Yoga Stretches for Chronic Headaches | Relaxing Flow with Jen Hilman
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welcome my friends I’m Jen hilman
thank you so much for joining me today I have a special yoga flow for you
dedicated to relieving tension in the neck shoulders and head these stretches
are great for reducing chronic headache symptoms could even be helpful for those
of you suffering with migraines or other like pressure or tension headaches so
you can go ahead and like this video add it to your list of favorites you can
come back and find it any time thus following along with these stretches can
be extremely beneficial and helpful in relieving headache tension almost
immediately don’t forget to leave your comments
below I always love hearing your feedback and any engagement you have
with this video makes it easier for more people to find so go ahead and share the
love spread the love so more and more of you can enjoy these simple stretches to
relieve your chronic headache tension and we are going to engage in our
practice today from a comfortable sitting position so if it’s most
comfortable for you you can sit on the floor or you can just sit in a chair or
even on the edge of your couch wherever you feel comfortable that you can sit
nice and tall and lift up through your spine so find yourself in a good
comfortable seat and we will get ready to practice so from your seat we’ll just
start by taking some slow deep breaths breathing in breathing all the way up
into your neck and all the way up into your head feel the breath expand your
body well exhale completely really feeling
yourself condense and consolidate compressing all the air out of your body
and we’ll start with another inhale breathe into the back of your neck
breathe into the base of your skull let that breath expand and stretch your body
and exhale feeling yourself compress around your midline feel the density of
your body coming back into Center let’s take another full cycle of breath just
like this breathing into that space at the base of your skull and behind your
neck and exhale let it go and we’ll start to lower your right ear
to your right shoulder and notice if your left shoulder starts to come up
with you see if you can anchor that left shoulder down so the shoulders stay
level and just the head moves over towards the right side you’ll start to
feel a stretch across the left side of your neck for some of you you may even
feel a stretch down into the attachments in the shoulder joint so wherever your
body is tight wherever you’re holding tension that’s where you’re gonna feel
this stretch the most so wherever you’re feeling it send your breath to that
place as you inhale feel your body expanding and stretching a little wider
and as you exhale see if you can stretch just a little bit deeper now this time
bring your left hand to your left shoulder bring your right hand up and
over to the outside edge of your left head gently stretching your hands away
from each other you’ll deepen the stretch across the
left side of your neck so we’re just moving nice and slow here really taking
some mindful movements some deep steady breaths if you’re experiencing a
headache right now these stretches could be quite intense for you so that’s why
we’re just going slowly to really tune in with the breathing and be gentle with
your body as you work into these stretches
and from here you can keep your hands where they are just one simple movement
begin to rotate your chin down towards the floor and you can keep a gentle
traction between your hands just stretching your hands a little further
apart you’ll start to feel this stretch moving along the back edge of your neck
and maybe even across the top of your left shoulder just breathe into that
stretch you can roll your gaze back
looking straight forward it’s still stretching the head open towards the
right side now here we’re going to extend the left fingertips open towards
the left keeping your right hand on your head pulling the head towards your right
shoulder reach and extend energy out your left fingertips and you’re gonna
feel a stretch moving all the way down out the arm so again wherever you’re
feeling tight that’s where you’re gonna feel this stretch the most breathe into
that space inviting more space more length
Moore’s office roll your palm down towards the earth
you can continue that rotation turning your palm towards the back so your thumb
is pointing down towards the floor and you’re gonna feel this stretch rotate in
your arm then slowly begin to rotate your palm open towards the sky just feel
every degree of movement little by little as you open your palm towards the
sky we feel down stretch you can gently release your hands down
into your lap and just let your head roll forward towards the center let your
chin drop down towards your chest and just notice how you feel here the left
side may be feeling very stretchy very open you may also feel a little bit of a
recoil as the muscles along the left side of your neck come back into a more
neutral position so it may feel very vastly different than the right side
we’re going to open it up on that second side so you can begin to gently roll
your left ear to your left shoulder just moving nice and slow there’s no rush
here we’re really taking our time you can start just here letting the head
fall to the left notice if your right shoulder wants to start coming with you
it may be different from one side to the other we want to try and stabilize the
shoulder so those shoulders are on one level plane then it’s just the head that
moves towards the left side then you can bring your right hand to your right
shoulder you can bring your left hand up and over to the right side of your head
or to your right head now I’m just gently pressing your hands away from
each other start to deepen and accentuate the stretch on the right side
of your neck breathe into that space going slow and steady
feeling that stretch we can begin to roll your chin down towards the floor
slow and easy rotating your gaze downward you’ll start to feel this
stretch move into the back line along the edge of your neck if it’s very tight
at the base of your skull you may be feeling this stretch there in the
occipital x’ if your shoulders are very tight you might be feeling this stretch
more across the top of your right shoulder so again wherever you feel this
stretch that’s where the tightness is that’s where you need to breathe and
that’s where you need to open and you can roll your gaze back to the front
still opening that right side neck then we’ll slowly begin to extend your right
arm down and out so I’m not completely off to the side
a little bit more at a downward angle but actively reach through your
fingertips it’s almost as if someone was grabbing your hand and pulling on your
arm so it’s a very active stretch here stay consistent with your slow and
steady breath and we’ll begin to rotate your palm down towards the floor and
then all the way to the back so your thumb is pointing down feeling that full
rotation through the arm and just notice where the stretch goes as you move into
that rotation then we’ll slowly begin to roll your palm up towards the sky moving
slow and steady feeling the full range of motion
notice where the stretch arises breathe into the sensation allowing yourself to
open but then you can gently release bringing your hands down to your lap
just let your chin roll down to Center and notice how you feel here more open
more space more length along the sides of your neck from here just draw your
hands back behind your head interlace your fingers at the back of your head
and let your elbows relax down towards the floor feeling the weight of your
arms will give you a gentle traction along the back edge of your neck try to
keep sitting up tall through your spine lifting up so that it’s just the head
that’s folding forward then really try and let your arms be heavy hanging down
towards the Earth that’s what’s gonna give you this
stretch you need on the back of your neck maybe even feeling it down your
spine in some places we’re going to incorporate just a little bit of
movement here you can begin to rotate your chin right and left a little bit
again going slow and mindful in your movement
notice how this changes the stretch and if you come across a particular place
that feels especially good I feel free to spend a little extra time there so the whole focus on our practice today
a slow and conscious movement really paying attention to where the sensation
arises really experiencing the movement in the body then after you’ve done a
couple of rotations of your head right and left you can begin to make your way
back to neutral just letting your chin fold forward
still feeling the weight of your arms here we’re going to start to soften
through the chest so just letting your heart round forward slightly so the
shoulders begin to round forward you’re going to feel this stretch begin to move
down the length of your spine you may feel it behind your shoulder blades you
may feel it in the mid-back and you may start to feel the stretch moving all the
way down into your low back again wherever you feel it is where you need
it so breathe into that space and they’ll slowly release back to
Center you can roll your head back on top keeping your hands interlaced behind
your head with your elbows hugging forward towards your cheeks we start to
lean your head back into your hands reaching your elbows up towards the sky
moving into a little heart opener here as you stretch your elbows up let’s
start to feel a little stretch behind your shoulder as you lean your head back
you might start to feel a stretch across the front of your neck now let’s gently
roll your head back to Center coming all the way up to neutral and gently release
your hands down into your lap can close your eyes here for a moment and just
feel what you feel notice if there’s any relief more openness or more space we’ll
continue our journey you can just make a few little head rolls again moving slow
and steady here we don’t want to move into any jerky or quick sudden movements
we really go slow and mindfully here notice what you feel be with your body
be with the movement when you’re ready you can reverse directions rolling your
head the other way see if you can really feel each degree of rotation from the
front to the side to the back of your neck we feel the fullness of this stretch and then you can begin to float your
head right back up on top coming all the way up into a seat hopefully you are
already starting to feel some relief a little bit up stretching can go a long
way we’re gonna continue to work into the tops of the shoulders which is often
where some of that chronic tension can begin right there in the tops of the
shoulders and then it creeps up the neck and into the base of the skull so we’re
here we’re gonna wrap your right arm across your chest you can wrap your left
arm underneath that so you’re giving yourself a hug with the right arm on top
reaching your hands around towards your shoulder blades we’re going to gently
soften through your chest rotate your gaze down kind of nestling
your head between your two arms giving yourself a little rounding in your spine
you can’t really hug yourself here stretching across the tops of your
shoulders and stretching that space in between your shoulder blades then
lifting back up through Center from here with your elbows cross we’re just gonna
rotate your arms so your fingertips point to the sky and we’re gonna cross
your forearms as best you can eventually working to bring the hands palms
together so we’ve got our Eagle arms stretch your forearms towards the front
just rotate here so you can see we’re gonna press the forearms forward and as
you do you’re gonna feel a deepening stretch between the shoulder blades and
across the tops of your shoulders start to reach your elbows up towards the sky
lifting your heart we move into a bay back bend still stretching the elbows
the forearms forward away from your face we get a big deep stretch here and you
make your way back to Center and then we’ll just uncross your arms reach that
right arm all the way across your chest we’re going to use your left hand to
give you an assist pressing that right elbow across
so again just breathing into a stretch across the tops of the shoulders allowing that tension to release make your way back to Center can let
your arms come down maybe roll your shoulders around a few times and then
we’ll get ready to play on the other side so we’ll begin by wrapping your
left arm around your chest wrap your right arm underneath so we’re giving
yourself a hug then gently round your chest forward rounding through your
spine and let your gaze drop down between your arms as you round through
your spine reach your elbows forward and let your head nestle down between your
arms this will allow you to get a deeper stretch across the upper back I’m going
to breathe into that space you’ve created expanding your breath breathing
into your back body and coming back to Center roll your
spine back up and keeping your elbows cross we’re just gonna turn the
fingertips up towards the sky and we’re working to wrap the forearms
around each other eventually bringing your hands together coming into that
Eagle arms we’re gonna stretch your forearms forward really actively
reaching the forearms away you’re gonna feel that stretch along the back of the
left shoulder here then we start to take it into a lift
curling your heart towards the sky reaching your elbows forward reaching
the forearms away from your face we curl into a baby backbend breathe into the
space you’ve created saying yes to the work as we open up the chest and
shoulders four three two and one and gently return into Center can
uncross the arms and then we’re just reaching that left arm across your chest
bring your right hand to your left elbow and press that elbow around so I’m
giving yourself a nice big hug here stretching across the left shoulder we
want to breathe slow and steady feeling into that stretch enjoy this moment here
to be in your body and to care for yourself I’ll slowly release and just let your
arms come down into your lap if it feels good you can make some circles here
rolling the shoulders around a few times moving in both directions
ah now one of my favorite ways to reduce tension in the neck and shoulders is
with a little bit of self massage of course having someone else massage you
it’s such a great luxury but not one that we can always afford or have time
for and then that headache creeps up you just got to take what you can get and
sometimes just got to do the work yourself so you can reach your hands up
to the tops of your shoulders and just begin gently kneading across the tops of
the shoulders here so I’m using the flat parts of my fingers and I’m giving a
medium to firm pressure I’m just pulling my shoulders forward so just really
working the tops of the traps there you may notice some knots in there some
particular places that are very tight you can spend a little extra time in
those places if that’s what feels good then you can begin to take this up into
your neck so I’m working along either side of the spine still using the flat
finger pads to press into the back of the spine and I’m working my way up to
the base of the skull now once you get to the base of your skull here can press
your fingertips forward and begin to lean your head back this will allow you
to massage into the occipital Ridge see if you can really relax those
muscles as you gently rotate your head right and left and this rotation is
coming from your arms from your hands applying pressure in alternating
directions right and left I’m just giving you a nice good massage at the
base of your skull and as you feel ready you can continue your journey massaging
back down the neck so here I’m actually incorporating the thumb and getting a
little bit of a squeezing action squeezing and massaging the muscles
along either side of my spine working along the neck I’m massaging here and
you can work your way all the way down to the tops of the shoulders so again
I’m still incorporating a little bit of that squeezing motion this is a great
way to help your body really release toxins and to let go of any adhesions or
holding patterns in the muscles so this is where we really start to encourage
the muscles to let go and relax and we’ll just make a light fist you can
begin to just tap across the tops of your shoulders and even into the back of
your neck gentle tapping okay don’t go crazy just
use enough pressure that feels good massaging tapping across the tops of
your shoulders in the back of your neck and let’s just take one final self
massage technique this is one that I love just bringing your hands up onto
your head you can begin to massage your scalp if there’s a particular place
where you experience headaches or if there’s any part of your head that hurts
right now you can focus your attention massaging that particular area otherwise
I find it very beneficial to just massage along the whole head it’s very
stimulating to the nervous system it’s very great for bringing in a little bit
more circulation and blood flow around the cranium and sometimes that’s all we
need to help reduce that headache tension because when we bring more blood
into the area we bring more oxygen into the area and when our cells have more
oxygen they just automatically feel better so that self massage can do a lot
for helping to flood an area with oxygen-rich blood after you give yourself a good neck and
shoulder and head massage you can just come to a place of stillness I’m gonna
close your eyes as you sit comfortably sitting up nice and tall lift through
the crown of your head notice how you feel now compared to when we first begin if you are noticing a reduced headache
or reduced neck and shoulder pain smile to yourself this is what you did by
spending this few minutes with yourself you allow your body to heal and restore
itself to balance if you are still dealing with some
headache tension or if this is something that is a chronic issue for you go ahead
and like this video add it to your list of favorites you can come back and
practice the more you practice the more benefit you will receive please leave
your comments below this video was effective for you share the word share
the video let’s help more people relieve their chronic headache pain thank you so
much for joining me today it’s an honor and a pleasure to be your guide I look
forward to seeing you on your mat again soon until then namaste

20 thoughts on “Yoga Stretches for Chronic Headaches | Relaxing Flow with Jen Hilman

  1. It would be so amazing if you did ASMR mediation videos if you have free time cause I know you are a very busy woman! Your voice is so soothing, comforting and relaxing! It could be a combination like your "oil facial massage" video and your "guide fall meditation" video with soft taps! This was a incredible video! ❤ Have a wonderful day!Btw Congratulations on 10k subs Jen!

  2. 08:05 that stretch is a real life saver! I had the worst neck pain and went to see a chiro who fixed it and he showed me that strech and whenever I get that pain from working out or doing a bad movement I can fix it myself with that stretch 👌

  3. Perfect for the morning to even out kinks after a night's sleep and also for the evening after a long day at the desk! Thanks, Jen!

  4. I just finished watching an old Yogatx video and just had to look you up because after doing some hip opening stretching i was left feeling so relaxed and peaceful even after enduring slight pain from the stretching i’m so grateful to have found that you have your own channel

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