To put it bluntly, former New York Mets reliever Turk Wendell was a full-blown maniac when it came to superstition. A shortlist of the right hander's many eccentricities includes always leaping over the baselines when walking to the mound, chewing black licorice while pitching and brushing his teeth between innings. The Massachusetts native would also wear a necklace decorated with the sharp teeth of wild animals he had hunted and killed. Wendell's quirks extended off the field, too. In 2000, the reliever asked that the New York Mets make his contract for $9,999,, in honor of his uniform number of 99.
If you're looking for a smart alternative to Dumbbell Side Bends that require even less equipment, Side Planks are your answer. In addition to the obliques, Side Planks target the quadratus lumborum (QL). The QL is a deep core muscle that connects the pelvis, spine and rib cage. It works to stabilize the spine and prevent side bend during actions like unilateral pressing. "If the QL isn't functioning as it should, even basic actions such as walking and breathing will be limited," says Tim DiFrancesco, owner of TD Athletes Edge and former strength and conditioning coach for the Los Angeles Lakers. "The QL functions to provide stability to the pelvis and lumbar spine intermittently as you perform any and all activities." NFL stars Cliff Avril and Antonio Brown include Side Planks in their training.
The White House tradition dates back to at least President Andrew Johnson, when he hosted the Brooklyn Atlantics and Washington Nationals amateur baseball clubs in August 1865, as ESPN notes . President Ronald Reagan largely is considered the first commander in chief to regularly honor teams. Now, about a dozen professional, . national and college sports organizations visit 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue each year. The events allow players to meet the sitting president (either Democrat or Republican), tour the building and be recognized as world champions, not to mention the photo opp, presentation of a personalized jersey, helmet or other memorabilia to the United States leader...and the list of jokes.