In sports that involve close contact, your neck is one of the most vulnerable body parts. In MMA, the neck is often a very important fighting technique, as the body follows the neck. Unfortunately, all of this stress from the pushing and pulling on the neck can have negative effects on the tendons and muscles in the neck. Some neck injuries can result in spinal and head problems, which is why fighters need to ensure that their necks are strong and healthy before getting into the ring. Here are three simple neck exercises that can be performed by professional fighters and athletes that will help prevent injuries by strengthening the neck:

1. Resisted Neck Extension

This exercise requires you to sit on the floor. Your hands need to be placed behind your head. Make sure that you are relaxed so that your neck muscles aren't tensed up. Once relaxed and in position, use your hands to provide resistance and push your head back. Hold this for about five seconds and then return to the starting position. Repeat for a set of 10 reps.

2. Resisted Neck Lateral Flexion

Again, your starting position should be on the floor. Place your right hand on the same side of your head with your neck fully relaxed. Use this hand to provide resistance as you push into your hand. Hold this for about five seconds. Return to the original position. Repeat for a set of 10 reps, then switch to the opposite side for 10 more reps.

3. Resisted Neck Flexion

Once again, you need to start on the floor. Place both of your hands on your forehead. Make sure that your neck is completely relaxed. Use your hands to provide resistance as you flex and push your neck forward. Hold this for roughly five seconds before returning to the original position. Repeat for a total of 10 reps.

These three exercises will help keep your neck strong, which will help prevent injuries, while also protecting the head from serious injuries. After all, a strong neck is an important part of preventing concussions since it helps to reduce the total amount of energy that is transferred to your head when contact occurs. If you have been suffering from any form of neck pain, it is important to stay active. However, at the same time, you may want to speak to your chiropractor for pain management and a possible adjustment.