Achey, creaky necks – 3 ways to combat the office “stiff neck”

Do you work at a desk or an office? Do you find yourself at about 3:30pm doing a few neck stretches or wriggling about to get comfortable? Don’t worry you are among 76% of Australians that feel the same thing.

This comes from a large study looking at pain in the work place, which found neck pain and stiffness to be the most common complaint. So, if the majority of all workers feel this pain what can we do about it? See below 3 ways that Andrew Alexander from Physio Connex, Tuggerah, recommends to combat neck stiffness.


1. Set up your work station

The old adage of “good posture” is becoming something of the past which each new piece of research showing us that the best posture, is the next posture. Or put more simply, movement is key. Having a flexible workstation that you can set up to allow adjustment in seat height, screen height, keyboard and mouse position, or even standing. This allows our muscles and joints to stretch and contract, increasing blood flow and changing where the load is being carried.

Having your desk set up to make it easier for you to work is another great way to ease the pressure off your neck and shoulders. The 90-90 rule is the rule of thumb and can be easily applied to most work stations.


2. Have breaks to keep sharp

Breaks every 25mins have been shown to improve productivity and reduce pain. Only 2-5mins of movement and resetting your brain can help relax the muscles of the neck and shoulders and improve alertness.


3. Stretch out!

See below for some relieving movements which you can easily add into your 2-minute perk-up break. Hold each for 20sec and repeat 2-3 times. These areas are the most common regions that build tension that can cause pain.


If you need more help with a stiff and aching neck, give us a ring at Physio Connex on (02) 43145183 or send us an enquiry through this website.

For business owners or managers, we offer ergonomic assessments where we visit your staff on the job and offer feedback regarding their work station. Please give us a call on the above number or send us an email for more information.



Thoracic Rotation


Scapula stretch


Neck stretch

Wrist stretch (palm down)