Do you have a pain in the neck? I'm not talking about your husband or kids. LOL. I'm talking about real pain that causes stiffness and makes it difficult for you to turn your head. It can radiate down your shoulders, arms, or back and can make sleeping or driving very uncomfortable.
Many of us will get neck pain and the most common cause is overuse. If you spend a lot of hours in front of a computer or on the phone then you will likely develop neck pain. That's because the muscles around your neck are contracting for extended periods of time. They need a break!
First, you will want to stretch the area on a regular basis. A great neck stretch is to gently tilt your head so that you are bringing your ear down closer to your shoulder. Hold this stretch for 10 to 30 seconds and then repeat on the other side. This stretch is shown in the picture above.
Once you can do this stretch with ease you can expand on the move by tilting the head down so that your nose points toward your chest. When you do this you bring more muscle into play. Turning your head from side to side (while keeping it level) is another great way to stretch the muscles.
Once you have regained some flexibility in your neck you will want to add on a strengthening move. This will help you to avoid the chicken head. Take a look at the people around you and notice how many of them look like they're sticking their head forward, like a chicken, to see something on the horizon. Their neck is completely out of alignment which can cause pain.
To counteract this, keep your body still and gently pull your head straight back and hold for three seconds. Repeat this move throughout the day to retrain the muscles to hold your head in alignment. You can also do it while laying down on the floor, and pressing your head against the surface. This is akin to pushing a weight and does wonders for your neck muscles.
Take care of your neck. After all, it holds up that big ole pumpkin head of yours which is very important!
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