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Neck Exercises Blog, A Guide to a Better Neck Posture

Hello and welcome to Neck Exercises. I am glad you want to take care of your neck. Whether you have neck pain, tension, stress or discomfort, neck exercises can help. Making small adjustments each day to include neck exercises, stretch exercises, or a neck workout, will gradually improve your neck health and quality of life. Let's get started!

10 Lesser Known Neck Pain Easing Tips

 

This is a good list of neck pain easing tips:

http://www.spine-health.com/blog/neck-pain/10-lesser-known-tips-easing-neck-pain

 

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14 Repetitive Stain Injury Prevention Tips

Here’s a list of how to prevent RSI while using the computer and typing:

http://www.mybodyzone.com/2008/10/23/14-repetitive-strain-injury-rsi-prevention-tips/

 

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Neck Exercises: Shoulder Blade Pinches Alternative

I realized that after nursing my 10 month old that my neck was bothering me and my shoulders were forward a lot more. I was reminded by the doctor that having an older and heavier baby will strain my neck and shoulders more while breastfeeding when not properly supported. I’ve been using the wall to help with my posture and the Boppy to bring my son closer to my chest but would look down at him.

With the increase in neck discomfort, I needed to do more neck exercises and target my front chest muscles as well as strengthening my shoulder blade muscles. The shoulder blade pinches that I will describe will also help with my neck posture. When the shoulder blade pinches neck exercises is done with the chin tuck neck exercises these will help to improve your neck posture and decrease stress on the neck.

You can do this sitting or standing but I will describe this shoulder blade pinches neck exercise standing. I found this to be more effective than the sitting shoulder blade pinches neck exercise, in that this alternative neck exercise opens up my chest, brings my shoulders back and strengthens my neck muscles more. This shoulder blade pinches neck exercise also helps with breathing and relieve neck tension.

To start this neck exercise, stand up straight with your feet shoulders width apart, a slight bend in the knees, arms by your sides, shoulders relaxed, chin tucked, and your eyes should be looking straight ahead.  You want to begin this neck exercise by bringing your arms and hands behind your back. Your arms should be straight and your fingers together behind your back. You will notice that your shoulders are forward.

To begin this neck exercises, take a breath in and slowly bring your shoulders towards your back. You want to think and feel your shoulder blades coming closer together and “pinch” in the back. Hold this position for 10 seconds and slowly breathe out. Relax and let your shoulders come back to the beginning position. Repeat this neck exercise 10 times.

You should not feel any pain while doing this shoulder blade pinch alternative with the chin tuck, these neck exercises should be done within your tolerance. There will be a stretching feeling in the front in your chest and the front of your shoulders. Remember to relax the shoulders and avoid the shoulders coming up towards the ears. 

This is a good office and computer break neck exercise to do to relieve any neck tension or discomfort. When this shoulder blade pinches neck exercises are done on a daily basis as part of a neck workout with other neck exercises, they will help alleviate neck pain and improve neck posture. Other shoulder blade pinches will be described at a later time.

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Preventing Neck Stiffness

Here’s a good brief post about preventing neck stiffness:

http://healthmad.com/conditions-and-diseases/prevent-neck-pain-stiff-neck/

 

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7 Undulations to Relieve Office Tension

 

Here’s the link for a FREE PDF about “7 Undulations to Relieve Office Tension”. In this PDF contains 7 different exercises that you can do at your office or sitting.

http://undulationexercise.blogspot.com/2009/10/get-rid-of-your-pain-in-neck.html

 

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 Neck Exercises: Isometric Chin Tucks

The isometric chin tuck neck exercise is similar to the standing chin tucks neck exercise in which in the back of your head you are resisting the backwards movement. All of the different chin tucks neck exercises help to improve the forward head posture and stretching the upper neck muscles at the back of the head. The front neck muscles under your chin are strengthening while doing these chin tucks neck exercises.

The goal of the chin tucks neck exercises are to improve the neck posture by limiting the forward head and rounded shoulders posture. We want to limit this forward chin posture to avoid neck pain, neck tension, headaches, stress, numbness and tingling and other possible neck symptoms. These chin tuck neck exercises focuses on the deep neck muscles, the muscles that support your head that weighs about 12 pounds. Think of your head as a bowling ball with small muscles attached to the base of the head trying to support this weight. That’s a lot of work for small neck muscles and by doing neck exercises they will get stronger.

You can do this isometric chin tucks neck exercises either sitting or standing. I’ll describe the sitting isometric chin tuck neck exercise here. This is a great neck exercise to do as a break from being in front of the computer, TV or driving all day. The beauty of this neck exercise is that this targets more than just your neck muscles but also to relax your shoulder muscles and open up your chest muscles. By having you stretch out your chest muscles with this isometric chin tuck neck exercise will reverse the forward shoulder posture.

For this isometric chin tuck position, you want to intertwine your fingers and have your palms behind and at the top of your head. Start by sitting straight up, feet flat on the floor, your chin parallel to the floor, eyes level and looking straight ahead. You want your shoulders to be relaxed.

Breathe in and bring your arms up and have your hands behind your head. Perform a chin tuck by bringing your chin towards the palm of your hands. Be sure that your chin tuck matches the resistance of your hands. Breathe out and hold this position 10 seconds. Then slowly release off your hands. Repeat this isometric chin tucks neck exercises 10 times. 

When these isometric chin tucks neck exercises are done on a daily basis and multiple times throughout the day, will strengthen your neck muscles to improve your head and neck posture. An improved head and neck posture will allow you to breathe in and out more, alleviate neck pain and discomfort and to decrease neck tension.  

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Jaw Joint Pain

 

Here’s a good brief overview of how neck pain and headaches can be associated with the jaw:

http://marie.pages.webhop.net/?p=29

 

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Neck Exercises: Sternocleidomastoid (SCM) Stretch

Feeling tension in the front and side of your neck? Finding that your head is tilting a bit to the side? Just feeling tightness when turning to the side? The muscle that is responsible for the tightness would be the Sternocleidomastoid muscle or known as SCM.  In order to relieve neck tension in the front is to do the SCM neck exercises and stretches. 

Sternocleidomastoid is named for its attachments to the bones in the neck. The SCM muscle has two parts in the front attachment – on the top of the sternum and on the clavicle. The SCM muscle ends at the mastoid process behind your jaw bone. When SCM on both sides of the neck work together the movement is neck flexion or bringing your chin down towards your chest. When SCM is working on one side it brings your head towards the same side shoulder and rotates to the opposite side. 

Why do you want to perform neck exercises and stretches for the SCM? By stretching the SCM this neck exercise will help loosen the front and side of the neck. This will prevent any forward and tilted head from forming. By keeping the SCM flexible you will have greater neck range of motion. Another benefit of having the SCM muscle loose is that you avoid any compression on blood vessels or any nerves. 

To begin SCM neck exercises as a stretch, sit upright in a chair. Have your feet flat on the floor, your shoulders relaxed, your hands resting on your lap, look straight ahead and perform a chin tuck. This SCM neck exercise will be felt on one side at a time. You will start with the right side and then will switch to the left side for these neck exercises.

Take a breath in and bring your left ear towards your shoulder about 45 degrees be sure you are still looking forward. Now turn your head so that your nose is pointing towards the ceiling about a 45 degree angle. Your eyes should be focus up towards the ceiling. Breathe out and hold for 30 seconds. You should feel a stretch on the right front and side of the neck. You can bring your right hand down and reach towards the floor to get more of a stretch.  Slowly bring your head back to the starting position. Now reverse direction to stretch the left SCM. Repeat these neck exercises three times.

There should be no pain when you perform these SCM stretch neck exercises. You should feel a tolerable stretch. If you find you get dizzy, release a little bit on the stretch. If you find that the SCM stretch is too much, limit the amount of neck motion on both the side bending and rotation of the head. These SCM stretch neck exercises should relieve the neck tension and help improve your neck posture. 

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Having Good Posture While Driving

Here’s a good post about having good posture while driving:

http://thewallsoflove.com/join/mangocurry/2009/10/25/correcting-posture/

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Women Have Same Heart Attack Symptoms as Men

Here is an article about explaining how the heart symptoms are the same for women and men:

http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20091025/heart_attacks_091025/20091025?hub=Health

 

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