According to the World Health Organization, neck pain is the 4th highest cause of pain and disability world wide!
For me, this highlights how important it is to not just treat the presenting pain, but also try to prevent long term recurrence
Professor Gwen Jull was able to share some pearls of wisdom at the recent Australian Rheumatology Association scientific meeting.
She emphasized the importance of starting deep neck flexor exercises for all patients with neck pain. This is a simple “head nod” exercise which retrains some of the deeper muscles in the neck.
I have known for many years that it is important to retrain these muscles in patients with neck pain.
What I wasn’t aware of was how these deep neck muscles affected other parts of the body.
Failure to use your neck muscles appropriately can even affect your lower body!
Professor Jull’s research indicated that with any perturbations of the lower or upper body, these deep neck flexor muscles fail to activate in individuals with a history of neck pain.
This was news to me.
This research has emphasized how critical it is retrain this particular muscle group when a patient presents with neck pain.