How can you reduce your accent and improve your American English? German native speakers tend to have an oral posture characterised by a tight lip. If you pay attention to their mouths when speaking, their lips come together and they show less teeth, compared to American speaking. Watch my best impression of German curse words and see how tight the lips are:
In order to pull off a convincing German accent, you must make the jaw and lips tight. Whereas for American English quite the opposite must happen- the jaw must be lax. So developing an accent is all about CONTROL. We must allow the jaw to control the articulation/speech to sound American. How? Do these three exercises:
Exercise 1 Lips
The exaggerated smile. Lips corners stretch back fully. Next, lips corners join like a goldfish. German as well as French speakers will benefit from this exercise.
Exercise 2 Jaw
Bring the jaw on side to side and make kissing sounds on each side. This may look silly but it will loosen the jaw so you can sound more American with this one exercise. Repeat for a few minutes daily until it becomes second nature. Watch the video from 1.16.
Exercise 3 Tongue
To improve your American accent, we need full control of our tongue too. So here is an exercise for your to harness your tongue muscle. With the following exercise, you should be able to articulate ever-important sounds for American English such as the retroflex R or bunched R sounds.
For further reading related to “how to reduce your accent” or to gain more insight into developing an optimal English accent, check this article.