Here are two simple stretches which make a big difference to your neck and shoulders. Perfect if you’ve been staring at a screen or if you’re tense from a stressful day.
You can do this stretch standing or sitting which makes it a good one to do at your desk:
- Make sure your shoulders are relaxed
- Breathe in and reach up your left hand keeping it as close to your left ear as possible
- Bring your arm over the top of your head and bring your left hand to cover your right ear (or as near as you can get it)
- Let your head fall to the left side and push your head against the hand covering your ear. You will hopefully feel your neck muscles working as you push your head against your hand
- Make sure your right shoulder hasn’t crept up – it should still feel floppy and relaxed
- Release your hand and bring your arm back by your side
- Straighten your head and repeat using the right hand.
You need to be seated for this stretch. If you’re with small children, the windmill action of your arms can be turned into a game. My son is only 9 months so just making a ‘whoosh’ noise in time with my arms makes him giggle.
1. Find any comfortable sitting position and make sure you’re sitting with a straight back
2. Place your right hand on the floor with your fingers pointing away from your hips, there should be a slight bend in your elbow
3. Breathe in and lean over to the right: at the same time raise your left hand, keeping your arm straight and as close to your ear as possible
4. As you breathe out let your arm fall behind your head and return to the starting position
5. Place the hand of your left arm on the floor with your fingers pointing away from your hips and repeat steps 3 and 4 with your right arm.