Neck Pain Relief Through
Stretching And Strengthening…

› [Neck Pain Relief]


For immediate neck pain relief, you will want to ice with a bag of crushed ice for 10 minutes, or a gel pack if you are cold sensitive...

Getting a treatment first to remove any muscle spasms and mis-alignments is optimal...

Two types of treatment I personally endorse are:

  • Activator Methods Chiropractic
  • Active Release Technique - Chiropractic

Both Methods are safe and effective, but to streamline this endorsement, I would say for children and the elderly, Activator Methods would be the most comfortable...

For an athlete, pro or amateur, A.R.T is the way to go...

Having said that, if you are just feeling your symptoms come on, you will still be able to go through these exercises as you become accustomed to strengthening and stretching…

Something to keep in mind when doing these exercises for neck pain relief. Soreness is acceptable and to be expected, but if you are having ‘burning’, ‘jabbing’ or your neck is ‘stuck’; stop and get yourself seen by a professional first…

Stretching And Strengthening
Demands Patience...

 If you are clear to begin, you will need to take it easy, and be focused in your movement…

You cannot reshape your neck and upper back in a day, and if you are overly ambitious, these exercises and stretches and could stop you in your quest for neck pain relief by further irritating or injuring damaged tissue, or at least until the lactic acid has left your muscles...

This will have you back at square one, so…

Stretch Point: The stretch point is one of the most important things to know in order to avoid more injury and pain to any area of the body...

When stretching any muscle for therapeutic benefit, you take the stretch to a point where holding it for 15 seconds allows the stretch to fade - this is the stretch point...

If the stretch does not fade within this time frame, you have stretched too far, and need to start over and try again...

The stretch point is a safety measure and should always be used when stretching tissue that has been injured or has been in chronic pain...

Strengthening The Lower
Trapezius Muscle…

You can also use an appropriately weighted set of dumb bells to create this movement...

One component in chronic neck pain is the ‘hunching’ of the upper trapezius…

These ‘frozen’ trapezius muscles will feel like bricks initially when you go to get treated…

In order to get neck pain relief from this type of condition, we need to rebalance this muscle with the lower trapezius…

This will involve some exercises to rebalance the upper and lower portion of this muscle…

If you have upper back pain from Military Spine, the tendency will be to ‘hunch’ your shoulders, or squeeze your traps (unconsciously) while sitting in order to take the load off of your lumbar spine, so this information will be useful to you should you have this condition as well… 


You can also create this movement by laying flat on a bench and pulling your dumb bells toward you off the floor...


Deep Neck

Flexor Muscles...

To strengthen the deep flexor muscles of the neck:

With your head on a folded towel, lie in a supine position (on your back) and bend your knees and place your feet flat on the floor. This positioning should put your spine in a ‘neutral’ position and you should feel relaxed…

Lifting your head, you will feel the deep muscles of your neck flex…

While your head is up, do a small nodding movement aiming your eyes as if to look at your feet… 

Exercising the deep neck flexors is a subtle movement of the chin down and in; avoid pressing too hard...

Hold stationary for five seconds and then lay your head down slowly to rest…

If you start out easy and do this just once a day with the other exercises, as long as you are not trying to do them whilst in dyer pain, you should start to notice a difference in your neck and the rest of your postural awareness sooner than later…

 
Shortened Pectoralis

Muscles…

Shortened pectoralis muscles go right along with hunched shoulders and neck pain

If your upper trapezius is drawn up in contraction, it naturally causes rounding of the shoulders, and the strength in the pectoralis (chest muscles) will automatically pull the shoulders inward…

This gives the horizontally positioned Pectoralis an opportunity to shorten…

Pecs are muscles that shorten as soon as there is an imbalance in the strength of any portion of the deltoid muscle group that make the rotator cuff (shoulder muscles) or the Trapezius muscle- one imbalance feeds the other...

You can also create this stretch by laying flat on the floor stretching your arms out if you do not have this kind of flexibility

This being the case, you can change this by strengthening your deltoids, and stretching your Pecs…

The way I prefer to do this by the use of dumb bells, with just enough weight to stimulate the muscles to control the weight…

Too light or heavy will either have no effect, or for the later, the effect will not be a pleasant one…



Upper Trapezius and Levator

Scapulae Stretching For
Neck Pain Relief…  

When stretching the Levator Scapulae (the LS is the one that is the devil when it gets sore…!) it is important not to overdo it…!

Its a sllight lateral bend to the side, then turn your nose down to your armpit. Be gentle with this one...

This is your neck, so be gentle when you position your head laterally…

And then please rotate it slowly as you turn your chin down toward your armpit…

 Its not necessary to do this for more than a five count – breathing in and out slowly…

It is important to get yourself treated first if it causes more pain than mild soreness…

Joint pain, especially in the area of the neck can have a wide range of symptoms ranging from simple to serious...

Summary…

Because I sit on my backside and write for a good portion of my day now (when I am not lifting weights), I do these exercises every day…

But, I do not do a huge number of sets to keep my trapezius balanced, nor do I over stretch…

It is possible to blow out your stretch receptors in the muscle tissue by over stretching (holding a stretch pose for over two minutes usually does it) and then you have a new set of problems…

Moderation in most things is usually the key to balance…

And since this page is about achieving balance, moderation with this type of movement will give you the best neck pain relief results...

And, I will say it again, if you are in pain before starting, go see your professional first…!

› [Neck Pain Relief]

Disclaimer – This is information on joint pain. I teach, but I do not diagnose, prescibe or treat people who contact me. You are responsible for your condition using your own best judgement combined with what you have learned. Just a heads up - bodies carry unusual differences from time to time, in saying that, you could be one of those rare and unusual beings; if you are in doubt, please contact a physician in your area, so you can rule it out.

Move Freely and Knowledgeably and Be Well!

Dr. Jo

P.S...    “Greater certainty of your condition alone can be a powerful form of pain relief.”