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5 Simple Neck Exercises

A stiff neck can impact all daily activities - use these simple exercises to relax muscles and relieve pain.

Whether you’re suffering from a stick neck, are trying to get rid of that annoying crick or just want to loosen your muscles after a long day, these 5 simple neck exercises will do the trick. Don’t resort to painful and potentially dangerous neck moves – follow these examples to relieve neck pain, soreness and stiffness without making the problem worse.

Neck Rotation

One of the simplest yet most effective neck exercises is a neck rotation. Sit or stand up with your torso straight, and hang your head toward the floor. Rotate your head slowly in a circle around your neck, and when you reach the starting point again, reverse directions and repeat. You can perform several repetitions of this exercise, but take breaks in between to relieve tension.

Side Tilts

From a sitting or standing position, tip your head to one side and hold it there. Don’t let it drop all the way to your shoulder; you shouldn’t feel strain on the other side of your neck. Hold it here for a few seconds, bring your head back to center, and tilt to the other side. 

Forward and Back Tilts

Stretch your neck up and down to relieve the pressure of looking down toward a desk all day long. Stretch your neck all the way back so your eyes can see the ceiling behind your head. Hold it here for a few seconds and slowly come forward, tilting your head until your chin almost touches your chest. 

Tuck Your Chin

Begin by lying on your back on the floor or on a piece of furniture. Tip your chin down and try to bring it as close to your chest as possible. Rest your head back on the floor and repeat.

Shoulder Shrugs

From a sitting or standing position, keep your head and neck erect and your arms at your sides. Lift your shoulders in a shrug as far as possible. You probably won’t be able to touch your ears, but make this your visual goal. Lower your shoulders back down slowly and repeat.

Use these 5 simple neck exercises to relieve stress and tension as you work or right after you get out of bed in the morning, when neck strain is often the most painful.

The services and information on this site are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice or a recommendation for your specific condition or situation. Consult your physician before you begin any exercise, nutrition, diet, or weight loss program or other change in your lifestyle.