Moving more with neck pain

  • Physical activity can help by easing stiffness and pain
  • When you stay active and keep your muscles conditioned, it’s easier to maintain good posture. Strengthening these muscles and practicing good posture may help relieve and/or prevent pain.
  • Exercise gets more blood pumping throughout the body, including in the upper back and neck, which can help relax muscles and improve mobility. Following exercise the release of endorphins in the brain may reduce some types of pain. You may also experience a boost in mood or energy.
  • When the body stays busy with physical activities, such as walking, exercising, housework or gardening your muscles get worked—including muscles in the neck. Working the muscles helps keep them strong and flexible to perform daily tasks. Staying active and doing different tasks throughout the day puts the neck through a wide range of motions and helps keep it in shape.
  • Being active will improve your flexibility and general fitness.
  • If your neck pain lasts a while, lack of movement can cause the muscles to become weak. This makes it more likely that you’ll strain them in the future. It’s important that you don’t rest for too long and keep moving your neck.

In order to help plan the next steps, think about the following:

  • How would you like things to be different?
  • What have you tried before to make yourself feel better and in less pain?
  • What were the good things about what you tried previously and what are the less good things about it?
  • What will you do next?

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