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How can I reduce tightness in my traps and neck?

To reduce tightness in the traps/upper-back region, perform the levator scapulae stretch. The levator scapulae is a muscle that works together with the traps and becomes very tense and overactive in many people, leading to upper back and neck pain, as well as tension headaches.  Perform the levator scapulae stretch by following the technique described below. Stand with the feet pointed straight ahead and shoulder-width apart, keeping your knees slightly flexed. To start, place one arm behind the body and lower the same side shoulder. Next, while tucking the chin, bring the opposite side ear to the the opposite shoulder gently pulling with the opposite hand until stretch is felt in the back of the neck on the target side. Last, to enhance the stretch, rotate the chin down toward the opposite side chest muscles and hold for 30 seconds.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.