This is a vocabulary question.  I'm looking for a verb that would describe "leaning the head backwards to expose the neck."

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When describing movement for both head and neck, "craning" is probably the most common descriptive verb.  It is often used as in "...craning the neck."

Other verbs (or phrases) that would work, however, include "arch," "contort," or "throw the head back."  It honestly depends on the context.  I cannot tell...

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When describing movement for both head and neck, "craning" is probably the most common descriptive verb.  It is often used as in "...craning the neck."

Other verbs (or phrases) that would work, however, include "arch," "contort," or "throw the head back."  It honestly depends on the context.  I cannot tell by your question if you are looking for a specific word or simply trying to come up with something that isn't overused.  The motion you describe is, by nature, pretty specific, so using the most specific verb is going to make it easier for an audience to understand what you are describing.  I'd probably use "crane the neck."

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