Protect Your Brain With This Neck Workout

August 2, 2013 | Bryan McCall

Must See Sports Injuries Videos

Do you want to stay concussion-free during the football season? To potentially reduce your risk of a head injury, start training your neck.

Stronger neck muscles may reduce the concussive force from a blow by dissipating the force.

When you collide with an opponent, if your neck is weak, the full energy of the blow transfers to your brain. But if your neck is strong, it will stay rigid and protect your head to a greater extent from the force of the collision.

Training your neck should include standard extension flexion and lateral flexion exercises. However, to fully protect your brain, you also need to perform rotational exercises—which are often overlooked.

The following neck workout won't completely eliminate concussion risk. But it will reduce your chance of sustaining a season-ending head injury.

Neck Workout

Instructions: Start the neck workout at 12 reps of each exercise, holding each rep for two seconds. Increase the reps by two every two weeks. To add variation, perform the exercises lying on your side or stomach.

Neck Rotations

Lie with your back on a bench and your head hanging off in a neutral position. Slowly rotate your head from shoulder to shoulder.

Neck Flexion

Assume the same position as above. Tilt your head so your chin touches your chest. Slowly tilt your head back to the starting position.

Neck Lateral Flexion

Assume the same position as above. Tilt your head from side to side. Keep your shoulders down and your eyes fixed on the ceiling.

Read more:

Topics: PREHAB | CONCUSSION
Bryan McCall
- Bryan McCall, CSCS, is the performance director for the Michael Johnson Performance Training Center at SPIRE Institute (Geneva, Ohio). He has worked in the performance...
Bryan McCall
- Bryan McCall, CSCS, is the performance director for the Michael Johnson Performance Training Center at SPIRE Institute (Geneva, Ohio). He has worked in the performance...

Featured Videos

Tim Tebow's NFL Off-Season Workout Tim Tebow's NFL Off-Season Workout Views: 153,019
Path to the Pros 2015: Trae Waynes Path to the Pros 2015: Trae Waynes Views: 80,502
Path to the Pros 2015: Marcus Mariota Path to the Pros 2015: Marcus Mariota Views: 1,270,518
Load More

Resources

STACK Fitness

Everything you need to be fitter than ever

STACK Conditioning

Sport-specific conditioning programs

Coaches and Trainers

Tips and advice for coaches and trainers

Magazine

Latest issues of STACK Magazine

STACK 4W

Women's sports workout, nutrition and lifestyle advice

Gamer

Gaming, entertainment and tech news

Basic Training

Military-style training for athletes

News

Find the latest news relevant to athletes

Most Popular Videos

Peyton Manning Dumbbell Bench With 80+ Pounds Peyton Manning Dumbbell Bench With 80+ Pounds
Views: 43,626,320
Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied Drew Brees Will Not Be Denied
Views: 12,170,372
Colin Kaepernick's Core Workout Colin Kaepernick's Core Workout
Views: 896,683
Robert Griffin III Pocket Presence QB Drill Robert Griffin III Pocket Presence QB Drill
Views: 6,866,256
Ohio State Football Open Field Plyo Drill Ohio State Football Open Field Plyo Drill
Views: 9,501,395

Load More
More Cool Stuff You'll Like
6 Ways to Prevent Common Sports Injuries

6 Ways to Prevent Common Sports Injuries

As an Athletic Trainer and Strength coach, I'm often asked by coaches and personal trainers how to prevent injury in their athletes and clients. This...

The Future of Sports Injury Rehabilitation

The Future of Sports Injury Rehabilitation

5 Bodyweight Exercises to Prevent Baseball Injuries

5 Bodyweight Exercises to Prevent Baseball Injuries

What’s With the Stethoscope? Heart Murmurs in Athletes

What's With the Stethoscope? Heart Murmurs in Athletes

Avoid ACL Injuries in Softball with PREP

Avoid ACL Injuries in Softball with PREP

Coaches: Prevent Injuries With the Recovery Management Tool

Coaches: Prevent Injuries With the Recovery Management Tool

How to Prevent Hamstring Injuries

How to Prevent Hamstring Injuries

STUDY: Female Athletes Are at Higher Risk of Overuse Injuries

STUDY: Female Athletes Are at Higher Risk of Overuse Injuries

Sports Hernias: What You Need to Know

Sports Hernias: What You Need to Know

STUDY: Imaginary Exercise Helps You Recover Faster From Injury

STUDY: Imaginary Exercise Helps You Recover Faster From Injury

Dry Needling: Powerful, Drug-Free Pain Relief for Athletes

Dry Needling: Powerful, Drug-Free Pain Relief for Athletes

3 Steps to Alleviate a Sore Neck

3 Steps to Alleviate a Sore Neck

Connective Tissue: The Key to Preventing ACL Injuries

Connective Tissue: The Key to Preventing ACL Injuries

8 of the Most Ridiculous Off-Field Athlete Injuries of All Time

8 of the Most Ridiculous Off-Field Athlete Injuries of All Time

How to Train With Running Blisters

How to Train With Running Blisters

Achilles Tendon Ruptures: Prevention and Recovery

Achilles Tendon Ruptures: Prevention and Recovery

6 Stretches to Alleviate Lower-Back Pain

6 Stretches to Alleviate Lower-Back Pain

Basketball Players: Prevent Ankle Sprains With These 3 Exercises

Basketball Players: Prevent Ankle Sprains With These 3 Exercises

Quarterbacks: 4 Tips to Keep Your Throwing Shoulder Healthy

Quarterbacks: 4 Tips to Keep Your Throwing Shoulder Healthy

Predicting the Impact of DeMarco Murray's Hand Injury

Predicting the Impact of DeMarco Murray's Hand Injury

7 Ways to Fix Back Pain

7 Ways to Fix Back Pain

How to Keep Your Feet Healthy On and Off the Field

How to Keep Your Feet Healthy On and Off the Field

5 Things You Can Do to Prevent Muscle Injuries

5 Things You Can Do to Prevent Muscle Injuries

2 Ways to Fix Anterior Pelvic Tilt

2 Ways to Fix Anterior Pelvic Tilt

The Secret Weapon Powering Stephen Curry's Resurgence

The Secret Weapon Powering Stephen Curry's Resurgence

Megan Rapinoe’s Secret to Staying Healthy

Megan Rapinoe's Secret to Staying Healthy

4 Sports Massage Techniques to Relieve Tight Muscles

4 Sports Massage Techniques to Relieve Tight Muscles

How to Prevent Baseball Injuries During the Off-Season

How to Prevent Baseball Injuries During the Off-Season

6 Simple Tips to Prevent Knee Injuries

6 Simple Tips to Prevent Knee Injuries

Impressive Advances in ACL Rehab

Impressive Advances in ACL Rehab

Why Tommy John Surgery Is Ruining Pitchers

Why Tommy John Surgery Is Ruining Pitchers

Avoid Low-Back Pain With These 7 In-Season Exercises

Avoid Low-Back Pain With These 7 In-Season Exercises

3 Steps to Prevent Soccer ACL Injuries

3 Steps to Prevent Soccer ACL Injuries

How to Treat Piriformis Syndrome

How to Treat Piriformis Syndrome

Reducing Low-Back Pain: What You Need to Know

Reducing Low-Back Pain: What You Need to Know

Preventing ACL Injuries in Soccer Players

Preventing ACL Injuries in Soccer Players

10 Ways to Fix Back Pain

10 Ways to Fix Back Pain

Fix 3 Common Ankle Problems to Prevent Injury

Fix 3 Common Ankle Problems to Prevent Injury

4 Tips to Relieve Muscle Stiffness

4 Tips to Relieve Muscle Stiffness

5 Tips to Intelligently Train Through Lower Back Pain

5 Tips to Intelligently Train Through Lower Back Pain

6 Steps for Recovering From a Season-Ending Injury

6 Steps for Recovering From a Season-Ending Injury

Evan Gattis's Protection-Enhanced Catcher's Helmet

Evan Gattis's Protection-Enhanced Catcher's Helmet

Prevent ACL Injuries With This Hamstring-Focused Workout

Prevent ACL Injuries With This Hamstring-Focused Workout

Eliminate Elbow Pain with These 3 Methods

Eliminate Elbow Pain with These 3 Methods

How to Prevent In-Season Volleyball Injuries

How to Prevent In-Season Volleyball Injuries

YardBarker