Instead of focusing on the intervallic distance the bass part travels between roots of chords, voice leading first inversion triads requires focusing on the doubling or voicing of the chord itself. When approaching or leaving a first inversion chord, move as smoothly as possible while avoiding objectionable parallels, spacing errors, and melodic errors.

### Subsection26.8.1Voicing a First Inversion Chord

In contrast to the doubling rule for root position chords (i.e., “double the bass”), do not double the bass note for first inversion triads. Instead, double the root or fifth, depending on which can be approached and left most smoothly.

If the 3rd of a first inversion is doubled, it will be in one of the following situations:

1. Diminished triads in first inversion—always double the third (the bass), not the root or fifth

2. Consecutive first inversion chords—alternate between doubling the third and not doubling the third

3. Approached in opposite direction in both parts

Note that you should never double the third of the V chord because it is the leading tone ($$\hat{7}$$ ).