Deep Neck Flexor Activation
Purpose: To isolate and strengthen the deep neck flexors, which will help to decrease anterior head carriage and improve posture
Points of Interest: If unsure, make the movement smaller rather than larger to avoid recruitment of the large sternocleidomastoid muscles.
Instructions: Begin lying on your back. Perform a small chin tuck, ensuring that the back of your head remains in contact with the floor. Hold this position for 10 seconds, relax and repeat.
* A helpful cue for some patients is to look at your toes, without lifting your head off the ground.
Purpose: To stretch the upper trapezius muscle that is often overactive with improper posture and shoulder movement.
Points of Interest: Hold the stretch for 20 seconds, relax and repeat. If possible, perform this stretch multiple times throughout the day.
Instructions: Reach one hand behind your back to the back pocket on the opposite side. Grab the back of your head with the other hand and turn your head 45 degrees in that direction. Look down so that you are looking toward your armpit. Your elbow and nose should be in line. Continue to reach with the hand behind your back.
Progression: Push your head into your hand and match the resistance with your hand. This end-range contraction will help the muscle to relax.