Let’s face it, being stuck in an airport isn’t fun. Even if your flight isn’t delayed, there’s only so much wandering around duty-free that a person can tolerate before you start to get bored and your body feels sore and tense. If this is the case for you, this 13-minute yoga routine could solve all your problems.
This travel airport yoga flow from Yoga with Adriene is designed to target the neck, shoulders, hips, lower back and leg muscles, to release tight areas that tend to ache when you travel. It’s also meant to refresh your mood and energise the body, and it’s an easy routine to try with or without the best yoga mat.
The best thing about this quick yoga flow is that it only takes 13 minutes and you can do it sitting or standing from anywhere, including waiting at your gate in the airport. After I gave it a try, I found it to be an enjoyable and relaxing flow to try before you board a flight or when you get off at your destination.
Try this 13-minute yoga routine for long travels
Step 1: In a standing position, relax and focus your gaze on the ground in front of you. After a few breaths, drop your left ear to your left shoulder to stretch your neck. You can bring your left hand over to your head to deepen the stretch. Do the same on the right side by dropping your chin to your chest and rolling your head to the right. These simple movements are great for releasing tension and stretching the muscles, and are easy to do while waiting in an airport queue.
Step 2: Bring the feet together and lift the arms above your head before leaning over to one side. Repeat this on your other side and go back and forth between the left and right a few times to feel the stretch down your body. Return to a standing position and bring your arms behind you to open the chest and lengthen the body. On an exhale, fold forward and keep your arms behind you. Hold this before rising back up.
Step 3: Touch your shoulders with your fingertips and slowly twist to the right and left. This shakes out and loosens your body while energising the muscles. With your hands still on your shoulders, rotate them backwards and forwards. Cross the right arm over your left shoulder and use your left hand to deepen the stretch. Hold this and rotate your head from left to right a few times. Change arms.
Step 4: Bring your left hand to your waist or hold on to the wall, chair or the person next to you (ideally the person you’re travelling with!). Bring your right knee up and catch the shin or ankle with your right hand to bring your leg behind you and stretch your quads. Hold this before bringing your right leg forward up to the chest to stretch the glutes. Do the same on the other side.
Step 5: Cross the right foot over your left foot. Inhale and bring the arms up before exhaling and folding your body down, bringing your hands to the floor. Put your hands on your hips to bring your body back up. Switch sides.
Step 6: Put your right leg in front in a lunge-like position. Keep both legs straight and bring your arms up and twist them together in an eagle arm pose. Exhale and bend your right knee while folding over into a pyramid fold. Lengthen the right leg if you can. Come back up before swapping sides. Finish the flow by shaking out your arms.
For more yoga routines, check out these 15 yoga moves to do in the car to banish pain during commutes.