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What is the best way to practice rolled r. Especially if you have failed at it for many years?

My tongue does not flutter, but I am not giving up. I guess I need to know what the physical sensation is supposed to be, exactly. The alveolar trill continues to elude me.
Thanks

For learning: Italian
Base language: English
Category: Language

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    Hi;
    I am Spanish and understand the difficulties that you may have since I have heard many foreigners talking Spanish. A couple of things:
    1 there are children in Spain who cannot pronounce rolled r, that is because of a physical problem on the way their tongue developed. So, some people cannot pronounce it.sometimes it is genetic
    2- children learn to say correctly trying to emulate the sound of a motorbike. We say runrunrunrunrun

    3. if you add ths sound d before the r , it helps a lot. say drake, drums.... then imagine that there is a d before any rolled r. It sounds very similar.

    Hope to have helped a little

    cheers

     

    This is what I heard and repeated as a child, as many other Italians did:
    Trentatre trentini passarono per Trento, tutti e trentatre
    trotterellando.

     

    I actually achieved it in a weird way, which was trilling my lips and uvula at the same time. The buzzing helped the rolled R kick in. Once learns such wonderful stuff at uni.

    Another way of trying to get a rolled R is to start with the word "heda". Repeat it and slowly relax the "d" until it just flaps. Then take out the vowels and make the H a puff of air. Once you're used to making the hrrr sound, take out the H. You do need a puff of air in the beginning to get the sound going.

     

    I guess you're more likely to get useful advice on this matter by a non native speaker like Peachey. In fact, for me and many other native speakers it would be difficult to explain how we do it, as it isn't a conscious effort. Moreover, as Emarbe points out for Spanish speakers, there are a number of Italians who don't pronounce the rolled r correctly and substitute it with a /v/ (called "erre moscia") or a uvular r instead, which sounds like a bajaj or tuk-tuk engine - if you're familiar with Southeast Asia. :-)

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