The most common form of neck pain typically starts from poor posture because it leads to extra tension on the neck muscles, irritates the joints, and causes neck pain. Exercise can be helpful to reduce pain, increase mobility, and lead to the strengthening of neck and postural musculature. 


Neck pain is a very common problem that happens for a variety of reasons. It typically gets away within a few weeks, and it rarely becomes severe. You can take various steps to relieve neck pain by using over-the-counter (OTC) pain relief medications. 


Exercise for neck pain relief and others can be beneficial for reducing neck tension and increasing mobility of the neck. But if you are experiencing severe neck pain, then you should never attempt doing exercise. Instead, you should consult a healthcare professional. 


Can Exercise Help In Reducing Neck Pain?

Exercise may help reduce neck pain, although the cause of the pain can be an essential factor. However, if you have recently suffered from any injury-causing neck pain, it is advisable to consult a medical practitioner before doing exercise. 


The treatments will aim at reducing the neck pain by depending on the source of neck pain, such as:


  • Increasing the postural strength
  • Increase in joint mobility and improvement in the range of motion. 
  • Reducing the neural tension
  • Increasing the flexibility of the muscles


A person may often get relief from neck pain by taking rest and trying gentle exercises at home. Severe forms of neck pain require various additional forms of treatment. In such cases, the doctor may suggest you visit a physical therapist for exercise. 


Potential Causes of Neck Pain

There are usually main types of conservatively managed neck pain such as:


  • Neck pain with mobility deficits – It is called a stiff neck that a person experiences after experiencing strain in the neck muscles while lifting heavy weights or at the time of sleeping. 


  • Neck pain with movement coordination impairment – It is the type of neck pain that a person experiences after sitting for a long time at the desk in a wrong position. 


  • Neck pain with headaches – It is a type of neck pain that consists of headaches at the back of the head.


  • Neck pain with radiating pain – It includes neck pain due to spinal stenosis. It refers to a slipped disc or herniated disc, which may be caused by cervical nerve compression. 


Exercises For Neck Pain Relief

Neck stretching can help you a lot in relieving muscle tension and improving your range of motion. Following are some of the effective exercises practiced for neck pain relief and others are as follows:



  • Rotation



  • From a neutral position, try turning the head slowly to the left as if you are looking over the shoulder.


  • Then pause for some time and return to the starting position. 


  • Then repeat doing the same from the right side.



  • Forward Bending



  • Try lowering your head in a forward position towards the chest and hold on to the same place for a movement.


  • Then slowly try moving the head upward back to the neutral position.


  • Repeat the same several times. 



  • Shoulder Rolls



  • It will help if you start by keeping your neck and head in a neutral position 


  • Then try lifting your shoulder in a shrugging motion by keeping your head and neck unmoved. 


  • Then you have to make a circular shoulder motion by squeezing your shoulder blades together and then release them to push them forward. 


  • Then repeat the same movement in the opposite direction. 



  • Side Bends



  • You have to extend your arms straight above the hands and clasp your hands. 


  • Then lean slowly towards the left without bending the neck.


  • The return to the neutral or central position while keeping the arms above the head. 


  • Then repeat the same movement from the right side. 



  • Seated Twist



  • Try sitting on the chair with your back in a straight position. 


  • Then put the left hand on your right knee and try to gently pull to rotate the shoulders to the right side in such a way as if you are looking behind the chair.


  • Then return to the center slowly and repeat the same twist by the right hand on the left knee.



  • Head Lifts



  • You have to lie flat on your back by keeping the arms stretched to both sides.


  • Then you have to nod the head and tuck to the chin and stay in the same position for some time before returning to the neutral position. 


  • It will help if you repeat the same movement several times. 



  • Lateral Raises



  • It would help if you stood straight by keeping your feet shoulder-width apart and keeping weight in each hand.


  • By keeping the body steel, try moving your hand outwards till they are level with the shoulders. 


  • Then try slowly lowering the arms back to the side and then perform the same exercise again.



  • Anterior Raises



  • Try holding the weight in each hand, then stand upright.


  •  Then move the body weights in the forward position away from the body.


  • Keep your arms straight and then move until the weight is in level with the shoulder. 


  • Then return to the starting position slowly and repeat the same exercise.