Before attending the six-week program at The Lemons Center I'd been to physical therapy many times before. The programs were always too intense for my body and invariably left me worse off than I was before I started. It was frustrating and left me believing I couldn't get any help from any kind of physical therapy, let alone exercise.
Luckily I was referred to the program at The Lemons Center and learned a whole new way of relating to movement and my body. They started me off at a snail's pace and encouraged me to take it slow. They could tell I was the kind of person to over do it, and they were great about reminding me to pace myself and work my way up slowly.
While no set of exercises can be right for every person, most people living with migraine disease don't have the opportunity to go to this kind of individualized program. Therefore, I thought it might be useful for me to share the exercises I was given so you can get your doctor's okay to try them and see if they help you. The neck exercises can be especially helpful for people who experience migraine attacks.
Hold each stretch for 20 seconds and do each exercise twice.
- For more information about how to safely incorporate stretching into your pain management program, please read: Learn When and How to Stretch Effectively.
- The upper cervical flexion exercise is great for migraine-related neck pain.
- On a website called PTBuddy.com you can start an account and make a playlist of videos of most of these exercises.
- Download a file containing this information in a printable format, including photos and instructions, here: Gentle Stretching for Migraine Patients.
- Upper Cervical Flexion
- Levator Scapula Stretch
- (see also: Levator Scapula Stretch: Video)
- Cervical Scalene Stretch: Video
- Seated Chin Tuck: Video
- Caudal Glide
- Cervical Retraction
- Resisted External Rotation with Scapular Retraction
- Upper Limb Neural Tension Stretch
- Corner Stretch
- (see also: Corner Stretch: Video)
- Side Bend
- Piriformis Stretch
- Quadriceps Stretch
- Inner Thigh Stretch
- Cat Stretch
- Lower Trunk Rotation Stretch
- Hip Flexor Stretch
- Midback Rotation Stretch / Child's Pose
Content by Diana E. Lee.
DISCLAIMER: Nothing on this site constitutes medical or legal advice. I am a patient who is engaged and educated and enjoys sharing my experiences and news about migraines, pain and depression. Please consult your own health care providers for advice on your unique situation.