If you’re reading this e-book, it’s most likely that you’re experiencing some neck pain! Let me assure you, this is common! Neck pain is one of the most common complaints I see in the office every day. The common theme seems to be those of us who sit too much during the day or carry a lot of stress. The following exercises are my favorite, go-to exercises for my patients experiencing neck pain. Give them a try and I’m sure at least one will help you!
Stand up nice and tall with your chest up and shoulders back. Perform a “half-way” chin tuck so you feel a stretch in the back of the neck. Maintain this position and breathe in through your belly. Think about elongating your spine as you breathe. Imagine tying a string to the back of the head down to the top of the shoulders. You will want this string to be as long as possible. With poor posture, you can see clearly this “string” is shortened. With the proper posture, this string is lengthened along with the spine. This is a great exercise to do during the day at work when you are sitting at your desk or even driving home.
Okay I’ll admit, this is one to do when there aren’t other people around! For chin tucks, we want to pull the chin all the way in until you look a bit silly! You’ll want to see the “double-chin” in this move and you’ll feel the muscles in the front of the neck contract. These muscles are often weak and require engagement to help support the neck.
This exercise might seem out of place in a neck pain E-book, but let me explain why! If you’re like most people with neck pain, you feel the pain at the base of the neck in a muscle called the elevator capsule. Often, this muscle can operate “unchecked” when your latissimus dorsi (the muscle that helps you with pull-ups) isn’t firing enough. Standing rows help to engage this muscle and balance out the elevator and latissimus relationship. Now your shoulders won’t ride up to your ears! You can do this with weights (like in the picture) or you can do it without!
Belly breathing, or diaphragmatic breathing, is the first exercise I teach all of my patients. It’s THAT important. Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. As you breathe IN, your belly should press up and out. To most people, this will feel a little backwards! This is how we are meant to breathe. However, throughout life we develop into chest and shoulder breathers. If you took notice of your first breath, you may have noticed that your shoulders and chest lifted up first. Now imagine every breath of every day you were doing mini shoulder shrugs…at the end of the day yourshoulders will be sore! The same concept applies here and that’s why we need to correct breathing patterns!
A good chiropractor will provide a thorough exam and identify the main causes of your neck pain. Chiropractic adjustments are very comfortable and very safe! Not all adjustments require the “popping” or “cracking” and at Cohle Performance Chiropractic, we make sure we give you a care of plan that is very specific to you! We offer a free, 20 minute discovery session where you can sit and talk with the doctor to find out what’s going on and more ways to help ease the pain without pills or surgery! Call 717-503-9454 to set up your FREE Discovery Visit!
The information above should not substitute medical advice. When sharp and/or achy pain or nerve pain persists for more than 24-36 hours and is consistently painful, you should immediately consult with a trained medical professional. When managed in a timely manner, neck pain can be addressed and resolved with the correct applications.
About the author:
Dr. Chad Cohle understands from firsthand experience the frustration of injuries and the common nagging pains that athletes experience year after year. A central Pennsylvania native, Dr. Cohle loved athletics from a young age, playing high school and then college sports (volleyball, football, basketball). When he started experiencing sharp pains between his shoulder blades that severely limited his basketball training, he received treatment from a chiropractor and found significant relief. During his treatment for this injury, Dr. Cohle also found his calling. He knew he was passionate about helping athletes eliminate pain and improve performance. Chiropractic became his path to do this. While attending Palmer College of Chiropractic, he continued to feed his passion for treating athletes by becoming a member and active participant in Sports Council, traveling to many sporting events around the area, treating athletes. Dr. Cohle helps people aged 30-55 who are tired of being told to “just rest it” return to their favoritesporting activities, avoid slowing down and stay out of the doctor’s office.