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T-Spine Mobility, Pt. 1 (Extension/Side-to-Side Smash and Rolling)

(Episode Transcribed Directly from Video)

Hey guys, coach Mike here at MROC with your 8th episode of MOB of the Week. 
Last week, we talked to you about Spinal Gapping and how to create some space between the vertebrae and such open up your back. So, the next two episodes that we have for you this weekend and next week we’re going to talk about Thoracic Spine mobility, so specifically, the main upper back and how to alleviate some stiffness that you may have in that area. So, let’s take it down to the floor and burst out the foam rolling. 

Alright. So, here we are on the floor with one of our favorite devices, the good old-fashioned foam roller. If you’ve got money use a dense PVC pipe or rumble roller, you’re more than welcome to but this will get the job done for the next three movements that were about to demonstrate that all deal with creating mobility throughout the entire thoracic system. So, what do we do? First off, we're to position the roller on the midback so not below the ribs but at the base of the ribs and then up to the shoulders. So, this is sort of a thoracic spine, the first technique is extension, so what we’re going to do is wrap your arms around and give yourself a big hug and pull the muscle and the tissues of our upper back, open them up and expose them so this tool that we have can actually create some soft tissue. If we stay bunched and bound up, it’s not gonna have full access to the full spectrum of tissue in your upper back. So, hug, pull forward, and start with a teeter-totter back and forth- what you might even correlate to a Pressure waiting technique, okay, but the real kicker here for extension, is hunching back. So, what I’m going to do is I’m going to find that spot and I'm actually going to urge that to arch back keeping the majority of my weight positioned over the roller and if I need more opening power, I can drive through my heels, squeeze my butts and lift my hips and arch back even further. You wanna think about melting into the foam roller or letting the foam roller break you in your extension. So, one more time, first technique – extension – I’m starting at the thoracic spine, hug the body, wrap those tissues forward, create some teeter-totter effect but the big one here, arching back and opening up the spine. 

Now, the second technique we’re gonna use for the thoracic spinal mobility is Side to Side Movement. So, we’ve got ourselves wrapped up and we're doing our pressured waves and we're doing some arching and you know, there’s still something funny going on, so what we wanna do actually now is go from side to side and do more of a see-saw pattern, okay? And I’m just working my hips, that way downward so that I'm working the foam roller upward. So, I started the base with at the t-spine, wrapped up and then just side-to-side movement, if you see am using my core I’m rotating from the hips to dig in to those little side pockets and try to create some more mobility in the thoracic spine. 

Now, the third move we’ve had that I’m going to be showing you in today’s episode, is the Side Roll. So, actually, getting on one specific side or a particular side of spine and side rolling. So, we started with some reach, we've done some pressure waves, we’ve done some arching, we’ve identified something sticky so we’d wrap it up, we’ve got it from side to side rolling and take up one side is significantly tighter or stiffer than the other. That should not be the case, you should have symmetry and balance throughout the body. So, if my right side is all gunked up, well, if you can kind of imagine what I’m going to do, I’m going to roll to the right and then I’ll go back to my pressure weight and really stay focused on this side of the spot, okay, all those muscles adjacent of the vertebrae up and down press your weight, if you get a little bit stuck you can get a smash and floss – meaning you’ll kick out your legs, you can pop the knee, you can just get back into that side-to side roll but sticking to one side moving up and down, really awesome movement right here. Do this for all the time. 

I love it, I hope you love it. Next week, we're going to continue with this thoracic spine mobility and add some cool new tools in your tool box. Alright, that's all I got for you today, continue to train hard, go get dirty. Aroo!

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