Isometric Neck Exercises: Basic Neck Strengthening
What exactly are isometric neck exercises? Isometric neck exercises are head exercises that only require your hands for strengthening your neck muscles. Isometric exercises are the very basic strengthening exercises to help build endurance to the muscle. The isometric neck exercises will help protect the vital throat and surrounding structures. Isometric exercises will recruit muscles in order to strengthen without pain or movement.
There are different ways to do isometric neck exercises and with various positions. I will describe the sitting isometric neck exercises in a “neutral” position. Neutral position meaning the head is aligned with the shoulders, looking straight ahead with no tilt in any directions. In other words, perform a sitting chin tuck. A neutral position will train your neck muscles while in good posture.
Start by sitting in a supportive chair and sit straight up. Keep your feet flat on the floor, relax your shoulders, look straight ahead and perform a chin tuck. This position will be the starting positions for all of the isometric neck exercises described here. I will describe the four basic isometric neck exercises: forward, backwards, sideways and rotation.
Isometric Neck Exercise: Front neck muscles (Neck Flexors)
Begin with starting position. Place the palm of your non-dominant hand on the top of your forehead. Take a deep breath in through the nose. Have your forehead match the resistance of your palm. Breathe out slowly through your mouth to the count of 10. Repeat 10 times.
Isometric Neck Exercise: Back of the neck (Neck Extensors)
Repeat the starting position. Place both hands behind the top of your head. Take a breath in. Be sure to press the back of your head against your hands and breathe out. Hold this position for 10 seconds and repeat 10 times.
Isometric Neck Exercise: Side bending (Neck Lateral Flexors)
Start with your palm up against the top of your right side of your head. This is also known as the temple area. Take a breath. Have your head match the resistance on the right side without bringing your ear towards the shoulder. Breathe out to 10 seconds. Repeat 10 times. Switch sides to work your left side.
Isometric Neck Exercise: Rotation (Neck Rotators)
Same as the side bending neck exercises but avoid your right side of your head to turn right. You can also place your left hand on the top of your right head to avoid turning. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat 10 times.
No movement in any direction should take place in any of these isometric neck exercises. Be sure to continuously breathe. Holding your breath will cause an increase in your blood pressure that can result in becoming dizzy or lightheaded. There should be no pain in any neck exercises. When isometric neck exercises are performed as a daily neck workout results should be seen in a matter of weeks. Isometric exercises are the beginning and not functional exercises. Other isometric neck exercises will be described at a later time.
Here’s a quick history on how isometric exercises started:
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