Extending your eight- to 10-pound melon too far forward or too far back, over time, will cause immense strain to your neck, says Jason Brown, D.C., of Brown Integrated Chiropractic
For one, avoid overextending your neck with bad habits like constant texting and slouching. Also, “pack” your neck—by making a double chin—when you perform loaded exercises.
PACK IT UP
Packing your neck during exercises keeps your spine neutral, improving your posture and power output.
HOW TO DO IT: NECK STRETCHES
Directions: Perform the following stretches anytime during the day to target and strengthen the main neck supporters—that is, the levator scapulae and scalene muscles.
- Sit on one of your hands in a chair. Make yourself tall by puffing out your chest and be sure to look straight ahead, too.
- Place your free hand on top of your head. Gently pull it away from you, sideways, until you feel a stretch in your neck. Hold it for about 10 seconds.
- Now perform the same movement but pull your head back at a diagonal angle. Hold for 10 seconds. Repeat both stretches on both sides.
BY BRIAN MATTHEWS, C.S.C.S