Weightlifting & Exercise/weak neck

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Question
Dear Greg

I have an extremely weak neck. When I do yoga, backbending it's really hard for me, as I cannot bend my neck. If I do, it feels like it is snapping in two. I also tried gymnastics, but I had to quit after the first session as it felt like I had a whiplash the next day. The pain lasted a few days.
I had an X ray and the vertebrea are healthy, though the spine has lost some of the natural curvature. So I do not think it is a bone weakness, but the muscles and ligaments.
I hope you can help.

Answer
Hi Tam,

Sure so watch your posture as you go about your day and hold your head well aligned with the ears to the shoulders. You should do neck stretches in all directions and hold for 30-60 seconds. As far as strengthening, do dumbbell/barbell shrugs to strengthen the trapezius which supports the back and some of the side of the neck. Put a towel around your forehead and pull it backwards while not allowing your head to move to strengthen it isometrically. You can also interlock the fingers of both hands and use the back of your hand to push against your forehead while trying to resist. Don't go hard just enough to tense the neck muscles. You may want to ask the Doctor if you are getting arthritis as well if they have not checked for that already. These exercises should help, if not write me back and we will try something else. Thanks for writing Tam.

Greg

Weightlifting & Exercise

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Greg Hoppe

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I can answer questions on proper exercise technique, starting as well as growing in attaining your fitness goals and questions regrading how the human body works from an exercise physiology standpoint. I can assist with any questions regarding anatomy & physiology, stretching and rehabilitation. I am also extremely well versed and experienced in martial arts, self-defense and massage therapy.

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I have a B.S in Physical Education and a Black Belt in an eclectic martial art. I am also a certified Fitness Therapist through ISSA and a massage therapist. I can assist with questions regarding hiring a health and wellness professional as well as growing and succeeding in the field for those already working in it.

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B.S. in Physical education, Black Belt, ISSA certfified Fitness Therapist.

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