Neck Pain Recovery Guide

Neck tightness is one of the most common problems any athlete, or office worker for that matter can complain of. The reason for this is that this area of the spine isn’t stabilised by the rib cage or hips. This means that the muscles around the neck are constantly working to help support the head and also assist in any arm movements.

With any minor muscular injury it is crucial to stick to the well known RICE (Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation) protocol. 

#1. Self Massage

  • Be very careful working on the neck, as being near the spine there can be serious consequences
  • Using the foam roller on the upper trapezius will help loosen the neck as it is one of the bigger muscles which supports the neck
  • With your arms above your head roll over the foam roller to begin to release the traps

#2. Mobilisation

  • Again for the mobilisation it is important to concentrate on the upper trapezius
  • This is one of the easier mobilisations as finding tightness in the upper traps is fairly straight forward
  • With a tennis ball, apply pressure to the upper trap and side bend your neck to the opposite direction go as far as comfortable for 10-20 reps.

#3. Stretching

  • Stretching the neck is relatively simple as the picture shows
  • All you need to do is side bend the neck to the opposite direction of the muscle you are aiming to stretch
  • Using your hand to apply pressure will allow for a better stretch, hold for 20-30 seconds, 4 times.

#4. Kinesiology Taping

  • Firstly you need to cut and anchor a Y strip to the spine.
  • Side bend your neck to one direction and lay the first of the tails along the stretched muscle with 0% stretch. Repeat on the other side
  • With a smaller I strip, apply with 50% stretch across the neck, this app should have a 'hugging' feeling.

#5. Strengthening

  • To strengthen the neck in early stages of recovery it is recommended to use a stretch band.
  • Tie a stretch band to the door and place around your forehead, it will look stupid but it's worthwhile!
  • With the resistance of the band side bend your neck away from the band and control back to neutral, aim for 4 sets of 10-12 reps.

#6. Return to Sport

  • Once you are feeling stronger, double check with a medical professional and you will be ready to get back to sport.

Remember, if problems persist please seek help from a medical professional. If you have any questions regards injuries please feel free to email us on: and we will be able to help where we can!