≡ Menu

NYTimes Confirms: Airports Are Perfect Place To Relax and Yoga

in Public Display of Yoga, Thanks for the tip, YD News

Barely allowing us to inhale after uttering the Q: Is there too much yoga coverage? the New York Times goes and lays another one on us. Though we gotta admit it tickles us that this yoga news is in the ‘Business Day’ section. This one’s about yoga: serious business for frequent travelers.

Meet Steve Boerema, just your ordinary 45-year-old yacht consultant who travels the world about 150 days out of the year. It’s tough on his fam (wife and 2 kids) and it’s tough on his body. How does he cope?

“Initially, it helped me dealing with homesickness and melancholy,” said Mr. Boerema, who is married with two teenage children. “All of us on the road suffer some sort of guilt, being away from our families. Yoga really calmed my head, helped keep me from thinking about things I had no control of.”

So he finds a nice corner and stands on his head – hey that looks familiar! A sirsa challenge candidate?

Meet Sarah Howell, a 29-year-old sales trainer for a software company based in Austin, TX who travels 2-3 days a week:

[She says she’s] “a better person and certainly a better employee,” when she practices yoga while on her business trips. “I’m better able to focus on the task at hand,” she said.

But don’t take their word for it! [insert experts]

Michele Olson, an exercise physiologist at Auburn University Montgomery in Alabama:

“If you’re sitting for hours on a plane, your hip flexors and hamstrings and other muscles shorten, and we know that can lead to back problems,” Dr. Olson says. “Yoga, because it involves a lot of moves and positions that lengthen those muscles, can be very beneficial in combating joint stiffness at the hip joint and preventing back problems.”

Christopher Berger, an exercise physiologist at the University of Pittsburgh (leading a task force for the American College of Sports Medicine called “Exercise Is Medicine on the Fly,”):

“Since 9/11, we have very long lines, unpredictable searches and more demands on people,” he said. “There’s certainly psychological stress associated with that. One of our goals for this task force is to get people to use airports as places to blow off that steam.”

Et voila! Airports: the perfect place to relax! The bottom of the article has some tips and poses from successful yogapreneur Beryl Bender Birch.

EarlierYoga News is Taking Over the World (media outlets)!

Insane on an Airplane: Yoga in the Aisle

Up(side Down) in the Sky: Yoga For Jet Lag

14 comments… add one
  • airports are most definitely the perfect places to do some yoga. on my last trip I was in 11 airports so I definitely did yoga on more than one continent and over the Persian Gulf!

  • Hey, wait a minute. Don’t these people have pay Cora Wen a royalty if they do headstands in public. I believe she has the patent on that.

    Bob Weisenberg

  • Yogini5

    I’ll trade you one wheel for one headstand … How many upward dogs equal one crow?

    By the time I’d ever get to fly, I will need all the energizing moves I could get, never mind centering or enervating … !

    This whole thing is getting to be just like baseball cards to me …

  • Steve Boerema

    It’s been doing me right.

  • admin

    Why hello Steve! thanks so much for commenting 🙂
    We’re big fans of airport sirsasana here. have you ever had anyone join in with you?
    happy travels!

  • Yoga would indeed counteract the debilitating ergonomics of airplane seats. Who’s the idiot that designed those hunched-over, no-lumbar-support monstrosities?

    Sirsasana at airports. OK, although it is rather showy and not my style. If I DID do it, I’d do it on a towel (even paper towels) for hair hygiene!

  • i’m with yogaspy here ~ while i like to do a little stretching in airports, i feel too showy and conspicuous if i break out the full-on asanas. i also just can’t get down on those icky airport floors. so i usually find myself in the bar, doing gin-and-tonic-asana during layovers.

    yogadawg had an idea for airport yoga studios, which i think is brilliant. i’m surprised that nobody has developed this idea yet. especially since you can do practically everything else (shop, eat, drink, get massages/haircuts/manicures) in airports these days.

  • Usually, I can find a little corner in an airport terminal to stretch into basic asanas. I wrote a little blog post about practicing yoga in airport terminals a few years ago when I was traveling a lot.

    yogadawg : great idea! >> airport yoga studio…just a space / place for yoga would be nice

  • Great idea. On infrequent occasions, I’ll do something off to the side in the office; sometimes to let off steam, sometimes to make a point to the patient/client/applicant that I’m not kidding when I say that it’s good for you and that if I can do it anyone can! BTW: NEVER make a point of SHOWING off an asana. I never even demo it to friends or family except on rare occasion to make some particular point about a posture. On occasion, I’ll use a yoga principle to assist in a therapeutic maneuver — chest openers lend courage, and chin tuck can help neck pain, etc. — but those are usually without having said what I’m doing or why — yet.

  • Sarah Howell

    I’ve found over the holidays that I need yoga in the airports even more than ever before….. Although I am not as brave as Mr. Boerema with his headstands, I will certainly do some seated poses and forward bends. And then I find myself much more tolerant of my fellow passengers.

  • Haha, awesome! I’ve done it pretty much everywhere, including in the office (anything from chair yoga to a brain-charging headstand). Hell, why not? Our bodies are getting barraged with cramping and inertia on planes and office chairs. Anything that will help us be our best and most productive!

Leave a Comment