Often enough it is easy for us to forget about stretching, as it's something people don't usually consider as "important". Stretching daily is really great to help with improving posture, better balance, as well as reduced aches and pain. Overall stretching has many benefits which will positive impact your health and wellness. Below are a few stretches we recommend at Atlantis Wellness Center for patients with neck pain and cervical conditions.
Upper Trapezius Stretch - 3 repetitions of 30 seconds each
This stretch helps to correct muscular imbalances and restore range of motion. As well as increasing flexibility, and improving mobility and joint function.
Begin by positioning yourself in a seated position with one hand grasping the side of the chair while the other hand is gently contacting the top of your head.
Gently tilt your head forward as your chin drops down towards your chest. Then slightly rotate your head to one side until a stretch is felt in the neck as the hand on top of your head pulls gently to slightly increase the stretch sensation. Attention should be paid not to elevate the opposite side shoulder. Hold for the recommended duration and repeat as instructed.
Quadruped Thoraco-Lumbar Mobility 3 sets of 10 reps, 30 seconds rest
This stretch helps provide stability and support to your thoracic spine while walking and running.
Begin in the quadruped position with palms flat on the floor and knees on the floor below hips. Place left hand on the back of the neck and flex the body towards the floor bringing the left elbow towards the right hip.
Slowly lift the left elbow upwards, extending and rotating the body towards the high elbow. Repeat for the recommended number of repetitions before switching sides.
Isolated Cervical Extension - 3 sets of 10 reps, 30 seconds rest between sets
This stretch helps to increase neck strength and muscular endurance, as well as improve stability, functional strength and injury prevention.
Place fingers around the neck at the location instructed by your chiropractor (may be upper, middle or lower neck). Middle fingers should touch at mid line.
Apply gentle pressure with fingers and extend head. You should feel the neck bending over your fingers. Repeat for prescribed sets and reps.
Head Retraction - 3 sets of 10 reps, 30 seconds rest between sets
The purpose of this stretch is to increase neck strength and muscular endurance.
To start, begin seated, or standing, looking forward with shoulders back with good neutral posture.
Activate core muscles. Attempt to draw head directly backwards. Maintain level head position. Do not tilt head up or down. Hold for two seconds. Return to start position and repeat for prescribed repetitions and sets.
Child Pose with Foam Roll 30 seconds, 3 times a day
This stretch helps to correct shoulder imbalances and restore overall function. In addition, this stretch helps increase flexibility, improve joint range of motion, and improves circulation.
Begin on your knees with hands on foam roll. Hands should be shoulder width apart and directly under shoulders.
Slowly sit hips back, dropping head and chest downward allowing arms to stretch upward. Hold for 20-30 seconds or for prescribed duration. Repeat for prescribed repetitions.