As you age, finding 9 people to play baseball (really 18) or 6-10 to play basketball is more and more challenging.
Hence why people take up sports like golf and tennis. You can play with one other person or even alone (particularly in golf!)
And for these ROTATIONAL sports, stability and strength are required but mobility is king, particularly disassociation between your hips and shoulders (otherwise known as the X-Factor).
The mobility piece that tends to diminish your X-Factor as you age is thoracic spine (T-spine) mobility. So here are three great warm up drills for a workout or before a golf round in the locker room that can be done to improve T-spine mobility and restore your X-Factor:
- Bench T-spine mobilization with a stick: T-Spine extension is necessary to create optimal rotation so doing this before the next two is CRITICAL to the success of this mobility series. Sit the hips back as you push the elbows into the bench pad
- Sidelying Open the Book: Now that we have some extension, Open the book is great to add rotation specific to the T-spine. You have to get the knees above the waist so that the lumbar spine is locked in place and you can focus solely on the mid-back for rotation. Once there, exhale to open and extend away from the down arm/hand attempting to get the entire arm on the floor. For most, it will take some reps but you should be able to get there with some BIG exhales!
- **Advanced** Sidelying Around the World: Same set up as Open the Book but now the goal is to achieve arm and hand contact through almost a full 360 degrees. Reaching long is critical to make this one work. If you are nailing this, you have all the t-spine rotation necessary to crush the ball!
Use this combo to increase the X-Factor, gaining power on your swing or stroke and superior ball speed!