8 Best Neck Exercises To Prevent Neck Pain

Neck Range Of Motion

8 Best Neck Exercises To Prevent Neck Pain

Exercise #1: Neck Flexion

 Neck Flexion Exercise For Neck Pain

  • Exercise is performed either in sitting or standing position.
  • Bring the head forward so that the chin touches the chest and the face is looking downwards towards the floor.
  • Maintain the position for brief period and slowly bring the head to neutral position.
  • Neck flexion is assisted by contraction of neck muscles that are located in front of the neck.
  • Neck flexion at the same time stretches the muscle of the back of cervical spine.
  • Exercise helps to maintain tone of the flexor and extensor muscles.
  • The muscle tone is essential to maintain normal posture of the head and neck.
  • Repeat the exercise 10 to 15 times.

Exercise #2: Neck Extension

Neck Extension Exercise For Neck Pain

  • Exercise is performed in sitting or standing position.
  • Head is pulled and tilted backward such that the face is looking upwards towards the ceiling.
  • Maintain the optimum extension for brief period.
  • Bring the head to neutral position.
  • The neck extension movement is done slowly to prevent injury of the facet joint.
  • Movement may increase pain or initiate pain because of stretch or sprain of ligaments of the facet joint.
  • Exercise should not be continued if exercise initiates pain.
  • Repeat the exercise 10 times.
  • Stop exercise if you feel dizzy or spinning (vertigo).
  • See your primary care physician to rule out cause of dizziness and vertigo.
  • One of the causes, which may need immediate attention, is carotid artery stenosis.

Exercise #3: Rotation of the Neck

Neck Rotation Exercise For Neck Pain

  • Rotation is turning the head to right or left side. The face and nose points to right or left side.
  • Head is slowly turned from neutral position to right and left side.
  • Maintain optimum rotation position for brief period.
  • Slowly bring head in neutral position.
  • The head is now rotated to opposite side either left or right side.
  • Position of head is maintained for brief period before reversing back to neutral position.
  • Exercise is repeated 10 times on each side.
  • Again, this exercise should not be performed if there is a pain and sensation of dizziness or spinning.
  • Such symptoms suggest further investigation may be necessary.

Exercise #4: Side Tilt

 Neck Side Tilt Exercise For Neck Pain

  • Exercise is performed in sitting or standing position.
  • Head is maintained in neutral position.
  • Head is tilted to one side as far as possible. The exercise is performed while looking straight ahead.
  • Tilt the head but do not rotate the head. Bring the ear towards the shoulder.
  • Maintain the head in optimum tilt position for brief period and bring the head to neutral position.
  • Tilt involves movement of facet joint supported by ligament and tendon.
  • Presence of facet joint arthropathy, tendon rupture or ligament tear may cause mild to severe pain. Consult your physician.
  • Lateral tilt to left or right side causes compression of carotid artery resulting in symptoms dizziness and vertigo. Consult your physician.
  • Discontinue if you feel any of the above symptoms.
  • Repeat exercise 10 times on each side.

Exercise #5: Neck Retraction

Neck Retraction Exercise For Neck Pain

  • Neck is retracted forward or backward.
  • Forward retraction result in sliding of head forward and backward retraction is sliding head backward.
  • Distance of forward sliding is 3 to 4 times longer than backward sliding.
  • Muscles causing forward and backward retraction are also essential for maintaining normal posture of head.
  • Exercise and strengthening of these muscles helps in maintaining normal posture of head.
  • Forward or backward retraction is an important movement of the head to maintain horizontal position of eye while watching computer or TV screen.
  • The head is retracted forward or backward while neck is in flexion or extension position to maintain eyes at horizontal level.
  • Repeat forward and backward retraction 10 times or more.

Exercise #6: Forward Shoulder Retraction

Neck Pain Exercise: Forward Shoulder Retraction

  • Exercise is performed in sitting or standing position, while head is in neutral position.
  • Arm is flex at elbow joint and kept in rest position in front of upper abdomen.
  • Forward retraction movement is accomplished by touching hand to opposite shoulder while arm is flex at elbow joint.
  • Maintain the arm in forward retraction position for brief period and then bring the arm and shoulder in neutral position.
  • Repeat the exercise for 10 times.

Exercise #7: Posterior or Backward Shoulder Retraction

Neck Pain Exercise: Backward Shoulder Retration

  • Sit or stand straight with head in neutral position.
  • Both arms are rested on lateral side of hip.
  • Backward shoulder retraction is performed by pushing arm and shoulder backward.
  • Backward retraction is accomplished by rotating arm outward while arm is flex at elbow joint.
  • Maintain the arm in backward retraction position for brief period and then bring the arm and shoulder in neutral position.
  • Repeat the exercise for 10 times.

Exercise #8: Shoulder Shrugs

Neck Pain Exercise: Shoulder Shrugs

  • Exercise is performed in standing or sitting position.
  • Keep both upper arms in straight position on either side of the body.
  • Raise the shoulder joint upward towards head as far as possible.
  • Maintain optimum raised position for brief period.
  • Your shoulders have to rise as far up as possible. Maintain the position for brief period.
  • Bring the arm in neutral position.
  • Repeat the exercise 10 times.

Each neck exercise session consists of 10 revisions of 8 exercises. Repeat session 2 or 3 times a day. Each set should take 5 to 8 minutes.

Watch The Video Of Neck Exercises To Prevent Neck Pain

Warning:

You must discuss all these exercise with your physician and physical therapist. Most of these exercises are explained and taught during physical therapy sessions for neck pain.
Exercise should be discontinued if exercise results in pain, dizziness, vertigo, spinning or muscle spasm. Consult your physician if you experience any other abnormal symptoms.

Written, Edited or Reviewed By:

, MD, FFARCSI

Last Modified On: November 17, 2016

Pain Assist Inc.

Pramod Kerkar
  Note: Information provided is not a substitute for physician, hospital or any form of medical care. Examination and Investigation is necessary for correct diagnosis.

Symptom Checker

Slideshow:  Home Remedies, Exercises, Diet and Nutrition

Chakra's and Aura's

Yoga Information Center

Find Pain Physician

Subscribe to ePainAssist Newsletters

By clicking Submit, I agree to the ePainAssist Terms & Conditions & Privacy Policy and understand that I may opt out of ePainAssist subscriptions at any time.

Copyright © 2016 ePainAssist, All rights reserved.

DMCA.com Protection Status