you need to work on your delivery and/or your energy, here are two quick tips for you.
1. Read children’s books
One great way to hone your delivery, especially your inflections, is to read children’s books out loud. They are written in short, simple sentences with lots of adjectives – just like your play-by-play should be.
Harold and the Purple Crayon is a great one for this purpose. Read the books with the same animation you would use if reading aloud to a child. You’ll develop a feel for pacing, pausing and emphasis that will work for you on air as well.
2. Let your enjoyment show
Some broadcasters struggle to sound excited without being over the top.
The best way to increase your energy is to let your love for sports and your love for broadcasting come out in your delivery. When someone gives you a surprise gift, you use a different voice than you would if you were telling someone that their dog died. Some broadcasters get too caught up in trying to sound “professional.”
Screw professional. Sound personable. And smile when you speak. You can hear a smile on the air.