Neck Stretches

Helpful stretches for

neck pain or headaches:

This one is for the upper trapezius

It stretches the muscles that shrug the shoulders.  On the side you wish to stretch, place your arm behind your back.  Tilt your head to  the opposite side, and use your opposite arm to GENTLY assist with the stretch.  The weight of your arm on your head should create enough pull.  Hold 30 seconds.

This one is for the “Levator,”

a muscle that attaches the shoulder blade to the neck.

Perform this stretch as the one above, except you should turn your head toward the opposite arm pit for the stretch.  Hold 30 seconds. 

Here is another activity you can try:

 

Note the man above moves from a head forward position to a chin tuck position.   Perform this chin tuck, and then rotate your head as far as you can, first to one side, and then to the other.  Hold 3 seconds at each side. 

Now tilt your chin down toward the shoulder and hold 3 seconds. 

You can repeat this stretch to the other side. 

Another option for increasing motion of the neck is to begin with the chin tuck, and as you turn your head see-saw your chin up and down until you reach as much rotation as you are able.  End with the chin down toward the armpit. 

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