Neck Stretches and Exercises: Alleviating Pain Through Movement

Neck Stretches and Exercises: Alleviating Pain Through Movement

Waking up every morning with neck pain is hassle-some. It takes away your joy and hampers productivity. Almost 20.3% of our country's population suffers from it. However, it also becomes a common ailment as you grow older. But that doesn't mean you accept it as fate and roll with it!

Most of the time, neck soreness is due to an improper pillow or uncomfortable sleep position. That said, you can easily overcome them with the help of easy-to-do neck stretches and exercises from the comfort of your home.

In this article, we walk you through them and also bring you a few tips that will make your neck pain a thing of the past. Let's dive in!


What Causes Neck Pain?

It is always important to understand the cause of the pain. There can be several factors contributing to your pain. Some of them include:

 What Causes Neck Pain?


Muscle Strain

Neck pain usually occurs because of overusing muscles, poor posture, or sudden or abrupt movements. Well, extended deadlines and urgent projects are inevitable. However, prolonged periods of computer or smartphone use without ergonomics can lead to muscle strain.

Sleeping Position

Sometimes, when you don't sleep in a proper position or you use an improper pillow, it can lead to severe neck pain. Here, it becomes important to embrace a proper sleeping posture and invest in a proper pillow for neck pain.

Injury or Trauma

When you suffer from accidents, falls, or sports-related injuries, it can result in strains, sprains, or even more severe damage to the neck. So, consult a doctor here and take the necessary precautions.

Pinched Nerves

Compression or pinching of nerves in the neck region can lead to pain or discomfort in the shoulders, arms, neck, and hands. So, identify the root cause of nerve compression. Here, it becomes imperative to speak with your healthcare provider.

Stress and Tension

Emotional stress and tension can manifest physically. It causes muscle tightness and pain in the neck and shoulders. So, incorporate stress management techniques, such as mindfulness, relaxation exercises, and regular physical activity.

Medical Conditions

If you suffer from conditions like cervical spondylosis, rheumatoid arthritis, and meningitis, it can be an underlying cause of neck pain. A thorough medical evaluation is necessary to diagnose and manage these conditions effectively.


Even infections affecting the throat, neck, or cervical spine can lead to neck pain. Therefore, if the pain seems to be continuous, it is super crucial to identify and treat the infection with the help of your doctor.


9 Neck Stretches And Exercises To Get Rid Of Pain

9 Neck Stretches And Exercises To Get Rid Of Pain

Without further ado, let’s unpack the best neck stretches and exercises that can provide you relief. However, perform these exercises gently and never overstretch. These neck exercises can be practiced any time of the day. Infact, try to incorporate them into your short breaks as well to keep the neck tension away.

1. Neck Tilt

  • You can sit or stand. But keep your back straight while performing this exercise.
  • Next, slowly tilt your head from one side to another, bringing your ear to the shoulder.
  • Feel the stretch and hold it for 15-30 seconds. Repeat it 3-4 times on both sides.

2. Neck Rotation

  • For this neck exercise, turn your head slowly to one side, keeping your chin at the same level.
  • Hold for 15-30 seconds.
  • Repeat on the other side
  • Do this 3-5 times.

3. Neck Extension

  • Slowly, lower your chin towards your chest, feeling a stretch in the back of your neck.
  • Hold for 15-30 seconds.
  • Slowly tilt your head back, looking up towards the ceiling.
  • Hold for 15-30 seconds.
  • Do this 3-5 times.

4. Shoulder Rolls

  • Roll your shoulders backward in a circular motion.
  • Repeat for 10-15 rotations and then switch to forward rolls.

4. Levator Scapulae Stretch

  • Sit or stand with your back straight.
  • Bring your right ear towards your right shoulder.
  • Place your right hand on the left side of your head and apply gentle pressure.
  • Hold for 15-30 seconds.
  • Repeat on the other side.
  • Do it for 3-5 times.

6. Neck Isometrics

  • Sit or stand with your back straight.
  • Place your hand on the side of your head and slowly push your head against your hand without letting it move.
  • Hold for 5-10 seconds, then switch to the other side.
  • Repeat 2-3 times on each side.

7. Chin Tucks

  • Sit or stand with your back straight.
  • Slowly tuck your chin towards your chest, creating a double chin.
  • Hold for 5-10 seconds, then release.
  • Repeat 10-15 times.

8. Towel Pull

  • For this, grab your towel.
  • Roll it and place it around your neck.
  • Hold each end of the towel with both your hands.
  • Slowly, move your head back and roll your head over the towel.
  • Next, immediately return to the original position.
  • Do this 10 times.

9. Resistance Presses

  • Stay in a neutral position at all times.
  • Place one hand on your forehead and the other on the back.
  • Apply pressure for 5 seconds and relax.
  • Do this 5 times.

Tips To Avoid Neck Pain

Tips to get ride from neck pain

Now you know all about the neck exercises to help you out. But the below tips can prove extremely beneficial too and ensure neck pain becomes a thing of the past. Take a look!

Use Proper Pillow For Neck Pain

If you constantly wake up with neck pain, a cervical pillow can be a game-changer. They are specialized pillows that are designed to support the natural curve of the neck. So, as you snooze, your cervical pillow maintains proper neck alignment. Its contoured shape also reduces any pressure on the neck, shoulders, and upper back, enhancing comfort and reducing stiffness.

That's not all. A cervical pillow is also beneficial for people suffering from pain, stiffness, or conditions like cervical spondylosis.

However, when choosing a cervical pillow, consider factors such as firmness, material, and your preferred sleeping position to ensure utmost comfort and relief.

Switch Your Sleep Position

Some sleeping positions can be the culprit. For example, as a stomach sleeper, you tend to twist your head to one side, which can cause pain and stiffness in the neck. But you can try the below-mentioned sleeping positions for relief from neck pain.

Side: Sleeping on your side can be great as it can maintain your spinal alignment. Here, you can also place a firm pillow between your knees to reduce any stress on hips and lower back.

Back: Even sleeping on the side is not for you, you can also try sleeping on your back to maintain alignment. Here, you can place a small pillow under the back of your knee to reduce any stress on the spine.

When it comes to switching sleep positions, it is not the easiest task. But with time, it will become more natural. And, if it is able to combat neck pain, it is something you must try.

Proper Posture

What's your posture like? Because a bad posture can be the cause of neck pain.

When you maintain a popper posture ensures the correct alignment of the body, preventing strain on muscles and joints. Sit or stand with your shoulders back and relaxed and keep your spine in a neutral position.

Always avoid slouching or hunching forward. This can lead to back and neck discomfort. And that's not something you want. Be mindful even when seated. Here, keep your feet flat on the ground and your knees at hip level.

Also, ensure that your computer monitor is at eye level to reduce strain on the neck. Regularly practicing good posture not only supports musculoskeletal health but also contributes to increased energy levels.

Take Breaks And Stretch

Make it a habit to take regular breaks for stretches, especially during prolonged periods of sitting or repetitive tasks. Regular breaks allow your muscles to relax and reduce the risk of stiffness and discomfort.

Perform the simple stretches for the neck as we have mentioned earlier to alleviate tension and improve flexibility. You can also include brief walks or standing stretches to promote circulation and prevent muscle fatigue.

Stay Hydrated

This tip may come as a surprise. But staying hydrated is crucial for overall health, including neck pain. Water is required to lubricate joints and support the spinal discs. This ensures proper spinal alignment. Dehydration can lead to muscle tightness and increased susceptibility to aches. So, drink at least eight glasses of water in a day.


The Final Word

A good night’s rest is everything. It helps you wake up every morning, ready to tackle the day with renewed zeal and enthusiasm. It also supports your overall being for a healthier you. That’s why you must always go for the best pillow for neck pain, such as the cervical pillow from The Sleep Company.

The SmartGrid cervical pillow supports the natural curvature of the neck while promoting proper alignment. It feels like you are laying your head on the cloud yet offers the support you need. It is hypoallergenic and comes with a breathable structure to keep you cool throughout the night.

Don’t let your neck pain interfere with your life. Invest in the right sleep products today!

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