Think back to the last time that you traveled on an airplane. My guess is that you tried to pass the time by sleeping, watching a movie, reading a magazine or book, or playing the video games that are available on the head rest of the person in front of you. How did you feel when your plane finally landed? Most of us get are excited to get off the plane because our bodies are tense and aching and we want to feel. Here are 5 exercises that you can do to help you feel refreshed and less fatigued next time you step off the plane.
Do each of the following exercises once an hour for the duration of your flight.
EXERCISES WHILE YOU ARE SEATED
Seated Calf Raises: Sit up right in your seat with your feet about six inches apart and flat on the floor. Take a breath. Exhale and lift your heels off the ground and hold the contraction for 2-3 seconds. Return heels to the floor. Do 10-15 repetitions. You can increase intensity by placing you carry on bag across your lap.
Toe Lifts: Sit up right in your seat with your feet about six inches apart and flat on the floor. Take a breath. Exhale and lift your toes off of the floor and hold for 2-3 seconds. Return your toes to the floor. Do 10-15 repetitions.
Ab suctions: Start by sitting up right in your seat. Take a deep breath in and then exhale removing all of the air from your lungs. Instead of inhaling some more air, pull your stomach as high into your chest cavity as possible. Imagine that you are trying to touch your belly button to your backbone. Hold for about 8-10 seconds and repeat.
EXERCISES WHILE YOU ARE WAITING FOR, OR ARE IN, THE BATHROOM
Body Weight Squats: This is a great exercise to do while waiting in the line for the bathroom. Standing upright, place your feet about shoulder width apart. While inhaling, squat down keeping your torso tight and upright with your weight on your heels. The depth that you want to squat will depend on your flexibility, but to imagine that you are squatting to sit on a first grader’s desk chair. While exhaling, stand back up keeping your weight on your heels and an upright and tight torso. Your knees should stay aligned and not turn inward. Do 10-15 repetitions.
Wall Presses: Standing upright with your feet about shoulder width apart, place your arms straight so that your hands are flat against the wall and fingers pointed towards the ceiling. Your hand should be slightly wider than shoulder width and the tips of your fingers should be at armpit level. Inhaling and keeping your body rigid, touch the wall with your nose. Keep your elbows close to your body. Exhale and press off against the wall and return to your original position. Do 10-15 repetitions.
About the Author
Ryan Lockard, CSCS, CSPS is the founder and head trainer of Specialty Athletic Training and is accredited by the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA) as a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist and a Certified Special Populations Specialist. He is a member of the board of directors for the Autism Society of America and the Central Oregon Disability Support Network.