Do you have neck pain?
There are many causes for neck pain, but here is a very common cause and a simple strengthening solution.
Often our heads get “stuck” in a forward position. This happens because of the way we hold our head for long periods. The muscles both in front and in back of our necks can cause distress for us.
The front/side neck muscles attach from collar bone at the “notch” to our skull behind our ears. The back neck muscles attach to our skull.
When we are in this “forward head” position, the muscles in the back of our neck can get weak and overstretched.
Here is a simple tip to strengthen the muscles in the back of our neck. When these muscles are strong, they help us hold our head upright.
- Lay on your back. Your bed is fine. Use no pillow or the flattest pillow possible for your comfort (only if you absolutely need to.)
- Rock your head slowly by tilting your chin up and down. When you find the position for your head that feels the most neutral and comfortable, stay there. Your chin should point neither up nor down at this point.
- Gently press the back of your head into your mattress. Do this gently. Pay attention to what is going on in your neck as you do this.
If it causes discomfort, or feels inappropriate, stop. It should only feel like movement with resistance from your mattress. You are only pressing until you feel resistance.
It is not a competition! Find your neutral, most comfortable neck position. Press gently into your mattress until you feel resistance. Repeat several times, assessing how your neck feels. If you hear a little noise in your neck, like creaking, that is natural.
This is the first step in strengthening the back side of your body.
A strong, balanced back is a happy back!