Are you performing aggressive chin tucks due to your neck stiffness or neck pain with no results? Well, instead, try out this very simple and effective technique that works wonders.
Rather watch or listen?
As a physical therapist for the past 12 years and being in the movement industry for my entire career, I’ve realized that chin tucks are prescribed so often, aggressively. As always, it is important to address root causes of why forward head posture is happening in the first place.
In our previous videos and blogs, I’ve gone into more depth about forward head posture, and we have to think beyond just the mechanics of it. Is there an airway restriction? Is there emotional and nervous system dysregulation that’s contributing to poor posture? Aside from that, we want to also think about what forward head posture is doing to our nervous system.
Poor forward head posture can affect our vagus nerve (and other cranial nerves) and create more dysregulation in our nervous system. It can compress some of our spinal nerves as well as our cranial nerves, which have very important functions.
With that said, we have to think beyond just chin tucks and respect the nervous system.
One of my favorite basic techniques, which is a myofascial technique, stimulates the vagus nerve. It can ultimately help bring us into a better mechanical position and begin to reinforce optimal mobility in the spine.
To perform this exercise, think about where the vagus nerve exits right behind the ear. Take both hands and place them right behind the earlobe. Traction that tissue up in the direction of the ear.
Place your hand on the tissue, move the tissue over, tractioning it up very gently, and you will almost immediately or shortly thereafter feel a sense of relaxation that could come in the form of a sigh, a swallow, or a yawn — it could just feel like a simple sense of relaxation.
You should feel like you’re actually placing the neck in a more neutral position, creating a natural lengthening of the spine.
Once you assume that position, from there, move through a gentle range of motion — forward bending, backward bending, rotation, and even side bending. What that will do is give good feedback to the nervous system because you’re actually stimulating the receptors in the joints and signaling to the brain that this is a good position. This feels safe. This feels pain-free.
Begin to incorporate this exercise frequently throughout the day. It’s easy, only about a minute, and can be very effective.
Are you interested in seeing how we can help you with your neck pain, shoulder mobility, etc.? Schedule your 15-minute discovery session here: https://p.bttr.to/3qHXz8i
If you are ready to take action now, schedule here. https://p.bttr.to/3Qu7wRd
I hope this is helpful. If it was, please give it a like, share it, and subscribe to our Youtube Channel — The Movement Paradigm — for weekly tips on mindset, nutrition, and movement.
Other things that may interest you: