Before practicing isolations you should raise a light sweat (warm-up) and loosen the area. Here are some ideas for loosening:

Shoulder loosening:

Lift & drop (dropping should release tension; also lift push back and squeeze shoulder blades together)

Swing your arms rhythmically in front of your body, to the sides and up

Neck loosening:

Use lateral movements only. Do not warm-up with head rolls.

Here are extensions to help loosen the two top vertebrae (these are the ones you'll need for doing nice head slides).

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