top of page
  • Dr. Mark Freund

Atlas Correction Exercises for Neck Pain

atlas correction exercises

Do you continuously struggle with recurring neck pain? and migraines> If so, you might be having stiff and strained muscles that limit your movement, making the neck area very painful. Regardless of whether you're hunched over your computer all day or work a physically demanding job, there are various ways to soothe and treat an aching neck.

In this article, we'll cover some of the atlas adjustment exercises that may be beneficial to helping you relieve neck pain.

Signs your Atlas is Misaligned

A misalignment in your atlas can lead to all sorts of problems in your body, not just your neck. Here are various symptoms you may be experiencing when your atlas is misaligned:

  • Pain in the neck, muscle ache, stiffness

  • Headache can radiate to one side of the head.

  • Dizziness, vertigo, hearing loss

  • Migraine with visual disturbance, vomiting, nausea

  • Facial Pain.

  • Pain in the shoulders

  • Postural Distortion

  • Irritation in the nerve root

  • Pain in the jaw (Close to ear).

  • Rib or chest ache, pain, discomfort

  • Shoulder pain, arm pain, leg pain which is radiating which could have been developed through the irritation and the nerve root tension

  • Your head cannot turn fully.

  • Pain in the hips, knees, and or even the ankles

  • Disruption in the vagus nerve can cause disorders in the lung, heart, digestive system, stomach, and bowl.

  • Congestion in the brain is due to a blockage in the flow of blood.

  • Pain in the lower back and damage in the spinal disc because of the postural distortion

  • High blood pressure.

  • Difficulty in sleeping and grinding of the teeth at night

Atlas Adjustment Stretches that Help Realign the Atlas

Exercises are an excellent way to relax tight muscles and increase the mobility of your neck. The best way to loosen up the neck muscles is to perform certain stretches. This allows you to resource and maintain flexibility and promote a greater range of motion, which alleviates pain. Before you begin with our atlas adjustment stretches, make sure that you perform that slowly to avoid further pressure or tensions. Remember to breathe as you intensify the stretches. Additionally, consult with your doctor, chiropractor, or physical therapist to see which treatment option is right for you.

Stretching is an important aspect of treatment for relieving the pain from atlas misalignment. If you continuously perform repetitively or just don't move enough, the body's fasciae and muscles become inflexible and tense. As the tension in the tissue increase, more pressure will be placed onto the joints. As a result, more chronic and painful conditions will occur if left untreated.

Atlas Adjustment Stretches for pain relief

Here are some atlas correction exercises you can do to help with cervical pain:

Stretch 1:

  1. Stay in your chair with your back straight for this exercise.

  2. Pull your chin towards your sternum; this allows the cervical vertebrae to straighten.

  3. Turn your head halfway or 45 degrees to the right.

  4. Next, bend your right arm towards your chest and clench your fist. Then, pull your right shoulder down, increasing the distance between your neck and shoulder.

  5. Place your left hand at a slight angle over the back of your head (perhaps allowing your baby finger to line up with the tip of your ear) and pull your head diagonally forward and down to the left.

  6. You should feel an intense stretch down the right side of your neck. Hold this position for 30 seconds.

  7. Then for 10 seconds, try to straighten your head but continue to hold it in the same position with your hand. This counter tension intensifies the stretch.

  8. Gently release and return your head to the stretch before (head down to the left) and hold for 20 seconds.

  9. Repeat the last step 2 more times.

  10. Remove your hand from your head, but keep your arms bent and your fist clenched.

  11. Drop your head slightly down and to the left and hold for 10 seconds.

  12. Then repeat all steps of this exercise on the other side.

Stretch 2:

  1. Sit down and take a diamond position.

  2. Pull down your shoulder and left arm.

  3. Shift your head at a halfway 45-degree angle to the left.

  4. Put your hand on just above the ear.

  5. Pull your head down and forward into a nice stretch. And hold the position for several minutes.

Stretch 3:

  1. Keep your upper body and head straight and tuck your chin down by pulling it with your palm.

  2. Bend your head slightly forward as far as you can.

  3. Use your arms to support the head within this position.

  4. Position your palm on the back of your head to help intensity the stretch and hold for a few minutes.

Stretch 4:

  1. Sit upright and into the diamond pose.

  2. Look up and pull your chin all the way back.

  3. Stretch your head as far as possible.

  4. If it feels unstable, use your hand to support your head. Hold it for several minutes.

atlas adjustment stretches for neck pain relief

Stretch 5:

  1. Sit upright into a diamond post. This time, take a mini foam roller and place it behind one ear. Use your hand to find the atlas bone to ensure you're rolling in the right spot.

  2. Roll down the neck with constant pressure.

  3. Perform the exercise several times.

Foam Rolling for Misaligned Atlas

If you experience symptoms of a misaligned atlas vertebra, then you may benefit from manual therapy techniques and fasciae foam rollers. The balls and rollers have a soft surface but are designed to allow additional pressure without damaging your body. These safe manual therapy exercises focus on decreasing tension in the fasciae, making them more flexible while simultaneously preventing shortening of the fasciae fibers. The manual therapy action also stimulates cell metabolism in these tissues and promotes improved blood circulation.

How to foam roll properly:

  1. Slowly roll the ball and use constant pressure.

  2. Avoid using excessive pressure.

  3. Start with your least tight spots, then move towards the tense body muscles.

  4. Roll in one direction first to help shift the intercellular fluid.

  5. Roller methods: Always roll towards the heart. So, for example, from fingertips upwards along the arms, or from the feet and legs over the crotch along the torso upwards, or from the top of the head downwards.

  6. Ball methods: Small spiral movements, increasing the pressure in particularly sensitive areas.

Foam rolling exercise:

  1. Find the area at the base of your skull, directly above the top of the neck. You may feel a slight dip before the atlas bone.

  2. Tilt your head slightly forward.

  3. Take the lacrosse ball with both hands and place it on the point mentioned above.

  4. Slowly roll the ball in spiral movements and roll a little to the right for 60 seconds.

  5. Vary the angle and look for sensitive spots. Paying attention to those areas apply a little more pressure on them.

  6. Roll back to the middle of the head and roll to the left for 60 seconds. Return to the center and vary the angle, and roll around the atlas.

  7. Grab the foam roller next. Place the roller on the base of your skull with your hands on the ends.

  8. The circumferential groove of the foam roller should be positioned over the middle of your neck to safeguard the upper cervical spine.

  9. Begin slowly rolling down towards the upper cervical spine.

  10. Turn your head halfway or 45 degrees to the right and tilt your head slightly forward.

  11. Place the foam roller at about 45 degrees behind your ear, on the lower end of the skull.

  12. Then, roll towards the neck and repeat a few times per day.

Before doing these atlas correction stretches, make sure to consult with your physical therapist or chiropractor.

If you're struggling to manage the pain from an atlas misalignment, you may be thinking of popping some painkillers. While they might sound okay, those pills are only masking the pain for a short duration as they're not treating the underlying causes. Yet, recently, research shows that the best way to treat pain and inflammation could well lie in the supermarkets and your refrigerator! By selecting the right foods and following an anti-inflammatory diet, you could reduce your risk of illness (as well as inflammation and pain) and reduce symptoms from conditions such as arthritis, IBS, headaches, migraines, achy joints, and muscle pain. There are many great ingredients that are full of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory foods that are rich in important minerals, vitamins, and phytonutrients.

The general rule of thumb that most nutritionists recommend for anti-inflammatory eating are:

  • Eat more plants - Whole plant foods have the anti-inflammatory nutrients that your body needs, so make sure to consume a lot of fruits, veggies, whole grains, and legumes.

  • Focus on antioxidants - They help prevent and repair tissue and cell damage. They're found in colorful veggies and fruits like berries, beets, avocados, leafy greens, ginger, turmeric, beans and lentils, and green tea.

  • Consume more omega 3's - Omega-3 fatty acids play a significant role in regulating your body's inflammatory healing process and help regulate pain by reducing inflammation. Find these healthy fats in fish such as tuna, mackerel, and salmon, along with smaller amounts in walnuts, pecans, ground flaxseed, and soy.

  • Eat less red meat - Try substituting your normal beef with fish, nuts, or soy-based protein a few times a week.

  • Reduce processed foods - Sugary drinks, cereals, pastries, and deep-fried food are all pro-inflammatory. They can contain unhealthy fats that are linked to inflammation. But eating whole fruits, veggies, grains, and beans can be quick if you prep ahead for multiple meals.

However, before you create your own nutrition plan, it's best to consult with a certified nutritionist and healthcare provider to see which foods can help aid in healing your body from pain.

Combine these tips with the pain-relieving exercises for best results! But remember everything in its own time. Practicing daily and optimizing your diet will help improve your overall quality of life, so long as you stick to it.

Atlas Correction and Atlas Adjustment

Treating pain non-surgically is always the best option, particularly with atlas orthogonal treatment or atlas therapy. When deciding whether atlas correction is right for you, it's important to know some of the benefits and reasons for receiving the treatment, such as:

An atlas orthogonal chiropractic adjustment will improve your overall health. Improved health might sound vague, but there are specific ways that routine chiropractic adjustments can improve your overall health, especially if you're experiencing a misaligned atlas. When your spine is properly in alignment, your nervous system functions properly. Your digestive system will operate smoothly; you won't experience brain fog. Furthermore, you'll get a better night's sleep, letting you wake up feeling rejuvenated. When your nervous system flows freely without misalignments, it is a powerful force for healing other internal health issues. In addition, you'll be less prone to develop chronic issues like carpal tunnel syndrome, vertigo, migraines, and repeat ear infections.

atlas adjustment side effects

Not to mention, you'll regain mobility to move your head with a full range of motion. And your nerves will be functioning properly. All of these signals that your brain sends to the central nervous system and vice versa will be operating. Therefore, you may find that many of your symptoms like migraines, dizziness, leg pain, and other consequential symptoms are healed or greatly reduced.

The atlas orthogonal technique is very precise, gentle, and safe. This specialized procedure corrects any misalignment in the upper cervical spring utilizing a special atlas orthogonal percussion instrument.

The reason the correction is incredibly effective is that your chiropractor will use x-rays and other diagnostic scanners to pinpoint the exact location of the atlas bone and measure the specific angle needed for realignment. The adjustments customized each person's needs.

Natural Care Chiropractic is here to help you with your chronic pain and symptoms. If you suspect that you may have an atlas misalignment, it's a good idea to get properly diagnosed. Are you ready to finally treat your atlas misalignment? Performing a quick search online can help you find an upper cervical practitioner in your area. Simply book an appointment with us to let us help you restore your health. You might just be one examination and several gentle adjustments from improving the quality of your life.

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page