Dumbell lifting- what am I doing wrong?

So a couple of weeks ago I started lifting the 5 and 10-pound weights I have. And, boy, does a little definition come quickly! I’m very happy with the results so far. Every other day I lift them- curls, out to the front, out to the sides, and straight up with the 5 pounds and with the 10 pounds I lift those behind my head to work my upper back and triceps.

A few days ago I began to get soreness in the back of my neck, and can only attribute it to the weights. It seems a silly question to call my doctor for- of course I’m taking Ibuprophen and trying to watch my form. Is it normal to have this in the beginning, and what exactly would a proper form be, anyway? I assume looking straight ahead and trying not to tense the neck.


Are you doing them like this?

Actually I’ve been doing them standing. I’ll switch to sitting.

My only advice from a very limited level of experience is to do your best to isolate the muscles you’re using to lift. When I was a gym rat a few years back my trainer would point out people who, when doing arm exercises of various types, would jerk their whole upper bodies into the motion, which put stress on the upper body and cheated the actual lift.

I try very hard not to do that, and to keep my breathing slow and steady. Maybe I’m concentrating too hard on everything, and unknowingly tightening my neck in my efforts.

I think you’re failing to realize that the muscles in your neck are part of the muscle group you’re targeting. They help lift the shoulders. If you’re doing lifts out to the sides (you know, the shoulder ones), that’s going to use your neck muscles too. It’s not bad form, it’s just regular soreness.

Of course, IANAD, and I don’t have your muscles, so I could be wrong.

I thought of that, of course everything else is moderately sore so it makes sense. I didn’t think my neck was that out of shape- after all it does hold up my head all day long- but maybe that’s it.

Another thing I just thought of is that I also stopped drinking 3 or 4 two-liters of Coke a week and have cut back to just one 12-ounce can a day. Naturally I’m getting the withdrawal headaches, and sometimes my headaches can go down into my neck. Maybe that’s it?

And also I’ve lost 4 pounds! Only 20 more and I’ll be thin, with muscles! Fear me!