We’re into the summer months and restrictions are lifting, so many of us are planning our holidays and will be travelling – for one day trips or longer journeys to visit family or go sightseeing.
Long car, plane or train rides can be uncomfortable, causing stiffness, aches, and pains. The following tips can help you stay comfortable and active during long trips whether driving, flying, or catching a train.
Firstly, it’s important to get yourself as comfortable as possible. In a car, make sure you have your seat in a supportive position.
For planes and trains remember to bring a cushion or footstool to help make your journey more comfortable. However, the best way to reduce your stress and fatigue is to give yourself regular pit stops or breaks and do some stretches and exercises.
In the car, you can do Triceps Pushes to exercise your triceps. Hold the steering wheel, a ledge or railing tightly while keeping your elbows bent. Straighten your elbows and push your back into the seat and hold for a few seconds. Try doing around eight repetitions and repeat as often as you need.
Another exercise is Seat Pushes. Sitting straight with your feet flat on the floor. Place your hands flat on the seat beside your hips, keeping your elbows bent. Straighten your elbows to lift your butt up off the seat. Do around eight repetitions and repeat as often as you need.
If you’re driving only do these exercises when the car is stationary!
Seated Side Bends are another good exercise for your back, shoulders and neck. Sit tall, with your hands behind your head and your fingers clasped. Keep your spine straight and slowly bend to one side. Hold for a few seconds then return to upright and slow bend to the other side. Repeat a few times on each side.
Then try Calf Raises & Toe Points. Place your feet flat on the floor. Lift your heels high, putting pressure into the balls of your feet and toes. Then rock back on your heels and lift the toes as high as possible. Do around 10 repetitions.
If you have a short stop on your journey, make sure you always get out of your seat and move. Sitting still for extended periods can cause lots of health problems such as blood clots, varicose veins, and back issues. Here are some exercises you can do outside of the vehicle in which you’re travelling.
Lunges. Stand tall with feet hip-width apart, engage your core, and step forward with one leg and place your heel flat on the floor. Lower your body straight down until both knees are at 90 degrees. Keep your body and weight above the back leg. Return to the starting position and change to the opposite leg. Do as many as you can without extreme discomfort.
Push-Ups Place your hand’s shoulder-distance apart on a sturdy surface, like a car’s bumper or boot. A picnic table or bench, or a flat fence will also do. Step your feet back keeping your body straight. Bend your elbows 90 degrees as you lower your chest. Exhale as you push up. Do as many as you can without extreme discomfort.
Toe Taps Standing tall with your core engaged, lift your knees high to tap your toe to the car bumper, bench, or ledge. Alternate each leg. Repeat for a desired number of sets. Start with five repetitions for each leg but build up as it becomes easier.
There are many more exercises you can do while travelling. If you are having trouble finding an appropriate exercise, just call 1800 644 189 Infoline for advice on an exercise that suits you.