Quick Tip: The Sub-Occipital Stretch

Posted by on Nov 5, 2014 in Stretches

This week we have another video about neck health, which includes a great Active Isolated Stretch. The focus is on the small muscles that flex the head backwards. As a group they are called the suboccipital muscles. They are naughty little muscles that are tight on most people and plague many with aches and pain. If you work at a desk, it’s safe to assume your suboccipitals could use some help. So check out the video and let us know what you think!

Please Read:
It is very important that one understands two simple concepts when doing Active Isolated Stretching (AIS). Please view this video before trying this stretch.

This stretch is not for people experiencing sharp pain or those who have neck injuries. This is for those who have tight or achy necks. If you are experiencing sever sharp pains please call us to set an appointment with one of our specialists.

If you feel sharp pain while doing this exercise, stop and consult an expert.

This stretch is great for those who get tension headaches. I could also help with migraines (not while the migraines are active.)

Basic instruction:

  • Remember to breathe
  • Go slowly
  • Try to stretch the head away from the neck (head flexion not neck flexion)
  • Hold each stretch for no more than 1 second
  • repeat each stretch 8-12 times
  • for the first 5 passes don’t go quite to the end range
  • stop the stretch before pain
  • move further each time – again, stop before pain
  • always help the stretch by using your muscles to pull you deeper into the stretch
  • switch and repeat on opposite side
  • enjoy