Neck Arthritis Exercises

Updated April 17, 2017

Neck arthritis exercises can help improve the fitness and coordination of your neck muscles by using muscles that are usually neglected and overworked. The purpose of doing these exercises is to decrease your pain level, improve and/or restore your neck muscle strength, and correct postural strain. Neck arthritis exercises are quick and easy to do.

Correct Postural Form

While sitting or standing, in order to gain maximum benefits from your neck arthritis exercises, you need to have proper form. The correct postural form involves having your ear directly above your shoulder. Move your chin down toward your chest to gain this alignment before starting any exercise. Maintaining this proper form will reduce your chances of injuring yourself, according to


Neck arthritis exercises involving stretching can be done either standing up, lying down or sitting. A commonly used exercise done lying down is known as nodding. Lay on a flat surface (it's up to you if you want to use a pillow). According to Physiotherapy Site, rotate your head forward to rock your neck. Do not lift your head off of the surface. Hold. Repeat.

Neck flexion is a useful neck arthritis exercise. Either sitting or standing, move your head forward so that your chin touches your chest. Hold for five seconds. Return to original position. Repeat.

Neck side bends can be done anywhere and are helpful in keeping your neck area supple and pain free. These can be done either sitting or standing. According to FitMap, tilt your head sideways so that your left ear moves toward your left shoulder. Do not rotate your head or raise your shoulder. Hold. Repeat.


Isometrics are used to strengthen your neck muscles, and involve no physical movement of your neck. A useful neck arthritis exercise can be done in the sitting position. Place your left hand on your left cheek. Gently move your head into your fingers while trying to look over your left shoulder. Do not move. Hold for five seconds. Repeat. Do the same routine for the opposite side, according to

Shoulder Shrugs

This neck arthritis exercise can be done either sitting or standing. Used throughout the day, it will help cure poor posture and is beneficial for low neck pain and/or neck arthritis. According to, shoulder shrugs involve squeezing your shoulder blades together while rolling your shoulders back and down. Rotate your hands outward. Pull your chin straight back like you are trying to touch your chin to your neck. Do not move your head. Breathe in as you are squeezing your shoulder blades. Hold for 10 seconds. Repeat.

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About the Author

Crystal Welch has a 30-year writing history. Her more than 2,000 published works have been included in the health and fitness-related Wellness Directory, Earthdance Press and Higher Source. She is an award-winning writer who teaches whole foods cooking and has written a cookbook series. She operates an HON-code-certified health-related blog with more than 95,000 readers. Welch has a B.B.A. from Eastern Michigan University.