Practice 35 – Neck in Frontal Plane

Your Neck in Frontal Plane

Now we are going to look at how your neck moves in Frontal Plane.  It is very easy to do this incorrectly, so try to watch yourself in the mirror to monitor the movement, or you could film yourself and watch it back, to check whether you are keeping the correct alignment.

It is very important with the neck to get the movement, very precisely aligned in each plane.   because the muscles are so small, that the slightest misalignment, has a big impact on creating incorrect pressure on your muscle groups.  It is easy to miss the correct alignment whilst thinking you are doing it correctly.  

(You can try these movements sitting and standing)

1. To help make the movement accurate put your finger on the tip of your nose, now move your right ear towards your right shoulder and make sure your finger is not pushed down towards your chest, as this indicates you are slightly moving into Sagittal and not just staying in Frontal Plane

2. So, simply move your nose on that axis, your eyes should be staying looking forward. Also check yourself if you are starting to look towards the opposite side of the room, rather than directly ahead (with your head bent sideways towards your shoulder)  if you find yourself looking towards the opposite side of the room,  that’s a rotation mixed up with flexion, you do not want this to be happening!

3.  If your eyes start travelling up, this is also rotation, so keep the movement so that your eyes  are still looking at the horizon, but obviously, they’re tipping from one side to the other, and just go as far as it’s comfortable with your finger on your nose

4. Can you begin to feel your muscles immediately at the base of the skull?  You are really getting into the top cervical vertebrae (the bones in your neck), the muscles that connect the spine to the base of the skull and while there’s less movement in the lower part of the neck.

5. Now, do the same movement without your finger on your nose, but your nose is still on the axis.  You will probably find you get lower down in terms of your neck muscles. 

6.  Again, we don’t want you looking down towards the floor, simply side bend your neck with your ear going down to your shoulder

7. If you are sitting, to make the movement stronger, you can sit on the opposite hand, so if your left ear is going towards your left shoulder, sit on the palm of your right hand

8. Now repeat the whole process on the other side.  Do you notice if it is different on each side? 

9. Is right or left easier for the Frontal Side Bend?