An image from an aeroplane window of an aeroplane wing against the sunset on land

8 easy inflight exercises that won't make you look weird

27 June 2021

Summer is an exciting time of the year, especially if you’re jetting off to an exotic beach location to embrace a new culture.

However, chasing the sun means travelling long-haul on uncomfortable flights. It may be tempting to binge watch films, catch up on sleep or get a tipsy on G&Ts bit it’s important to keep your body moving when you’re on a plane.

Here are a few easy exercises to help you stay active and healthy onboard, and don’t worry, we won’t have you doing a downward dog in the middle of the aisle.

  1. Go for walks around the cabin (when the seatbelt sign is off)
    Get up, have a walk around, stretch your legs. This will enable the blood to flow to your lower body more freely which is important when inactive for a long time.
  2. Awaken your glutes
    To do this, simply squeeze your bum for 5 seconds at a time and repeat 10 times. You can stay in your seat for this one.
  3. Roll your neck
    Sleeping on a plane can be very awkward and often cause neck ache so if you’ve had a nap and you’ve woken up a little sore, make sure you stretch your sternocleidomastoid muscle (this runs down the side of the neck from beneath the earlobe to the top of the shoulder).
    With your shoulders level and chin forwards, tip your head to the right. Apply light pressure using your right hand to gently press your ear closer to your shoulder. Then repeat on the left.
  4. Stretch your upper body
    You simply need to sit upright in your chair, put your arms over your head and interlink your hands, then take it in turns to stretch over to the right and over to the left.
  5. Ankle circles
    Lift your right leg and circle the ankle clockwise and then anti-clockwise, 5 times each. Repeat on each your left leg.


  6. A full body roll
    We do a full body roll every time we have to stand up in class, know the one I mean? Bend over and touch your toes (with or without your knees bent, this part is up to you) and then roll up slowly, one vertebrate at a time making sure your head is the last thing to come up.
  7. Knee-bend on half-toe
    Legs can become heavy and swollen on long flights and this is when we should take precautions against Deep Vein Thrombosis. This simple exercise requires you to stand up and raise your right knee up to your chest and at the same time, if you're able to balance, rise up onto your tip toes on the left foot. Repeat this 3 - 4 times on each leg.

  8. Calf raises
    Stand with your legs hip distance apart, rise up onto your toes and lower back down again. Repeat 10 times.

    Follow these 8 simple steps and you should find yourself arriving at your destination feeling fresh, limbered up and ready to relax.