Whiplash Injury, Whiplash Exercises, and Whiplash Stretches
Whiplash Rehab & Whiplash Stretches with the NecksLevel Pro
What is Neck Whiplash Rehabilitation?
MAfter a whiplash injury, serious neck pain and stiffness is common but can be treated with the right neck rehab program to get you back to freedom from neck pain.
What is a whiplash injury? A neck injury caused by a sudden and forceful movement of the head and neck during an accident or sporting event. Whiplash sufferers report neck pain, neck stiffness, spasms, and headaches.
Your options for whiplash rehab: Your medical provider may recommend physical therapy or chiropractic treatment, rest, and/or home exercises to help your neck. For more serious cases we recommend getting professional help from a therapist (check out our Clinic Locator to find a NecksLevel provider). Otherwise, whiplash rehab from home is common and effective with the right exercises and equipment.
Why is my neck stiff after a whiplash injury? After a whiplash injury, the neck muscles are very tense and often in spasm. Neck muscle tightness limits your neck range of motion, so moving your head will be difficult and often painful. The good news is that there are whiplash exercises which will help relax the neck and build up your neck strength.
Whiplash Rehab: Where to Start with Neck Exercises
MIt's difficult to know where to start the healing journey after a neck whiplash injury. Here's a few simple places to begin:
Heat for Whiplash Rehab: A hot pack for the neck, or a hot shower can help relax your tense, sore neck muscles. This is a great first step. Do this regularly if you find it helpful.
Gentle Whiplash Neck Stretching: Here's a video of a great head turning exercise to help stretch out your tight neck muscles. The same exericse is even better on the NecksLevel Pro for a deeper stretch (video) after a neck whiplash injury - see below.
MWhiplash Neck Isometrics: What are isometrics? They're a simple, but effective way to strengthen the neck. We want to start gently strengthening the neck muscles to help them recover and get strong again. There's many ways to do them, but to start we recommend lying down, with you head supported. Here's what isometrics look like on the NecksLevel Pro:
M*Important Note on Whiplash Rehab* It's important to start slow and be gentle early on in the neck whiplash recovery journey. Your neck is on high alert and can be easily aggravated with too much activity too soon. This is where getting proper guidance in a clinic or from home is very important. Below is a video highlighting three foundational exercises on the NecksLevel Pro which serve as a great place to start stretching and strengthening the neck.
Whiplash Rehab Stretching & Neck Exercise on the NecksLevel Pro
This depends on the severity of the whiplash injury. For less severe cases (fender benders, falls, etc.) you can expect 2-4 weeks. However for more severe cases such as high speed car crashes, the recovery window can be several weeks to months.
Yes. From professional sports teams, physical therapy clinics, to people at home just like you, the NecksLevel Pro is the tool of choice for neck whiplash rehab.
Straining of the neck muscles is common during a whiplash injury, but will heal with time and rehab. For more severe whiplash injuries, the ligaments of the neck may be sprained as well. Having your medical provider check for neck fractures will also be important in moderate to severe cases.
For this, your medical provider should check the Canadian C-Spine Rules. Here are some of the basics for determining if someone needs a neck X-ray:
-65 years old or older -Experienced a Dangerous Mechanism (fall from a height, axial load to the head, high speed car crash) -Have paresthesias (numbness/tingling) in the arms/legs
This is a decision for a skilled medical provider. Don't feel like you need to make this decision yourself.
Please read the question and answer above: "Do I need to get an X-ray after a neck whiplash injury?"
Assuming you do not have a neck fracture or other severe injuries, it is safe to move your head, although it may be painful. Providers like physical therapists will suggest doing gentle stretches to begin improving your neck range of motion, provided it is not too painful.
We recommend seeing a skilled orthopedic physical therapist.
To quickly find a skilled provider, check out our NecksLevel Clinic Locator. We have a community of NecksLevel Certified Clinics (NCC) that offer neck whiplash rehab with the NecksLevel Pro. If you don't see a NCC near you, call your local physical therapy or chiropractic office.
As part of your whiplash rehab, you'll want to perform stretches for improving rotation (turning your head left and right), flexion/extension (looking up and down), and sidebending (ear to shoulder). Here's our NecksLevel stretching video playlist if you want to learn the movements.
The best neck exercises for whiplash rehab are a combination of neck strengthening and stretching movements. We recommend starting with gentle stretching exercises like this and working up to isometrics and other strengthening exercises!
The NecksLevel Pro is a neck stretcher, and neck strengthener all in one. The quick-change resistance bands make progressing your strength effortless. Plus, the gravity-eliminated neck exercises make it comfortable and easy to get out of neck pain and put your whiplash injury in the rearview mirror.