Pronunciation: I cannot roll the "r's" very well--any tips from anyone out there?
Hello--I cannot roll the "r's: when trying to pronounce certain words. I have tried the "motorboat" trick, the "purr like a cat", even trying to just take two words like "por carretera" and repeating them over and over.
Any tips from anyone out there?
This is how I see it:
If you "grrr", your tongue does not vibrate against the top of your mouth. Your tongue is stiff. We need the tongue to move and vibrate against the top of your mouth f you want to pronounce the "rrrr" sound.
It's difficult to explain, but I hope it helps.
We have a few previous threads on this and it is also described in our Reference articles on pronouncing Spanish letters if you care to research.
Someone gave me a link to a fantastic site once on pronouncing the Spanish alphabet. It showed diagrams of where the tongue was placed, the flow of your breath and showed the tongue moving as you heard the letter pronounced. I don't have a link to that site any more, but it is out there if you like googling.
I learned to "roll/trill" the r sound while I was studying Italian from a linguistics expert. The latino rolled r uses an entirely different tongue position than that used to make the English r. To learn to roll the r don't think of the sound as that of an r but think of it as a rapidly pronounced double "d" or double "t" as in the words:
Eddie or Betty.
Try saying Eddie & Betty real fast over and over and you should be able to begin to make the trill r sound. Once you get it, keep practicing it and you will get good at it. It took me about three weeks and a fair amount of practice to add this sound to my speech.
A book I have "Alpha teach yourself spanish in 24 hours" says to say David. Where the tongue is on D is where you need to be. Now just blow air. DDDDDDDavid. Then do it with an r sound. I have trouble with it but it's better than before.