Iron Neck Review: Rigorously Tested!

August 27, 2021

The Iron Neck is my favorite neck training device on the market. It is the only device that actually makes my neck feel great after using it. Have you ever woken up and can barely look left or right? Turns out just sleeping can cause neck pain that lasts for days!

A few isometrics and looking left and right with the Iron Neck, my neck feels brank spanking new. And I've tried all sorts of neck traction devices. None of them work like this does.

So, I'm going to run you through everything you need to know about the Iron Neck through my years of using the neck device.

Get 10% OFF any Iron Neck order with the code "LBEB10"

Iron Neck Pro Review

Let me give you a quick rundown on the Iron Neck models. The Iron Neck Starter is the most basic version. The only difference is that it does not have ANY friction dial so rotational neck movements will only be resisted by the resistance band.

The Iron Neck Varsity has a friction dial. But it is set to 20% of the friction of the Iron Neck Pro. So it is not adjustable. The Iron Neck Pro has all of the bells and whistles.

So this will be a full review of the Iron Neck Pro. The model I own and would recommend for it's versatility. This way, you know exactly what to expect when receiving your Iron Neck. 

Unboxing The Iron Neck

There’s no need to worry about receiving a damaged Iron Neck in the post. The Iron Neck is held between stiff foam padding that is fitted to keep it from moving around in the box and protecting it from anything that may press against it.

Underneath your Iron Neck, you will have your attachments, foam pads, elastic bands, and cardboard training manuals that walk you through the various exercises and setup tutorials.

A lot of gear can fit in one box so even if you go all out and purchase an Iron Neck, shirts, and Fitness band bundles, you will receive them all in one package.

Features

These are what make the Iron Neck unique to any other piece of neck training equipment. The overall design is a halo shape where the friction dial can move around a full 360°.

This friction dial is like a brake where the tighter it is, the more rotational resistance you will have placing an extra challenge on your neck muscles when performing exercises such as Left & Rights.

I prefer keeping my friction dial on the lighter side and allowing most of the resistance to come through the elastic band.

Another unique feature is the air pump which is used to make sure the Iron Neck fits tight against your head.

Once you’ve worn your Iron Neck a few times, you’ll know exactly how many pumps it takes to get to your correct setting. It’s important to note that you shouldn’t exceed 15 pumps as it may burst the air sack inside the device.

One of the problems with the older Iron Neck Pro was the sizing being one size fits all. So those with smaller heads couldn’t quite get it tight enough even after 15 pumps.

I’ve had athletes use the older model and while some can fit it perfectly, others find it painful or just plain uncomfortable.

The new models take care of this problem with their new fitted foam padding.

Quality

Iron Necks can take a beating. The usual bumps and wear and tear from a gym are no match for the hard durable plastic these are made of.

They were originally made of metal but they were far too heavy so the move to plastic was born. But no need to worry.

It’s not flimsy plastic material that will break over time. These are solid and can bump into heavy objects and be dent free (trust me, I’ve bumped mine a fair share).

The inside padding doesn’t wear down and the Velcro straps don’t fray.

I’ve had my Iron Neck since 2018 and even with frequent use, none of the straps or padding are showing any wear and tear.

You can be assured the quality of the Iron Neck is top notch.

Comfort

The Iron Neck Skull Cap (or beanie) that comes in the bundle can dramatically improve the comfort of the device on your head. For me, I find I can use the Iron Neck without the skull cap and it sits very comfortably.

Those with long hair will want to use a skull cap as putting the Iron Neck on can pull your hair. If you are sharing between multiple people, then a skull cap for each person may be necessary so you don’t sweat over each other.

The adjustable top strap means you can fit it to any forehead height. It is color-coded so you can note down which bar and color your individual setting is so it’s the same every time.

There is also a helmet-like chin strap to keep your Iron Neck secure on your head when you perform movements facing away from the resistance band.

Without the chin strap, it can feel like the resistance band will pull the Iron Neck off your head like when the wind blows your hat off on a boat.

However, the chin strap prevents this with ease and if you fit the Iron Neck right, you won’t even need to use it.

Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Train the neck through a full 360° range of motion
  • Alleviate any neck pain from training or sleeping
  • Strengthen the neck isometrically, rotationally, and in various eccentric and concentric movements
  • Made of high-quality materials that will last you a very long time. You won’t need to replace your Iron Neck due to wear and tear

Cons

  • Can feel uncomfortable when first using it but you get used to it and the uncomfortableness subsides
  • Much more expensive than other neck training apparatus

Get 10% OFF any Iron Neck order with the code "LBEB10"

How Does The Iron Neck Work?

The Iron Neck works by providing linear resistance through an elastic band that attaches directly to the device and by providing rotational resistance through a friction dial.

You can train every muscle in your neck with this one piece of equipment.

How The Iron Neck Has Changed

As with all products, they undergo upgrades and changes as the manufacturers find better ways to build their product. The Iron Neck is no different.

The new model has been created so it can fit ANY head shape whereas you weren't able to adjust the inner circumference of the older model. You can see this in the images below. The Iron Neck on the left is the old model. The right is the new model with the foam pad.

As you may see, the front of the Iron Neck now has changeable foam pads which means even if you have a small head, you can use the Iron Neck.

How To Use The Iron Neck At Home

If you go for the Iron Neck Bundle, you will receive all three attachments for your Iron Neck. Each one serves a specific purpose which you can see in action in the above video I made.

Firstly, you can probably guess what the door belt is designed for. You guessed it, to use your door as an anchor point for your Iron Neck.

The only downside is that the height your door belt will sit is going to be dictated by the hinges on your door. If you are a shorter individual, then your top hinge may be too high.

I prefer using the door belt outdoors on larger tree trunks as you can adjust the height wherever you want which lets you also use the Fitness Bundles which are great resistance bands.

Obviously, if you don’t have an outdoor area or you live in a cold climate, then your door is the best indoor option. The door belt has a very large circumference so if you have other large sturdy objects they can also be used as anchors.

The door anchor is the other option to use your door as an anchor. This anchor allows you to choose the height making it more versatile when your door hinges are too high.

The clinch anchor is the final attachment which is a simple loop that you can use around your power rack. If you have other solid beams such as stair railings they can also work.

Is The Iron Neck Safe?

The Iron Neck is perfectly safe for all populations. Because it can be scaled back to such light loads, even those with necks more susceptible to injury can benefit.

Simply using lighter bands and no friction on the dial, you’ve created an easy base to start from where you can gradually increase the resistance as you feel more comfortable.

Why Is The Iron Neck So Expensive?

This is one of the most voiced complaints regarding the Iron Neck. Especially since other neck training devices such as neck harnesses run for under $100.

But you’re not paying for a strap to put around your head while nodding up and down.

You’re paying for a one-of-a-kind device that allows you to train your neck in ranges of motion you’d never be able to do with any other device.

Not even an elastic strength band will let you do what the Iron Neck does.

Further, the Iron Neck replaces every neck training machine and device you can find on the market. An expensive 4-way neck machine is mostly a waste of space and money while a neck harness only allows you to train one movement.

The Iron Neck does it all and more.

Is The Iron Neck Worth It?

Without a doubt, the Iron Neck is worth the money. If you are involved in any sort of combat, collision, or contact sport, it is a must-have piece of training equipment.

Even if you are not involved in any of these sports, having a strong neck can potentially save your life if you are in a bad car accident or anything that causes heavy whiplash.

Finally, for those that suffer any kind of neck pain or spend a lot of time at their desk, the Iron Neck can alleviate stiffness and pain and potentially reduce the negatives associated with poor seated posture.

My Favorite Uses For The Iron Neck

My personal favorite Iron Neck exercise is the Left & Right.

I like to perform these facing away from the resistance band to train the front of the neck which is often neglected.

By the end of three sets, I can turn my chin easily to my shoulder and the relief of stiffness I feel in my neck is awesome.

My second favorite exercise is the 360° spin.

If I am struggling with any kind of neck pain, this is my go-to as the isometric contraction has a “numbing” effect on pain and it seems to literally fix any nagging pain.

Get 10% OFF any Iron Neck order with the code "LBEB10"

About the Author

I am a professional strength & conditioning coach that works with professional and international teams and athletes. I am a published scientific researcher and have completed my Masters in Sport & Exercise Science. I've combined my knowledge of research and experience to bring you the most practical bites to be applied to your training.

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