Top Tips For Neck Building – No More Pencil Neck!
Best Neck Building Exercises: Intro
The current Mr. Olympia measures in at 18.5″. The legendary Lou Ferigno…19″ and Jay Cutler (4 time Mr. O) an impressive 19.5″. Now those are some thick necks!
If you have ever wondered how some guys achieve neck growth that can rival that of a tree trunk, then you will want to read on….
The benefits of having a well developed neck.
A well developed neck can reduce everyday neck pain, headaches and tension, improve a poor posture, eliminate a stiff neck, stabilize the spine, protect the neck from injury and decrease the incidence of sport related concussions. But, that’s not all..
A thick, muscular neck (according to my wife) appears powerful, sexy and confident. Complimented by a square set of shoulders, balanced by a well sculpted upper body and beefy legs, a well developed neck will be the finishing touch on a solid, built physique.
Who can benefit from having a strong neck?
Everyone can benefit from strengthening all the muscles of the neck including the deep neck flexor muscles. These are the muscles responsible for holding your head up and by developing your neck, these muscles in turn will become stronger making tasks easier. A strong neck is particularly beneficial for anyone engaging in contact sports. If rugby, football, wrestling, boxing, MMA, hockey, Nascar or soccer fall under your sport of choice, than it would be in your best interest to strengthen and build the neck muscles and those muscles that support it. If your passion is competitive bodybuilding, a strong, thick neck will compliment your physique by emphasizing your V-taper while accentuating your back and shoulders.
A strong neck will also benefit individuals engaging in everyday activities such as working on the computer, providing general care to your children, gardening, shoveling snow, carrying in groceries or even riding a roller coaster (not an everyday activity but you get the point.) Not to mention the fact that your chances of getting a whiplash will be greatly decreased should you find yourself in a traffic collision (or on a crazy roller coaster ride!)
How do I go about building the muscles in my neck?
There are some gyms that house exercise equipment made specifically for the neck but many don’t. The reason for this is that if not executed with proper form or by not gauging the weight correctly a neck injury could result. As a personal trainer, strength trainer and bodybuilder, I have personally never used equipment to build my neck muscles nor have I ever recommended such exercises to my clients. Instead it is my firm belief and experience (my neck measures 18 inches) that by working the muscles of the shoulders and through natural tension associated with lifting a strong, thick neck develops.
Best neck exercises for building a muscular neck safely.
In my opinion the exercises that work best to develop the neck muscles include: dumbbell shrugs, upright rows, barbell shrugs, overhead presses and side lateral raises. These exercises are considered the 3 main mass builders for building the neck and shoulder muscles. That’s right… keep the emphasis on the shoulder muscles, focusing particularly on the trapezius muscle. [ Best Exercises for the Trapezius Muscles ] By keeping all the movements strict, with use of heavy weight and high reps (8-10) you will begin to see results in no time.
The good news…
The good news is that overtime building solid muscle on your frame will lead to a big, thick neck. Have you ever seen someone with a muscular upper body and a pencil neck? Probably not. Most bodybuilders have a neck that is large in size from all the tension of lifting and if you keep your training consistent, maintain correct form and focus on the correct muscles you will enjoy the same developmental muscle gains too.
Written by Mate Radocaj
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