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In my very recent massage guides, I shared my tips on massaging your back and shoulders. Today, my focus is the neck and spinal region and little fact here that neck is the second most stressed region after your back. Have you ever noticed that whenever you feel tired at the office or after a workout, you tend to stretch your back, raise your shoulders or turn your neck, and it does give a bit of relief?
A simple yet effective neck massage can prove to be incredibly relaxing and rejuvenating. In this guide, I’ve shared some of my personal rules and techniques that have therapeutic effects on your body as well. You will definitely feel instant relief from a chronic headache, neck pain, and overall bodily stress.
Though you can try these techniques on your own, I recommend taking the assistance of a family member for more relaxing results. Before we begin with the guide, have a quick go through these simple rules.
Rules to Remember
- Don’t rush into things. Avoid quick rubbing over the neck, instead, be gentle and gradual.
- If you have severe neck pain or a neck injury, prefer visiting a professional massage therapist. Sometimes, if the injury is too severe, it may aggravate the condition.
- Make sure that the massage is not painful. It must be cozy and feel good. If it’s done harshly or quickly, your partner will feel uncomfortable and tensed. This kills the actual purpose of a relaxing massage.
- It’s better to stay away from the bony region around the neck as bones don’t Instead, they are pain-sensitive. Try to focus more on the fleshy and cartilaginous areas.
Massaging the Neck with Simple Techniques
1: Clip & File
This is the basic method for massaging the neck. As you know that the muscles located in your neck region are quite delicate, small and soft, we need to use fingertips only. To do this, clip and file your fingernails below the fingertips. Then trip and file the nails to ensure that they don’t scratch or damage the skin.
2: Drape Method
Drape one hand over each of the shoulders of your partner and keep them as close to his neck. Now start squeezing the trapezius gently in between your fingertip and the heel of your hand. Make sure that your thumbs are beside index finger, and they stay out of the way. While you are squeezing, hold the squeezed area for a few seconds and then gradually release it. Repeat the process is going up towards the ears and then come down back towards the shoulders again.
3: C-Shape Extensor Technique
I’ve already discussed this technique in my shoulder massage post. However, just to give you a quick update, stand on the right side of your partner, make a C-shape with the left hand and drape it over the back of his neck. Now press into the sides of the neck using your fingertips and thumbs.
4: Kneading the Base of Skull
For a finishing touch, kneading the base of the skull could potentially release all of the stress and tension. The extensors are basically the muscles attached to the head, and when the neck region is strained, they may result in a severe headache. To carry out this technique, cup your hand around the base of the skull and the other hand on the forehead. Now move your finger in circular motion and press gently into the skull as you continue to knead. Repeat the process for a few minutes. Change your side and repeat the process again.
Always start off with light pressure and then progressively go deeper as your partner begins to relax. You can use a heat balm or oil at the end to make the effects for a longer duration.