How to Use an Inversion Table for Neck Pain: Step-by-Step Exercises

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Inversion tables are becoming increasingly popular as people seek them out to help with exercise routines, relaxation, spinal decompression, and to relieve back pain. They are not suitable for everyone, and it is advised that you always consult your doctor before beginning inversion therapy.

If you are suffering from neck pain, then there are a few different exercises you can try while on your inversion table to help relieve the tension and discomfort. Keep reading to find out how to use an inversion table for neck pain. 

A Note for Beginners

If you are new to inversion therapy, then you should always build up your inversion levels and time spent on the table slowly. Get used to the feeling of being on your table by spending a minute at the smaller inversion angles at the beginning, and in between each minute of inversion, allow yourself a full minute of being upright again before inverting again.

Play music if it helps you to relax while you are on your table. Concentrate on your breathing and the feeling of your body stretching and also the difference in how your body feels from the inverted position to the upright position.

Exercises for Neck Pain

Inversion therapy has the best results when employed regularly, so rather than trying to remain inverted for a long period, try to use your table more often for shorter periods. 

Exercises for Neck Pain

Tension or a pinched nerve usually causes neck pain, whether you’ve been sitting in the same position for too long at work, have bad posture, or have had an accident. Sometimes pain felt in your neck can actually be caused by tension elsewhere in your back so these exercises are designed to stretch your whole spine and torso, as well as your neck.

Inversion therapy works by releasing your body from the everyday pressures of gravity, and by using gravity in the opposite direction, you will help your whole body to stretch out fully. Your spine will experience spinal decompression meaning all of the vertebrae can open up and relieve pressure, allowing for better circulation and muscle and joint relaxation.

Exercise One

This exercise concentrates on specifically stretching the neck area, helping to relax all of the tense muscles there.

  1. When it comes to how to use an inversion table for neck pain using this exercise, you must find an inversion angle that you feel comfortable with (less experienced users should invert less).
  2. With your right hand, reach across to the left side of your head and gently pull your head towards your right shoulder.
  3. Depending on your experience level, stay in this position for one to five minutes.
  4. Come out of the stretch and return to a horizontal position, allowing yourself a one-minute break.
  5. Invert again and repeat the exercise on the other side.
  6. Have another one-minute break in the horizontal position.
  7. If you feel comfortable, increase your inversion level slightly, and repeat.

Exercise Two

This exercise will help stretch the sides of your abdominals and also provide a great shoulder stretch.

  1. Once again find an inversion angle that suits your experience level.
  2. Raise your arms above your head and attempt to curve your body into the shape of the letter C, bringing your hips and shoulders closer together.
  3. Hold this position for one to five minutes.
  4. Come out of the stretch and return to a horizontal position, allowing yourself a one-minute break.
  5. Invert again and repeat the exercise on the other side.
  6. Have another one-minute break in the horizontal position.
  7. If you feel comfortable, increase your inversion level slightly, and repeat.
Exercise Three

Exercise Three

This exercise will help stretch the muscles in your torso.

  1. Invert to a comfortable angle and relax.
  2. Raise your right arm above your head and move the left arm to lie across your torso.
  3. Twist your shoulders and hips to one side, keeping your body center on the bed.
  4. Using your left arm, pull yourself into a greater stretch, being careful not to overexert yourself or push yourself too hard.
  5. Come back to the horizontal position and allow yourself to relax for one minute fully.
  6. Invert again and repeat the exercise on the other side.
  7. Have another one-minute break in the horizontal position.
  8. If you feel comfortable, increase your inversion level slightly, and repeat.

Exercise Four

This exercise allows a full body stretch which will help to realign your spine. It should help release tension in your lower, middle, and upper back muscles and help to decompress your neck and shoulders.

  1. Invert to the greatest angle that you feel comfortable and relax into the position for a few moments.
  2. Keeping one arm around your head, raise the other arm above your head and stretch it as far as it will comfortably go for one to five minutes.
  3. Go back to the horizontal position and relax for at least one minute.
  4. Invert again and repeat the exercise on the other side.
  5. Have another one-minute break in the horizontal position.
  6. If you feel comfortable, increase your inversion level slightly, and repeat. Or you can also repeat this exercise by raising and stretching both arms. 

Inversion Therapy for Your Neck Pain

In summary, there are a few different exercises you can do to try and help alleviate your neck pain. The main thing to remember is to always listen to your body. Don’t overstretch yourself, don’t try and invert for too long, or use inversion therapy at all against your doctor's recommendation.

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