Stretch the Neck
An important stretch for combating the incursions of neck pain during a day of working at the desk is called the levator scapula stretch. The levator scapula is a long muscle that emerges between the 3rd and 4th cervical vertebrae and connects to the shoulder blade. Whenever your neck is stiff or sore, it is worth putting this muscle through some motions to alleviate some of the tension that naturally accumulates throughout the day.
- On the sore side, raise your elbow above the shoulder and rest it against a door jamb. This lengthens the muscle and prepares it for the articulation that will follow and create the stretch.
- Turn your head in the opposite direction of the side that needs stretching and move your chin downward, to create a stretch in the back of the neck.
- Finally, you can use your free hand to pull the head forward gently and add to the intensity of the stretch.
- Hold for as long as possible, but not for more than a minute.
This is one of the most effective stretches for alleviating tension in the neck. Little tricks like this can make the world of difference for chronically stiff and sore spines. If there is a deeper lying problem that may be contributing to your recurrent back pain, give our office a call so we can determine the true cause and help you on a path toward recovery.
Dr. Gregory Lind, D.C.