NECK

Head circles

Head circles are fantastic for the neck. This is one of the most beneficial exercises for academic students and those involved long hours in front of a computer. 

1. When you perform the head circles you may feel and hear popping sensations and sounds as the articulating processes of the cervical vertebrae are moved around. 

2. Be sure, if you feel any pains, to move around the pains. Do not rotate directly into your pain. Those with nerve and disc issues should proceed with caution and consult with your doctor. 

3. Stand in the Tadasana. Breathe into your nose and out you nose. Then circle your head 10 times. Circle the head completely around the neck. While breathing try to breathe out as you title your head forward. Then breathe in as you title your head back. 

4. Keep your back straight at all times. Do not slouch the spine. Simultaneously do not tilt the torso forward when the head rotates forward. 

5. Move slowly and smoothly while feeling your neck throughout the exercise. After you complete 10 switch directions. This is a very pleasant exercise and may be practiced for more repetitions if desired.

Hand to Head

Hand to head is an excellent exercise for relieving the point where the neck meets the shoulder. This is one of the first points to achieve tension when we start our adult life. Regular practice of this exercise will aid in the onset and removal of any pains.
1. Do not force this stretch. Perform it gently by allowing the weight of the arm to stretch the head down to the side. DO NOT PULL. 

2. Once your head is fully rested to the side check your posture. Your back should be straight. Avoid slouching. Maintain the left arm onto the floor space behind you. 

3. Then take a deep breathe in. As you breathe in notice how the breath begins to stretch the point where the neck meets the shoulder. When you breathe out relax the head to the side. Breathe slowly and deeply to open the space where the shoulder meets the neck. 

4. Then when comfortable take a deep breathe in and then breathe out as you rotate the left shoulder back. Do not be explosive with your breath. When you are ready slowly come out of it as you breathe in. Then be sure to repeat the other side.

Ear to Right Knee

This is one of the best stretches to target the side of the neck. Left ear to right knee is most effective after upper body preparatory postures, salutation or strength work. Starting with a well warmed up neck is best. 

1. Start by lying on your back. Hold your knees onto your chest. Hug your knees with the arms while holding the elbows. 

2. Breathe in and then and then breathe out as you hug your knees. At the same time post the left ear to the outside the right knee. 

3. Hold for a comfortable period of time. Do not force the stretch. As you breathe in slowly lower your head back. Then breathe out and switch sides. This is a great stretch before doing shoulder and head stands.
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