I was sitting in the car the other week with a friend who asked me if it was safe to crack his own neck. He demonstrated his maneuver: he grabbed his chin with one hand and the back of his head with the other and gave an extreme, rotational “jerk” to his neck. The popping was audible. I was horrified.
Your vertebral artery, which is a major blood supplier of the brain, runs along the side of the neck’s vertebrae in a small canal. Abruptly rotating the neck, especially if the neck is extended, can place stress on the vertebral artery. Doing this repeatedly over time has the potential to jar the vertebral artery loose and cause a rupture. You don’t need that to happen, regardless of how much relief you feel afterwards.
No, it is not okay to crack your neck.