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Thursday, October 15, 2009

Workouts while on the Road

Posted by patrick

By Curt Joel

Workouts for Travelers

Excited about your vacation? Even though traveling is fun, getting to your vacation destination-whether by plane, train, automobile-often involves lengthy periods of sitting. Hours of sitting associated with air travel-first in the airport lounge & then on the plane can leave you tight before your vacation has even started!

To help combat potential problems associated with traveling, try these suggestions below from L. Leiber, who earned her master's degree in public health from Berkeley, and teaches Pilates in Oakland, CA.

Seated Exercises

How can you combat the negative effects of waiting at the airport for your flight? Try some of these seated exercises. They'll improve your posture and help prevent fatigue.

Put your feet on the floor, just a couple inches away from each other.

Sit tall.

Tip your hips so that your pelvis is vertical.

Lengthen your neck, like a giraffe. Do this by pushing your shoulders away from your ears.

Breathe in, then exhale. When you exhale, be sure to pull your abs in. Do this after every seated exercise.

Figure four stretching. Do this by placing your ankle on your opposite knee. Lean forward until you feel a deep stretch on the outsie of the hips. Repeat on the other side.

Seated Twist (Not for People With Disk Problems). Keeping knees and hips facing front, reach around to one side with both hands and hold onto back of chair. Breathe in. On exhalation, rotate rib cage and look over back of chair while keeping as much length in spine as possible. Hold stretch for 10-15 seconds. Return to start position and repeat, twisting to other side.

Shoulder Shrugs & Rolls. Inhale and lift shoulders up to your ears. Exhale as you push your shoulders back and down, open your chest & let your shoulder blades move together. Continue to push your shoulders down and back. Repeat this exercise three to five times.

Neck stretch. Gently press your right ear toward your right shoulder while maintaining good posture. Keep your chin tucked in slightly while you perform this stretch. Feel the stretch on the left side of your neck. Release gently.

Rock the Baby. With right hand on left elbow and left hand on right elbow, hold folded arms out in front of chest. Draw right elbow as far as you can to the right to stretch outside of left shoulder. Draw left elbow as far as you can to the left to stretch outside of right shoulder. Repeat 2-3 times on each side.

When You Are Standing: Waiting to get passed security at the airport is the first of many times your will stand in line on your trip. Make the best use of your time with some of these exercises.

Footwork. Stand with feet parallel, 2-3 inches apart, balancing weight equally on both feet. Come up onto balls of feet, and slowly lower heels to floor, keeping weight centered. Repeat 8-1 0 times.

Prancing in Place. Use same start position as in exercise above. Come up onto balls of feet. Lower one heel to floor while keeping other heel raised. Alternately press one heel up as other heel comes down to floor. Repeat 12-15 times.

Knee Lift. While keeping your hips parallel to the floor, raise your knee the femur is level with the ground. Be sure keep your spine relaxed. Balance like this for fifteen to thirty seconds. Put your foot back on the ground and repeat for the other leg.

Roll-Down. Bring chin to chest and slowly roll down, one vertebra at a time until spine is flexed forward, arms hanging toward floor. Bend knees slightly and roll up, stacking vertebrae one at a time, bringing head up last. Repeat 2-3 times.

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