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We curl the head, neck, and shoulders up so often in Pilates. Unfortunately, neck tension goes hand-in-hand with this movement for many people. How can we prevent this? Let's look at the Chest Lift on the Mat as an example.
Interlace your fingers or nest one palm in the other palm so you can fully support the weight of your head. Maybe it helps to view it like holding a bowling ball in a basket.
Reach the elbows far away and allow your mid-back to broaden. This will help release tension from the upper trapezius. Retract your head into your hands and be sure to keep the back of the neck long.
Avoid pushing the head forward on the way up. I know- it's tempting! But don't do it! : )
As always, move only in a range where your neck is the most comfortable. There's no need to overstay your welcome in an exercise. Just a few repetitions with great form and no pain will do your body so much more good!
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