Neck Stretches to Remove Knots

Muscle knots can form in your neck as a result of tension or inflammation in your neck or shoulder muscles. Your neck may feel tight and difficult to move. In most cases, knots aren't a cause for major concern, though they can cause you a considerable amount of discomfort. Stretching your neck gently can help ease tight muscles and remove painful knots. Consult with your doctor before you perform neck exercises if you have a spinal or muscle condition.

A yoga class is stretching their neck. (Image: Wavebreakmedia Ltd/Wavebreak Media/Getty Images)

Step 1

Bend your neck forward to press your chin toward your chest, while keeping your shoulders straight.

Step 2

Hold the position for 15 to 20 seconds once you feel a gentle stretch along the back of your neck.

Step 3

Turn your head to one side as if looking over your shoulder until you feel a light pull along the sides of your neck.

Step 4

Maintain the stretch for 15 to 20 seconds and repeat the exercise looking the opposite way.

Step 5

Tilt your head to one side to press your ear toward your shoulder while keeping your shoulders squared and still.

Step 6

Hold the stretch for 15 to 20 seconds once you feel a gentle pull in muscles along the sides of your neck and repeat the stretch by tilting your head to the opposite side.

Step 7

Tilt your head slightly forward and to one side.

Step 8

Reach behind your shoulder and gently press on the back of your head until you feel a gentle stretch along the back of your neck.

Step 9

Hold the position for 15 to 20 seconds and repeat by angling your head to the opposite side when you bend it forward.

Step 10

Repeat these exercises several times each day to help remove knots and ease tight, sore muscles in your neck.

Tip

Stretch your neck regularly to help prevent new knots from forming, particularly if you work on a computer or in another environment where your neck may be strained or stationary for long periods.

Warning

Don't stretch so far that it causes pain. If you have knots in your neck or shoulder muscles, you may only be able to move your neck a few inches before it becomes painful.

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