It has been said that, “The worth of a man can be determined by the thickness of his neck.”
How much truth the above quote actually contains is debatable. Yet, the benefits of having a strong and flexible neck are not, so working on neck muscles should be a priority, not an afterthought. With that in mind, here are a few exercises to train and strengthen your neck.
When beginning a neck training regime, the first consideration must be injury prevention. Thus, stretching the neck out is quite important.
To stretch the neck, begin by sitting or standing in a relaxed manner. Then drop your chin towards your chest and hold for 15 seconds. Now bring your neck back to a relaxed position. Then look as far as you can over your right shoulder and hold for a 15 count. Repeat looking over your left shoulder.
Next, drop you head backwards and look up at the sky. Hold for 15 seconds. After the 15 count, return to a relaxed and upright position. Then drop you ear to your right shoulder and hold for 15 seconds. Repeat with left ear.
Your neck should feel loose. Now, we are ready to develop the neck.
A great way to train the neck is through manual resistance exercises. To perform, place your hand or have a partner place their hand on the front, back and sides of your neck. Apply pressure while using your neck to resist the pressure. Hold for 15 seconds on each of the four areas.
Another great neck exercise is the barbell upright row. To perform, hold a barbell with the desired weight in an upright position, hands shoulder width apart. Then lift the bar upwards towards your chin. Keeping the bar as close to your body as possible. Slowly return the bar to the starting position. Three sets of eight to ten repetitions.
Barbell shrugs are another solid exercise to develop your neck. Again, begin by holding a barbell in front of you in an upright position while your grip the bar hands shoulder length apart. Raise your shoulders up as high as possible. Then slowly bring the bar back to the starting position. Three sets of eight to ten repetitions.
By incorporating the above training, it’s possible not only to increase the flexibility and strength of their neck, but also to prevent potential injury while working out the body’s most neglected muscles.
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