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5 Easy Exercises For Neck Pain & Neck Stiffness Relief

Madhura Mohan

Posted on March 23 2021

M

ost people, when they experience pain in the body, pop a pill. It seems like people are more interested in instant/short term solution for long term problem. This is ridiculous! Neck pain in our society has increased exponentially, 2 out of 3 people are being affected by neck pain, unfortunately, in the digital era, children too are victims of neck pain. Aside from lower back pain, neck pain has become one most common condition today.

One of the most prominent places that stress gravitates towards is your neck. If you are reading this blog on your phone bending your neck down or reading on your computer screen with arms on the table and neck bent in front, I bet you can feel some tension in your neck right now?

Lean back on your chair, sit erect and then read. You must be feeling better now? So, what do you think caused you a neck pain?  

Today, I’m sharing with you all 5 simple, non-equipment neck muscle strengthening exercises. These exercises are a great way to stretch your over-active neck muscles, help remove tension, muscle knots, combat neck pain, neck stiffness, improve neck strength and flexibility.

 

HERE ARE SOME OF THE COMMON REASONS FOR NECK PAIN 

1. Looking Down at Technical Device

Whether it’s staring down at your phone for Instagram notification, watching Netflix on your tablet, or working on a laptop, you likely spend a great deal of your day looking down at some sort of technical device.

 

2. Static Posture

Using your arms and upper body and keeping your neck extended forward for intense focusing on the road while driving a car can cause neck pain.

 

3. Wrong Sleeping Posture

Sleeping in the wrong positions, especially sleeping on your stomach, with your neck twisted to one side can make your neck sore and stiff in the morning. Using very soft pillows and mattresses could also cause neck pain.

 

4. Stress

Most people, when they feel stressed or tired, have a tendency to round the back and curl the shoulders. This inevitably creates tension in the muscles of your neck, causing neck pain.

Well, these were just some of the most common reasons for neck pain.

 

Here is a simple task for you…please notice your neck stretching forward when you glance down at your device. What happens here is your weight follows the line of your gaze. When your head angles forward, you put a strain on your upper back, causing your shoulders and spine to round forward. This misalignment leads to overstretching of neck muscle to compensate for the curvature. No wonder, you end up with neck pain.

If you have understood the reason for neck pain, come on let’s head quickly to strengthen our neck muscles…

 

IT ONLY TAKES A FEW MINUTES OF YOUR DAY TO CARE FOR YOUR NECK

 

LATERAL NECK FLEXION 

  • Stand or sit in a chair, keeping your neck, shoulders and trunk straight.

  • Place your right hand on your head and gently pull it to the right until you feel the stretch in your neck and your right ear moves towards your right shoulder.

  • Hold for 10-15 seconds.

  • Tilt your head back straight. Now place your left hand on your head and gently pull it to the left until you feel the stretch in your neck.

  • Hold for 10-15 seconds.

  • Return the head to a neutral position.

Note: You should not rotate your head while tilting or raise your shoulder towards your head.

 

FLEXION / EXTENTION

  • Sit or stand with your trunk well supported, neck in anatomical position and hands held behind the neck (You can sit with the back of your head against the wall).

  • Keep your shoulder joints relaxed.

  • Gently nod your head by bringing your chin down towards your chest.

  • Hold for 5-10 seconds.

  • Go back to the neutral position.

  • Now, gently bend your neck backwards.

  • Hold for 5-10 seconds.

  • Return to the neutral position.

 

BACKWARD NECK EXTENSION   

    

  • Stand with your feet hip-distance apart, arms by your sides. 

  • Reach both hands behind your backside with hands clasped near your lower back.   

  • Roll the shoulders back, straighten the arms and lift the chest.    

  • Try to bring the hands away from the body.

  • Gently extend the neck by looking upward and bringing the head backwards.

  • Your shoulders and back should be kept stationary. 

  • Try to hold the stretch for 5-10 seconds before returning the head to a neutral position.

     

 NECK BRIDGE     

           

  • Lay on your back on the floor with your arms along the sides of your body.

  • Bend your knees and position your feet firmly on the ground, ensuring that they are hip-width apart and your spine is in a neutral position.

  • With your palms facing down, roll back on your head while lifting your spine high off the floor.

  • You’ll be balancing your weight on your toes and the top of your head while you come to the bridge position.

  • Hold for 10 seconds.

  • Gently lower your hip back to the ground.

 

USTRASANA/CAMEL POSE     

    

  • Sit on your knees with your heels pointing backwards.

  • Now, gently curve your body and bend backwards, keeping your knees and feet together.

  • Your head and hands should be hanging backwards.

  • Reach the right heel with the right hand and the left heel with the left hand.

  • Hold for 10-15 seconds.

  • Support your bodyweight equally on the legs and arms (avoid straining the body).

  • Get back to the starting position.

 

As a final word, figure out what positions are causing your neck issues and where exactly your discomfort is coming from…

Every day, take some time to commit to de-stressing practices, simple things like a soothing cup of tea, relaxing music alongside the restorative workout can work wonders to help you shake off neck pain…

 

Also read: No Equipment Shoulder Stretches For Improved Mobility 

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