New bodybuilders very often overlook bodybuilding neck exercises. Others however, include neck exercises only at the end of a workout session and consider it to be of lower priority. They concentrated on building the abdominals, chest, biceps and shoulders to get the nice v-shaped sculptured look. However, their overall appearance does not look balanced, as the neck is “pencil-thin”. The neck is the most neglected muscle.
In clothing, a bodybuilder with a thin neck cannot be differentiated from a non-bodybuilder. A thick neck proudly announces that you have rippling muscles beneath the clothing. When you work on your neck muscles, other muscles such as the traps and back muscles are affected, which help contribute towards a more symmetric look from the back and front.
Isometric and head-harness exercises can build and strengthen the neck muscles. In a standing position, with your right hand on your head, contract your neck muscles and push your head to the right, and hold and resist for 15 seconds. Repeat a few times and then with the left hand. Next, with body hands behind your head, try to move your head back, hold and resist for 15 seconds.
Attach a suitable weight to the head harness. With your hands on your leg and when seated, raise your head in a semi-circular motion, as far as you can.
Another exercise is to lie down on edge of the bench, hold a flat barbell weight at your forehead with your hand, and raise your head in a semi-circle motion, as far as you can. Next, return to the original position and repeat a few times. Repeat, with your stomach on the bench and with the weight held at the back of your head.
The shrug is also another effective neck exercise to build the trapezius region and back of the neck. With a dumbbell in each hand, perform the shrug by moving your shoulder upwards.
Bodybuilding neck exercises should be included into your workouts. It is best to allocate a separate day to work on the neck muscles.
What you need for the Weighted Neck Flexion
1. A bench
2. A towel
3. A single weight
Instructions for the Weighted Neck Flexion
1. Wrap a towel around the flat weight.
2. Lay on the bench perpendicularly, with the area just below your shoulders resting on the bench.
3. Hold the towel-wrapped weight against your forehead, and use your hands to support the weight, but not to carry its weight.
4. Raise your upper body in a sit up like movement.
5. Use your neck muscles to lift your head until your chin touches your chest.
6. Lower your upper body until you’re fully extended.
How to build neck muscles
There are quite a few exercises for neck muscles that you can utilize in your workout routine, but we just want to look at a couple that you can use real quick.
Please keep in mind that you must use pre-caution in doing any neck muscle exercises. Warm up before doing any exercises. Rotate your neck from side to side. To increase your flexibility you will always want to use a full range of motion.
1. Neck Flexion
This is a very good exercise for neck muscles that provides good results. Sit down in a chair and move your head back to where you are looking up at the ceiling. Now, place your hands behind your head and use them to build up resistance.
2. Neck Extension
This is another simple, but effective exercise. Take your hand and put it up against your forehead. Looking straight ahead, begin applying resistance. Slowly move your head down until your chin comes against your chest.
Neck bridge (wrestlers bridge)
This is a controversial exercise that is highly productive when safely performed, yet can be very dangerous if not performed correctly. This is a very advanced exercise. You need to have very strong neck muscles just to be able to perform this movement.
This exercise should only be used by advanced athletes who need very strong neck muscles; such as boxers, wrestlers, martial artists, etc. You should get proper instruction from a knowledgeable coach prior to trying to perform a neck bridge.