THE GEAR • January 2016
Pilots and frequent flyers agree – exercise is one of the best ways to beat jetlag and boost your mood while travelling. The good news, says The Club’s tech expert Derek Adams, is you can easily turn your hotel room into a fitness studio. Here are the travel-friendly gadgets and apps to help you do it
Not inclined to travel with a suitcase full of exercise paraphernalia? This isn’t neccessary when your smartphone can provide the whole deal. Download Sworkit (iOS and Android, free) and discover everything you need for a guided workout, all without equipment. The app features a range of film sequences, from five minutes to an hour, which can be combined for a challenging fitness routine. Choose from cardio, strength-building, yoga and even stretching.
Kickstarter-funded Monkii Bars ($149) are a stand-out product. Made in the US, these suspension trainers fit into the smallest travel bag and quickly convert into a full bodyweight exercise system. Inside each bar is a roll of thin but incredibly strong suspension line – made from the same fibre found in rock-climbing rope. To use it, simply find the nearest immovable object (a tree branch is best), attach the lines and voila, instant resistance training wherever you are. A door adaptor is available for those who want to avoid the chill outside.
Working under the strapline ‘Heroes aren’t born, they’re trained’, 7 Minute Superhero Workout (Android and iOS, £2.29) provides a fun way to stay motivated while exercising. Your job is to save the world while undertaking fitness quests, from story-led missions and quick-fire workouts to a battle against imaginary aliens and a series of against-the-clock fitness challenges. The game also features motion tracking, and records every rep performed and calorie burned.
If weight training is your preferred route to fitness, consider a pair of travel-friendly AquaBells ($47). These innovative hollow dumbbells weigh less than a kilogram when empty and fold flat for easy transport. Simply fill the chambers with water to give you up to 16lbs (7.25kgs) of weight in each hand. You can also use them for resistance training in the pool by replacing the water with air.
Exercise to help you sleep? Yoga could be the solution. With Yoga Studio (iOS, £2.99) the emphasis is on gentle, easy-to-follow animated exercises that are both slow and restrained. The music, too, is of the calming, ambient variety and the softly spoken voiceover makes sure you can easily follow along. Combine this with another high-intensity exercise app for a full-body workout, or use alone to focus on stretching and toning.
Working with the UK’s leading sleep expert, Dr. Chris Idzikowski, BA has developed the ultimate jet lag advisor. Click here for advice on how to minimise the effects