Many of you are possibly flying off to find the guarantee of some sun. That usually means travelling a fair distance. Sitting for long periods of time, whether on car or airline journeys, can increase risk of developing blood clots, also unknown as deep vein thrombosis. Simple exercises, done regularly each hour during a journey, can help blood circulation and reduce risk of developing clots.


Here are a few simple exercises that you can do:

Seated leg exercises

  • Rotate your feet at your ankles, 10 times clockwise then 10 times counter clockwise.
  • With your feet flat on the floor, lift your heels as high as you can and then your toes. Repeat each 10 times.
  • Make fists and place your hands on the outer sides of your knees with your feet flat on the floor. Activate your leg and buttock muscles to push your legs out against your fists. Hold this for five seconds, resisting the movement by activating your arm muscles. Relax, move your fists to the inner sides of your knees. This time push your legs together and resist this movement with your arms. Again, holding for five seconds. Repeat each movement 5 times.
  • Cross one leg over the other, place your hands around your knee and bring your knee up and towards your opposite shoulder. Hold this stretch for 20 seconds. Then repeat with the other leg.


Standing Leg Exercises

  • While standing, lift yourself onto your toes, hold for the count of three; repeat five times.
  • Hold on to the back of a seat while standing on one leg; bend the other leg behind you, grab the ankle and pull your heel towards your bum to stretch the front muscles in your thigh. Then do the same to the other leg.


Travel Tips to Aid Blood Circulation.

  1. Once every hour, get up and walk around the cabin.
  2. Wear clothing that is loose and comfortable while seated.
  3. Wear compression socks.
  4. Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water.
  5. Avoid dehydrating products such as alcohol, caffeine, decongestants and sleeping pills.

Enjoy your holidays.

Written by Anne French