Neck pain or stiffness is a common problem faced by millions of people across the world. It is extremely prevalent among sedentary office workers who spend long hours in front of a laptop. The bones, ligaments, and muscles of the neck support our head and allow for motion. Any abnormalities, inflammation, or injury can cause neck pain or stiffness.  In such cases, physiotherapy based neck pain relief exercises can prove to be helpful for patients.

The more common causes of neck pain include:

  • Stress and some mental health issues
  • Prolonged poor postures; incorrect postures; sustained postures (eg. falling asleep in an awkward position, or even carrying a child for long, can cause strain)
  • Muscular strains or spasm and overuse or underuse (deconditioning)
  • Minor injuries and falls
  • Motor vehicle accidents

Neck pain can be successfully treated with home physiotherapy which includes neck pain relief exercises. The application of a heating pack is often recommended for a sore or stiff neck, as the heating pack improves blood flow to the affected area, helping the muscle to recover quicker.

New research has shown that neck pain relief exercises performed as part of physiotherapy and some specific strengthening exercises are effective ways to eliminate neck pain, stiffness, and headaches. Maintaining your core strength, which depends on the strength of the muscles of your abdomen, back, and buttocks is important in preventing neck pain.

Some effective neck pain relief exercises are mentioned below:

  1. Look Straight

Look forward. Don’t tilt your chin down to look at your smart devices, try moving the device up towards eye level, just like your desktop screen should be. This is one of the simplest of the many physiotherapy based neck pain relief exercises.

  1. Shoulder Extension

If your posture isn’t perfect, try doing shoulder extensions. Arch your neck and upper back backward, pulling your shoulders in alignment to your ears. This simple stretch is one of the most effective neck pain relief exercises you can perform anywhere, anytime and can alleviate stress and muscle pain.

  1. Chair stand
  • Sit on a chair with your feet hip-width apart
  • Place your hands on your thighs
  • Tighten your abdominal muscles. Exhale as you slowly stand up.
  • Slowly sit down again
  • Repeat 8 to 10 times
  1. Single leg raise
  • Sit straight on a chair with your hands resting on your legs and your feet on the floor
  • Exhale as you slowly lift your leg as high as you comfortably can
  • Return to starting position
  • Repeat 8 to 10 times on both legs
  1. Staggered chair stand
  • Sit with your feet a few inches apart, your left heel even with the toes of your right foot, and your hands on your thighs
  • Tighten your abdominal muscles. Exhale as you slowly stand up.
  • Slowly sit down
  • Repeat 8 to 10 times
  • Alternate foot positions and repeat
  1. Heel raise
  • Stand straight behind the chair, holding the back with your feet hip-width apart and your weight evenly distributed
  • Tighten your abdominal muscles
  • Lift up on your toes until you’re standing on the balls of your feet (don’t let your ankles roll inward or outward.)
  • Slowly lower your heels to the floor.
  • Repeat 8 to 10 times

This exercise will aid in improving your balance & posture and prevent neck pain.

  1. Front plank on table
  • Stand facing a table with your feet together
  • Tighten your abdominal muscles and lower your upper-body weight onto your forearms on the table
  • Clasp your hands together and align your shoulders directly over your elbows
  • Step back on the balls of your feet until you are balancing your body in a line like a plank. Don’t arch or bend your back.
  • Hold for 15 to 60 seconds
  1. Standing side leg lift
  • Stand straight behind a chair, holding the back with your feet together and your weight evenly distributed.
  • Slowly lift your leg to the side until your foot is about six inches from the floor.
  • (Don’t turn your foot out.)
  • Repeat 8 to 10 times on both the legs

If you are experiencing any symptoms of stiff neck, the next step is to book in for a home physiotherapy assessment to really get to the root of the problem.

HealthCare atHome’s team of expert home physiotherapists will guide you through a series of neck pain relief exercises to help strengthen both your neck and back muscles and even devise a customized treatment plan to suit your medical requirements. To avail expert physiotherapy treatment at home for neck pain, contact us at 1800-102-4224. If you have any questions or doubts, please share your comment below.

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