Neck Stretches to Relieve Neck and Shoulder Pain

 Photo by: Bigstockphoto

Photo by: Bigstockphoto

Suffering from stiff neck and painful shoulder muscles? Whether you slept in a weird position last night or you’ve been sitting in front of the computer for far too long, neck pain could develop at any time. Unfortunately, neck pain could lead to persistent headaches and upper back pain too! Before the pain worsens, perform any of these moves to loosen the neck muscles and get relieve from pain:

Seated Neck Release

This move will ease the pain by targeting the sides muscles of the neck. To perform the seated neck release, sit on the yoga mat in a cross-legged position. Then, extend the right arm to the right knee. Put your left hand on the top of the head and gently tilt the head to the left, applying slow pressure with your to increase the stretch.

To deepen the stretch, you can hold onto your right knee to stabilize the torso. Hold this position for 30 seconds then slowly go back to the starting position and stretch the other side.

Holding Neck Stretch

This move offers a deep stretch for the neck and back, alleviating pain and loosening stiff muscles. To perform the holding neck stretch, sit on a chair or on the floor with the back straight and hips grounded firmly. Put both palms to the back of your head and start pressing yourself down slowly. Use the heels of your palms to stretch the neck muscle down, away from the shoulders for a deeper stretch. Hold this position for 30 seconds, lift your head up slowly then release.

Behind the Back Neck Stretch

This stretch provides a soothing stretch to the sides of the neck. To perform this move, stand up straight with your feet hip distance apart. Put your hands on the sides. Now, reach both hands behind the back and hold onto your left wrist with your right hand. With your right hand, gently straighten your left arm and slight pull it away from you. Increase the stretch by lowering your right ear towards the shoulder. Hold this position for 30 seconds then switch sides.

Seated Chest Opener

This move will open up the chest, soothing strained neck and shoulder muscles. To perform this move, sit with your legs tucked under your thighs. Now, lean the upper body back and plant your palms flat on the floor, about 10 inches behind you. Press your hands firmly into the ground to open the chest muscles, arch your back and push your hips into your heels. To deepen the stretch, lower your head back, stretching the neck to open up the chest even more. Hold this position for 30 seconds then go back to the starting position.


The bridge is a popular yoga pose that stretches the back, the neck, and the hips muscles. To perform this move, lie on your back on the floor, your arms placed on the sides of the body with palms facing down. Then, bend the knees and keep your feet flat on the floor. Walking your heels as close as you can to your buttocks, lifting the hips off the floor. To deepen the stretch, continue lifting the hips high. Hold this position for 30 seconds before going back to the starting position.

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