3 YOGA EXERCISES FOR LONG FLIGHTS

Updated: Jun 30, 2019


By Regina Kaza


I find myself on my ass a lot, literally. I am constantly siting at my desk, sitting in my car, on the couch, on a plane, in a restaurant, eating cheese fries. That's not the point. The point is that sitting for extended periods of time does not do wonders for our body. In fact, Apple's Chief Executive Officer, Tim Cook, recently claimed that 'sitting is the new cancer' and getting all Apple employees standing desks. Let that sink in.


And if you're an adventurous gal ready to take on the world one transatlantic flight at a time, you're in trouble. You know the feeling. You've been sitting in a cooped up airplane seat for over 8 hours. Your sit bones are tight, your hamstrings have turned to stone, your body is screaming and you're asking yourself "when do we get to the part with the glamorous Intsagram photos because this is NOT what I signed up for." I feel you. There was a point where I was on an airplane every other weekend for work and fun. I grew to despise getting into that tiny seat and felt awful every time I landed.


Luckily for me (and for you) I have cracked the code to more comfortable flying — YOGA. These three yoga sessions are the secret to feeling like a million bucks before the flight and when you land.


*Desk job warriors, this routine is great for you too! Bring your yoga mat to the office, reserve a conference room, grab a colleague and get to it.


BEFORE THE FLIGHT

The best thing you can do for your body before getting on a long flight is to get a sweat in. Loosen up your muscles, stretch your limbs so that you actually feel relaxed and ready to sit for hours. This 30-min Vinyasa flow is one of my favorites for a pre-flight yoga session as it focused on stretching and isn't too strenuous for the mornings if you have an early departure.


DURING THE FLIGHT

If you're flying cross-country or cross-continent, you have plenty of time to try all 12 of these in-flight yoga poses. Try to stand up every hour and walk around, roll your ankles and neck to get some movement going. Also, remember that flying de-hydrates us so try to avoid coffee and alcohol in-flight if you want to feel great coming off the plane. Bring a refillable water bottle with you and pick up a coconut water pre-flight after you pass through security. Avoid the salty complimentary snacks and pack some watermelon, berries, cucumbers or celery (all hydrating foods) to munch on.


AFTER THE FLIGHT

Yoga With Adrienne is one of my favorite yoga channels in general and this Total Body Stretch is a gentle and invigorating session for your hips, back and overall body after a long flight. Once you've dropped off your things in the hotel, do this session while you're freshening up for exploring your new city. A travel yoga mat like this is great to bring with you and doesn't take up much room. Stretch bands are also great for on-the-go stretching and can be used for hotel-room pilates during your trip!