These are the 10 best exercises to get a thicker & bigger neck fast. If you currently have neck pain wait until you heal and start really slowly with these exercises. Training your neck is a great way to prevent neck pain, concussions, and bad posture. Try these neck exercises at home or in the gym for quick results.
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Your neck is supported by muscles like the Sternocleidomastoid, the traps, and deep-tissue fibers like the erector spinae. Training these muscles will not only increase the strength and thickness of your neck, but will also improve attractiveness ($) and it’ll provide many other benefits like improving your posture, reducing the risk of neck injury, concussions, and nagging neck pain. Neck pain is actually something that affects 1 in 3 people most likely because we sit and stare at screens all day and just like having a weak lower back can cause lower back pain, a weak neck can also cause neck pain. So today I want go over the best exercises that you can do to get a thicker, stronger neck in no time.
And first let’s start with a simple bodyweight neck-specific exercise that targets multiple layers of muscles that run along the back of your neck, isometric neck bridges. Now if you can’t do these or you feel uncomfortable doing these just yet, you can skip to the next exercise that can be used as an alternative and may be easier for some beginners. But you’ve probably seen neck bridges done by athletes like wrestlers and boxers (*). And although you can perform these kinds of bridges on a stability ball or a matt there is a concern that it can lead to an injury since your neck is extending while the disks in your spine are compressed. So instead a much safer alternative that many people swear by is a simple isometric hold. To do this you would start by sitting on a bench and then you would slide your whole body forward off the bench and position the back of your head and your neck on the bench. And all you do is hold that position for as long as you can. The goal is to work your way up to being able to hold it for at least 1 minute. And then you can even go higher from there to 2 minutes, or you can hold a weight on your chest instead, and just stick to increasing the weight within a 1 minute hold time.
Now instead of this isometric bodyweight exercise, it might make much more sense for you to do Neck Harness Extensions. You can buy one of these neck harnesses for super cheap on amazon and they really work great especially for targeting the back of the neck. You would take the neck harness and adjust it so it fits well around your head. Then you would loop the chain through plate weights and hook the chain on the other side so that the weights are hanging in the middle. And from there you’re simply going to slowly lower your chin towards your sternum, and then extend back up until your head is straight. Then repeat for reps. This is actually one of my favorite neck exercises because I can directly control the weight load and that gives me the ability to apply progressive overload by focusing on incrementally increasing the weight over time.
There is also another way you can do this exercise without the harness, prone weighted neck extensions. Here you would lay down flat on a bench with a towel and plate weight nearby. Make sure you slide to the edge of the bench so that your head is hanging off. Then take the towel and the plate and place them on the back of your head. From there you just lower your chin down towards your chest, then extend back up, and repeat for reps.
So the bridges and the extensions will help target the back of your neck, what about the front of your neck? Well for that we’re going to do stability ball neck crunches. To do this one you’ll start by grabbing a towel and a dumbbell and then taking a seat on a stability ball. From there walk your feet forward and roll your body down until your shoulder blades are on the ball and your head is hanging off. As you’re doing this you’re also going to take the towel and the dumbbell and place them on your forehead. Make sure that your chin is tucked back before starting your reps. Imagine pushing your jaw straight back towards your spine before beginning. Then you’re just going to lower your head down while supporting the dumbbells with your hands, and then flex your neck to crunch your head back up. And you’re going to repeat that for reps. Remember your hands should not be lifting the dumbbell, the work should be done by your neck muscles, your hands are just there to help balance the dumbell.
Using this same concept we’re going to also do an exercise that involves side neck crunches. (**) So you’re going to start by laying sideways on a bench. You want to be positioned high enough up the bench so that your head can hang off. Then take a dumbbell or a plate weight as well as a towel and hold it on the side of your head..