Updated: Oct 23
Learning how to keep your soft palate raised will transform your singing.
First, try sniffing. Take 3 short, sharp sniffs and concentrate on what you can feel happening at the back of your nose. You'll most likely feel a slight tightening-relaxing sensation on each inhalation. You may also feel those 3 bursts of air on the flesh. If so, you've identified your soft palate. (See "How to find your soft palate")
Now try a long, slow sniff and focus on where you feel the incoming air "arriving". Try to keep your tongue in a relaxed position, just lying in the bottom of your mouth, with the tip just overlapping your bottom teeth.
Next, try flaring your nostrils wide as you sniff slowly in. At this point, you might start to feel a sensation of "opening" at the back of your nose and throat.
Now do a "secret" yawn. This is what we do when we don't want to reveal the fact we're yawning (think boring class/lecture, but you don't want to show it because the teacher is going to be marking the assessment you've just submitted!)
You should feel a strong stretch upwards in that soft tissue where you feel the air "arriving". That's your soft palate rising up, and creating your own personal mouth-cathedral! You might find the sensations to be a bit elusive at first, but keep playing with it and you'll soon be able to start controlling the muscle.