Build Neck and Shoulder Strength to Stay Healthy for Football

STACK expert Robert Harris explains how to build neck and shoulder strength to prevent injury during a grueling football season.

Bengals Tackle

Needless to say, football is an extremely physical game. NFL players play 20 games each year (pre-season and season), plus playoff games if they're lucky. This adds up to around 1,200 minutes of brutal contact. To stay healthy throughout each grueling season, you need to make neck and shoulder workouts a regular part of your training. (Learn about the keys to football training.)

Strong neck and shoulders play important roles in preventing injury from contact. If a receiver comes across the field and gets laid out, strong neck muscles are the only thing preventing a neck injury or even a concussion. On the opposite end, the player making the tackle needs to have strong shoulders to be able to withstand the force of the hit.

Below is a neck and shoulder program designed for football players. Use a neck machine if one is available. If not, a partner providing manual resistance will suffice. Remember that injury prevention is the primary goal of strength training.

Football Neck Workout

Neck Flexion - 2x10

  • Flex neck forward against resistance

Neck Extension - 2x10

  • Extend neck backward against resistance

Neck Lateral Extension - 2x10 each way

  • Extend neck sideways against resistance

Football Shoulder Workout

Photo: cincyjungle.com


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Topics: FOOTBALL | CONCUSSION | FOOTBALL WORKOUTS | SHOULDERS | WORKOUTS | INJURY PREVENTION | INJURY | RECEIVER | FOOTBALL PLAYERS | FOOTBALL TRAINING | NECK MUSCLES | STAY HEALTHY