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To reduce aches and planes on flights, try yoga

life 25/06/2018

There's nothing worse than settling in to your long-haul flight only to find you're cramped, can't sleep or have swollen ankles. 

But a forward-thinking group may have the answer to alleviating the pain, offering free yoga lessons for travellers at the Christchurch International Airport.

Thursday marked International Yoga Day which got off to a flying start. 

Stretch and relaxation tutor Lauren Wells runs the sessions to help promote health and wellbeing for travellers before long haul flights. 

"It's really important I think it helps prepare your body and mind, helps reduce anxiety and gets the blood flowing and oxygen through yourself.

"So I think it's important to have a nice, safe, happy flight."

Jetlag, swollen ankles, cramp and deep vein thrombosis are just some effects a person can experience on a long haul flight.

If you can continue the movement while you're on the flight, get some nice stretching in before and afterwards, it can help relieve that pressure on your body," Ms Wells says. 

And she even has a little advice for the timid travellers, who wouldn't think about using the space.

"Don't be scared of it, don't be intimidated.

"Just come by do whatever you need to do whether it is just relaxing and lying there and getting your mind ready for your flight or travel - whatever you need just use the space for yourself."

Nine other airports across the world provide a similar space allowing passengers to stretch, rest, relax and breathe. 

The Christchurch Airport is the first in New Zealand to offer a dedicated yoga space for long-haul travellers.

Travelling to Singapore, Jane Moore knows she'll feel 10 times better after doing yoga when she lands - unlike her husband, who opted out of having a stretch. 

It's definitely good for your muscles, and stops the aches and pains when your sitting down for a long time,

"He'll be the one complaining about being sore and I won't, so he should've joined in."

Airport staff came up with idea for the yoga space after thinking what they would like to have before a long-haul flight.

It has seen a steady stream of people using the service since it started in March.