Staying healthy while we travel continues to be one of the biggest challenges for those who travel regularly. This is especially true for frequent flyers and those who find themselves traveling through airports and on planes constantly.

In-flight wellness is particularly hard to achieve when you’re cooped up in a small seat for hours, and it’s even worse with long-haul flights.

RECOMMENDED: Cathay Pacific’s New In-flight Wellbeing Program is Pure Zen in the Air

In-flight wellness challenges

On my recent flight from Toronto to Las Vegas, which isn’t a very long flight (it’s about 4-5 hours), I found it difficult to get comfortable enough to get a nap in, and hard to stay well hydrated with the tiny cups of water offered. My leg muscles tend to cramp up when I’m not moving around enough on flights too, and poorly designed seats can cut off circulation leading to pain and numbness. I typically have to get up multiple times to walk around.

Needless to say, flights are a huge challenge for maintaining proper health and wellness. For many people the question is still, simply, how am I supposed to stretch on a plane?

Well, Hawaiian Airlines now has an answer that’s accessible to everyone via their in-flight entertainment system.

Hawaiian Airlines’ new in-flight wellness content

Health-conscious travelers on Hawaiian Airlines’ transpacific flights can now choose from a selection of wellness content meant to enhance the wellbeing of passengers before, during and post-flight. The in-flight wellness content includes a series of stretches and breathing exercises.

It turns out breathing is a really important component of our mental health. Learning how to focus on and moderate our breathing is linked to improvements in cognitive capacities like attention and memory. Breathing has always been a central element of some of the most ancient Yogic practices, but scientists are making new discoveries every day about just how important this seemingly insignificant and automatic activity is for our health.

The onboard content, titled “Ola Pono” or “Live Well” in Hawaiian, was produced exclusively by the airline. The stretches and breathing portion is hosted by Wainani Arnold, a Honolulu movement specialist and founder of the Wainani Wellness Center.

Arnold is a hula dancer and choreographer with over 15 years experience teaching yoga, dance, pilates and gyrotonic. That last one is an exercise method using spiraling, circular movements and rhythmic repetitions with corresponding breathing patterns.

The wellness video series

The video series is separated into themes that cover three areas of inspiration: air, sea and land.

“Air” is the series’ first chapter, which takes guests through stretches and breathing exercises that can be done on the aircraft or in an airport. There are three videos in total hosted by Wainani Arnold.

“Sea” follows and takes viewers on a voyage through Mākaha on the west side of O‘ahu with virtual tour guide Brian Keaulana, a Hawaiian surfer, lifeguard and waterman, and his daughter, Ha‘a Keaulana. This series focuses on the healing properties of water.

“Land” is the final series, which highlights Hawaii’s unique agriculture through visits to farms and local markets. This series focuses on good nutrition.

Holistic wellness approaches

One thing we really like about the airline’s new wellness content is its holistic approach. It includes nutrition alongside fitness and weaves in discussions of local ingredients, history, and connection to the natural landscape. It offers a way to stay fit before, during and after your journey in a way that supports good overall health.

We can’t wait to see more airlines get on board with this kind of wellness offering!

Have you tried the new wellness program from Hawaiian Airlines? Let us know what you think in the comments below!

Nicola Brown

Senior Editor at Vane Magazine

Nicola is an international award-winning writer, editor and communication consultant based in Toronto. She has traveled to 32 countries so far and is always poised to head out the door again. She loves both the visceral and intellectual dimensions of travel, and will passionately argue for its psychological paybacks, especially after a few glasses of wine. Having spent many years on the road and in the air, she's interested in how travelers can maintain a healthy mind and body through it all.

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

TRAVEL WITH US

SIGN UP TO RECEIVE OUR BEST TRAVEL, AIRPORT, AND WELLNESS TIPS.
By signing up, you agree to periodic email marketing from Vane to the email address you provided. Web Terms and Conditions and Privacy and Cookie Policy.