The Jump Module

Jumping on words starting with vowels

A small number of words start with vowels. You can jump over vowels in the same way as over consonants. However, it can be somewhat more difficult to decide what sound to re-start on. In Exercise 3 you will practice using the same technique as you used for consonants in Exercise 2.


Choose a text to read out loud and, this time, highlight or underline some of the words beginning with vowels. You don’t need to highlight all of them, but do select any words that you might normally stammer on and/or any words that are particularly important for the listener to understand the meaning of the text.

Try reading the whole text aloud in the same way as you did in reading exercise 2  …

  • Read the text out loud as one normally would when not using any technique at all.
  • When you come to a highlighted word, as soon as your mouth is in the position required to begin the first vowel STOP. (this is your pretend block) Don’t use force, don’t repeat or prolong the sound.
  • Let go of all of the muscles associated with producing the initial sound you are blocking on.
  • Work out exactly what sound you will restart on after jumping over the vowel.
  • Once you’ve worked out which sound to restart on, carry on gently, from that sound, with the rest of the word or with the next word. (Don’t repeat the vowel you pretended to block on).
  • If the vowel was part of a diphthong, you may be able to  re-start from the second sound of that diphthong.

See jumping demo video2 to check that you are doing this exercise in the correct way. Click here for the text that I was reading from in this video.

Glottal Stops

(Skip this section if it is too complicated for you—it is not essential)

If you find that you…

  • block a lot on words that begin with vowels,
  • and/or if you often produce rapid repetitions (such as u-u-u-u-u)  at the start of such words,
  • stammer more when you are trying to emphasize such words,

…then, there is a high likelihood that glottal stops are playing a role in your stammering on these words.

Whatever the case, it will be valuable for you to work through the slide-show below, which explains what glottal stops are, why people make them, and how to deal with them when they precipitate stammering.

The Jump Module