When it comes to training the neck, reducing the risk of concussions, or trying to grow neck muscles, the neck harness is the first piece of equipment most people go for.
And for good reason. They are typically low-cost and allow heavy loads to be lifted with the neck. But neck harnesses can be limiting allowing only one movement, the neck extension.
This is where the Iron Neck Alpha Neck Harness shines above its competitors. It has been designed as a versatile neck harness that not only lets you perform neck extensions but isometric neck exercises which are vitally important for reducing the risk of concussion.
You may have heard of the Iron Neck's flagship product, the Iron Neck Pro. The Alpha Neck Harness is a new product that is much more affordable but still providing versatility to your neck training.
So, let’s dive into all the different knick-knacks that the Alpha Neck Harness presents.
The Iron Neck Alpha Neck Harness comes packaged in a plastic zip-lock bag with an instruction sheet and the neck harness itself. Separately in the package is the chain with two carabiners. I like that they did that as the chain can’t damage the Alpha Neck Harness while it’s in transit.
Iron Neck Alpha Neck Harness Review
This is where I believe the Alpha Neck Harness beats other neck harnesses. Not only does the Alpha Neck Harness act as a neck harness where you hang weights through a chain, but it also has D rings on all 4 sides. Front, back, and above each ear.
This allows training to be performed not only through neck extension but also using the resistance bands to heavily load a 4-way isometric hold.
If the Iron Neck device is out of your price range, this is the next best substitute that will allow you to perform some of the same exercises with a greater load than you would be able to use without the Alpha Neck Harness.
Because you can use this neck harness in more than one way, it comes with a chin strap to keep it securely fastened on your head when performing isometric exercises.
Quality & Durability
All the stitching is reinforced so there is no way you will be able to pull the D rings out regardless of how strong your neck is. I’ve tried my heaviest resistance band (50 lb) with the Alpha Neck Harness and it holds sturdy.
There are no frayed ends and the Velcro straps for adjusting the Alpha Neck Harness are stitched on not glued so they don’t peel.
I’ve seen in other products where Velcro is glued and not stitched and it doesn’t take long for them to start coming apart so I was happy to see that in this product.
The webbing material is strong and durable and is 1 inch wide which is much wider than other neck harnesses. This increases the longevity of the neck harness.
Because of the Alpha Neck Harnesses extra features, it becomes the most versatile neck harness on the market. Firstly, it acts as a normal neck harness. The chain attaches to the ‘doggy ears’ which are D rings that hang down each side.
Here, you can perform the typical neck harness exercise the neck extension. The 4 other D rings on each side and front and back of the Alpha Neck Harness allow you to load heavy isometrics.
Improving isometric neck strength has been shown to reduce the risk of concussion and in my experience, isometric neck training instantly reduces neck pain which isn’t relieved by other methods such as stretching or traction.
Comfort & Fit
As neck harnesses go, the Alpha Neck Harness is very comfortable. They have stitched foam padding under the 1-inch webbing so no webbing rubs against your head and face. This foam padding extends under the chin strap creating a soft feeling against the chin.
The chin strap has an extra foam pad that is moveable which I've found is great for covering the extra bit of webbing leftover when strapping in. If you've got a big head and chin, this will come in handy.
When performing isometrics and neck extensions, because the Alpha Neck Harness covers the whole head, it doesn't rub or press on the ears or any particular part of the head.
The comfort is next level due to the foam padding and the overall design. The way it fits around the head like a snug hat makes neck training pleasant. Because the material is soft, it forms to any head shape.
If you’ve ever used a neck training device that hurts and is uncomfortable, you’ll know how important it is to have a piece of equipment that allows you to train maximally.
You can adjust the sizing of the Alpha Neck Harness in two ways. One is the straps on the back of the harness. This allows you to tighten or loosen the circumference to what is comfortable to you.
It is a simple Velcro strap that is fed through a metal link. The Alpha Neck Harness is designed for all-sized heads. I have my Velcro straps tightened through the D rings on the side.
The great thing about this neck harness is that it doesn't need to be strapped in tightly. It can be loosely, but securely put on your head and allow you to perform various isometric exercises.
Secondly, there is the chin strap which can be adjusted. Again, this is with the stitched Velcro strap which can be made very large or very small depending on your head size.
Finally, while the chain isn’t adjustable, it is much longer than other neck harnesses I’ve used which doesn’t affect its usability at all. In fact, the longer chain makes it easier to put the neck harness on when loading heavier plates as you don’t need to bend down as far.
Below is a picture of the long Alpha Neck Harness chain at the top and the Spud Inc chain below it.
The price point of the Alpha Neck Harness is one of its major selling points. It is half the price of the Iron Mind head strap and the Neck Flex, and similarly priced to the Spud Inc neck harness.
And that is with the added features of being able to perform a wider variety of exercises with this one piece of equipment.
I would advise adding a resistance band to your Alpha Neck Harness so you can take full advantage of this device.
The 35 lb green resistance band is the perfect resistance in my experience. For females, I would level down to the 25 lb blue resistance band. I would not go any lower in resistance than this as they become very light.
If you don’t have much space to work with, the 50 lb grey resistance band is your best option as you don’t need to move far to get a lot of resistance.
Make sure you also get a door or loop attachment so you can clip the resistance band to something sturdy.
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Iron Neck Alpha Neck Harness
There is no other neck harness like the Iron Neck Alpha Neck Harness. If you're on a budget and looking to level up your neck strength and size, this is the piece of equipment you need.
Reinforced stitching, 1-inch wide webbing, and a design made to cover the head and reduce strain on any particular part of the harness or head.
Comfort & Fit
The most comfortable neck harness I've ever worn. Easily adjustable to fit any head size or shape.
Half the price of the Iron Mind harness and a similar price to the Spud Inc harness with more features and versatility makes this the best value for money.