A study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology found that the five moves below dramatically reduced neck pain and increased neck strength in female office workers. For the best results, complete at least three sessions a week. (A session consists of three sets of three of the moves listed here; for each set, repeat the exercise ten to 12 times.)
1. Shoulder Shrug
Stand, holding a pair of two-pound dumbbells at your sides. Keeping your neck straight, slowly lift up your shoulders toward your ears and lower them again. Repeat.
2. One-Arm Row
With a dumbbell in your left hand, stand at the left side of a knee-high workout bench. Set your right knee on the bench and bend at the waist, setting your right palm on the front of the bench for balance. Your left arm should be straight, palm facing in, with the weight hanging toward the ground. Slowly pull up the weight toward your chest, then gently lower and repeat. Switch sides and repeat with the opposite arm.
3. Upright Row
Stand holding a weight in each hand, resting the weights on your thighs, palms facing your body. Bending at the elbows, slowly lift up the dumbbells to chest height (your elbows should point slightly up, not straight out to either side). Keep the weights close to your body and your neck relaxed and straight. Lower gently and repeat.
4. Reverse Fly
Reposition your bench so it's at a 45-degree angle to the floor. With a weight in each hand, straddle the seat and press your chest against the raised end of the bench. Extend your arms toward the floor, palms facing in. Keeping your elbows slightly bent, extend the weights out to your sides until your arms are parallel to the floor. Slowly lower and repeat.
5. Shoulder Abduction
Stand holding the weights at your sides, pressed against your thighs. With your elbows slightly bent, extend the weights out to your sides until your arms are parallel to the floor, palms down. Keep your neck straight and relaxed. In a smooth motion, lower and repeat.
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