According to Michael Jonesco, a sport medicine physician, the main reason why people suffer from neck pain is their desk job, because it makes the shoulders bend and protract. As a result of that, they create a slumped position and after a while, this leads to both hypertension of the neck and tightened chest. In this article we will present you seven expert-approved stretches which will help you prevent this.
- Chicken Wing
To perform the following stretch, you need to stand with your feet apart and place your hands behind your back, holding your right wrist with your left hand. After that, use your left hand to pull the right one to your left low back. In order to extend the stretch, you should lower the right part of your head toward the shoulder. Hold like this for 30 seconds and then change sides. According to Jonesco, this move will help you stretch both sides of your neck and relieve the tension.
- Corner Stretch
These exercises requires to turn with your face to certain corner of your room and to stand with your feet apart. Your palms should be placed on both sides of the corner with the elbows at shoulder height.
After that, you should bend toward the wall until you feel a stretch. Make sure to repeat this stretch 2 or 3 times, for 30 seconds. Your upper back and chest will definitely benefit from this stretch. However, make sure you avoid it if you have some shoulder dislocations.
- Levator Scapula Stretch
In order to perform this stretch, you need to stand in front of a wall and place your left elbow against it, above the shoulder level. To stretch the levator scapula muscle, you need to contract the wall with your palm. Next, turn your head on the left side while lowering your chin to the right shoulder. Hold this position for half a minute. As Jonesco explains, this particular muscle in one of the most problematic muscles in our body because it causes severe neck pain and it is pretty difficult to heal. This is why you should prevent such painful condition, tone and stretch your muscles on a regular basis.
- Standing Neck Stretch
This stretch requires standing with your feet at shoulder width apart from each other. After that, you should bend your knees while holding some light weight in your left hand and lower your head on the right side, bringing the right side of your head to your right shoulder. Furthermore, you should bring the chin toward the floor in order to stretch more.
Hold this position for 10 to 20 secodns and then switch sides. According to Tricia Brouk, a personal trainer, this particular stretch activates the major muscles thart release the neck tension.
- Passive Neck Stretch
In order to perform this exercise, you should start in a lying position and place a rolled-up towel below your neck. In order to stretch your neck, you should tip your chin backwards. Moreover, this stretch will also help you relax the little muscles on both sides of the neck that tense when smiling.
- Nose Circles
A yoga teacher, Sany Pradas suggests you to start in a straight position, with straight neck, relaxed shoulders and neutral chin. Next, you should lower the chin toward the chest and turn the right side of your head to your right shoulder.
Put focus on the tip of your nose and perform ten circles with your nose on one side and then on the other. You should perform small and slow movements, and once you are finished with the one side, center your head and then continue with the opposite side.
- Neck Turns
First of all, you need to inhale deeply and then as you exhale, turn the head to the left shoulder. While doing the next inhale, you should turn your head to center, and then turn it to look over the right shoulder while the next exhale. After that, turn it back to center again. Make sure to perform 3 to 4 rounds. According to Andrew Keaveney, a yoga teacher, people should definitely perform this stretch as it will help them activate the natural range of motions in the neck, thus providing an easy and free feeling.