Health and Wellbeing

Kids & Tech Neck: Physiotherapy Exercises For Neck Pain

As a work-at-home mom, your daily tech usage is substantial. Children tend to imitate our actions, including technology use, which can lead to the development of Tech Neck.
Let’s address this issue and find effective solutions.

Neck pain, shoulder pain, back pain, headaches can all come from a common phenomenon called “Tech Neck”. If your kids have been complaining of these symptoms, then they might be suffering from this condition.

Fortunately, Tech Neck can be resolved with some simple steps that will not only reduce pain and headaches but also improve the overall health of your body.

Essendon Physio, Nicole Tén, from Northwest Physiotherapy Group discusses Tech Neck- The Negative Impact Of Electronic Devices On Your Kids Posture And How To Combat It.


Understanding Tech Neck

Tech Neck develops because of prolonged poor posture while using electronic devices such as phones, tablets, and laptops.

It is estimated that on average people use their phones for approximately four hours per day.

Despite how common this condition is, only 35% of young adults have even heard of it.

When we use our phones or tablets, we tend to slouch our neck and shoulders to look at the screen. The more bent over you are, the heavier your head is. This creates more strain and tension on your muscles and joints. If you let this build up over time, it can lead to pain and headaches.

This shows the increasing force strain on the neck with increasing flexion angles.


The Importance Of Good Posture

Good posture is crucial for maintaining good health. It helps prevent muscle and joint pain, improves breathing, and enhances physical performance.

By teaching our kids to sit more upright, we can reduce the strain on our muscles and joints and avoid developing poor neck posture.


Simple Steps To Combat Tech Neck

So, how can you help your kids with neck posture correction?

The first step is awareness. Most children are not aware that they’re doing this because they’re focused on their devices. Gently point out this posture when you notice it happening.

Once they become aware of it, they can correct by simply sitting more upright – bringing the chest up and lifting the phone so the gaze is more level as opposed to looking down.

There are also simple physiotherapy exercises for neck pain you can do too. It is still possible to look at the phone just with a gentle nod of the head, rather than a slouching through the back and the upper neck.

In addition to improving posture, it’s important to avoid remaining in the same position for a long period of time.

Taking a break every 30 minutes, even if it’s just to roll the shoulders and turn the neck side to side, can prevent tension from building up.

These simple actions will not only help combat Tech Neck but also improve overall posture and prevent pain related to bad posture.


Physiotherapy Exercises For Neck Pain

In this video, Nicole explains further what Tech Neck is and shows us some Physiotherapy Exercises For Neck Pain


Here’s 10 Ways Parents Can Help Their Kids To Prevent Neck Pain

  1. Encourage breaks: Regular breaks from electronic devices are essential to give their neck muscles a rest.
  2. Limit screen time: Set limits on the amount of time your child spends using electronic devices to reduce the strain on their neck.
  3. Promote proper posture: Teaching children what good posture is and how to maintain it while using electronic devices is key. Emphasize the importance of sitting up straight and avoiding slouching.
  4. Ergonomic setup: Ensure that your child’s workstation or device setup is ergonomically designed, with the screen at eye level and a comfortable chair and desk. Perhaps, try a standing desk.
  5. Neck stretches: There are simple neck stretches and exercises to relieve tension and improve flexibility in their neck muscles that you can teach your child.
  6. Supportive pillows: Provide a supportive pillow for your child that promotes proper neck alignment during sleep and reduces strain.
  7. Physical activity: Encourage regular physical activity and exercises that strengthen the neck and upper back muscles, helping to counteract the effects of prolonged device usage.
  8. Take breaks for movement: Get kids active regularly with short breaks during device usage to engage in gentle neck and shoulder movements or stretches.
  9. Promote ‘old school’ fun: Go old school and encourage your child to engage in activities that don’t involve electronic devices, such as outdoor play, hobbies, or reading books.
  10. Lead by example: Set a good example by limiting your own device usage and practicing proper posture, showing your child the importance of a balanced approach to technology.



Are you ready to combat Tech Neck and improve your kids’ postural health?

By following these simple steps, you can help yourself and your children combat Tech Neck and improve your overall health. Remember, good posture is essential for maintaining good health, and simple actions such as taking regular breaks and sitting more upright can make a big difference.

If you are experiencing any trouble, don’t hesitate to seek professional help from your local professional physiotherapist. Let’s move better and feel better!

Nicole Tén

Nicole T'en is an experienced Physiotherapist at Northwest Physiotherapy Group. Nicole is an authority on musculoskeletal physiotherapy and treats both children and adults suffering many types of conditions. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, playing video games, and practicing kendo.