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Which Are The Best Exercises For Cervical Pain?

Find relief from cervical pain with our comprehensive guide to the best exercises designed to alleviate discomfort and improve neck health.

  • 26 Oct 2023
  • 3 min read

Dealing with cervical pain can be a real pain in the neck! Cervical pain, also known as neck pain, refers to discomfort or pain in the cervical spine region, the upper part of the spine that encompasses the neck. Blame it on our modern lifestyles — hours spent hunched over screens and desks can wreak havoc on our necks.

But the good news is that incorporating simple exercises into your daily fitness regimen can make a significant difference in alleviating cervical pain. Let’s explore the five best exercises for cervical pain that can help you say goodbye to nagging neck discomfort.


Best exercises for cervical pain

  1. Neck tilts
  2. Neck rotations
  3. Chin tucks
  4. Shoulder blade squeezes
  5. Ear-to-shoulder stretch

Let’s look at the correct technique to do each of these exercises for cervical pain.


1.    Neck tilts

One of the simplest yet most effective exercises for cervical pain, neck tilts are a game-changer. Sit or stand straight, slowly tilt your head to one side and bring your ear closer to your shoulder. Maintaining the tilt on each side for about 15 to 20 seconds can work wonders.

Neck tilts primarily target the muscles on the sides of your neck, helping to release built-up tension and promote flexibility. This gentle stretch encourages better blood circulation to the neck area, reducing pain and increasing the range of motion.


2.    Neck rotations

Neck rotations are soothing exercises that can help ease stiffness and enhance the mobility of your cervical spine. This exercise involves rotating your head to the left and right as if you are saying no. Begin with your head facing straight ahead, then gradually turn to the left and right. A fluid motion is critical here; avoid jerky movements.

By partaking in these rotations, you are effectively broadening your neck’s range of motion and easing the stiffness holding you back.


3.    Chin tucks

Chin tucks target the deep cervical flexor muscles, which play an important role in maintaining proper neck alignment. Strengthening these muscles can lead to improved posture, reduced strain on the neck, and a more stable and comfortable neck position.

To do chin tucks while sitting or standing, gently retract your chin, bringing it towards your throat without tilting your head up or down. Hold this position for a few seconds, then release it. Repeat this exercise multiple times to help counteract the strain caused by hunching forward.

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4.    Shoulder blade squeezes


Shoulder blade squeezes target the muscles between your shoulder blades, an area often overlooked in neck exercises. Start by sitting up straight and keeping your shoulders open and relaxed. Slowly squeeze your shoulder blades together like you are trying to hold a pencil between them. Hold a squeeze for a few seconds and release.

This exercise counterbalances the forward slouching many of us experience, contributing to a stronger upper body and a more supportive posture. You can reduce stress on the neck and upper back by engaging these muscles, ultimately leading to diminished cervical pain.


5.    Ear-to-shoulder stretch

The ear-to-shoulder stretch is one of the best exercises for cervical pain that provides a gentle stretch along the sides of your neck. While sitting or standing, slowly lower your left ear toward your left shoulder without lifting it. Hold the stretch for 15-20 seconds before repeating on the other side.

This stretch relaxes and relieves tension by focusing on the muscles that control lateral neck movement. The ear-to-shoulder stretch can increase comfort when regularly included in your routine, making it an essential tool for treating cervical pain.



By including these easy-to-do exercises in your daily routine, you can significantly reduce cervical pain and enhance the health of your neck as a whole. Consistency is important. Regularly carrying out these exercises, combined with maintaining good posture and drinking plenty of water, can significantly reduce discomfort and improve your quality of life. So the next time you feel the twinge in your neck, remember these best exercises for cervical pain and give your neck the care it deserves!

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