The cervical great locks {What to stretch second}

In the post called The pelvis great locks I made the point that one should start and support any flexibility pursuit by tackling the hip flexors and the glutes. I want to carry that train of thought further.

We talked about three main criteria for deciding the order of stretching: muscle size, tension and proximity. Following these for the second time, what we get are the Trapezius and the Sternocleidomastoid. These are the cervical “great locks”.

The Trapezius is a huge muscle that covers the whole upper back. It resembles the Lats but this time coming from the Thoracic spine and finishing at the Clavicle. It will be a key muscle when releasing the scapula that, coupled with the pelvis, are the big pendulums of the spine. It normally holds a lot of tightness due to the stress in our lives.

250px-Trapezius_Gray409.png
The Trapezius muscle.

On its part, one could say that releasing all of the neck muscles is crucial, but I want to focus on one. Let’s see the neck muscles first.

neck-muscles-diagram.jpg
The anterior neck musculature. Don’t they seem like the hip flexors, only facing upwards?

Even though sometimes we don’t realize it, muscle names actually have a logic. The sternocleidomastoid is called like that because it connects the sternum and the mastoid process (at the jaw). This means that this muscle is like a bridge between your neck and the rest of your body, holding a lot of tension and restricting the range of motion of our neck.

250px-Sternocleidomastoideus.png
The Sternocleidomastoid.

Even though stretching these two muscles might not seem as having a great impact on your overall flexibility, once you propose a road to your body, it cannot but to create a bridge. The last post will be about that.

Click here to see the next post in this series.


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2 thoughts on “The cervical great locks {What to stretch second}

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