Leg Vein Health

Updated 27 January 2016

In-flight fitness

Movement and simple exercises can help prevent the discomfort and may thwart more serious problems, such as deep-vein thrombosis when you're on a plane.


If you're a jet setter, you'll be well aware of the aches and pains that accompany long hours of sitting in a plane.

However, movement and simple exercises can help prevent the discomfort and may thwart more serious problems, such as deep-vein thrombosis.

Read: Travelling increases thrombosis risk

Take action:

 - Extend both legs and move both feet back and forth in a circular motion. Move the knee up to the chest and hold the stretch for at least 15 seconds. Put both feet on the floor and point them upward. Also, put both feet flat and lift both heels as high as possible.

 - Do do some heel raises, toe lifts, ankle circles, overhead stretches, back twists, curl downs and toe-heel walking.

 - Make sure you get up and walk around at least every two hours, and try not to sleep more than four hours at a time.

Read: Keep those travel legs moving 

 - Stay hydrated, wear loose-fitting clothing, eat light meals and limit your alcohol consumption.

 - Elderly people and those with circulation problems should wear compression stockings that help prevent clots from forming in the deep veins.

These exercises will ensure that your leg muscles don't contract and will help prevent fluid buildup in the legs.


Leg pain signals deadly blood clots  

Danger lurking in your veins 

Cabin air linked to DVT 


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Leg vein expert

Dr. Riaz Motara is a specialist physician and cardiologist. He has an interest in preventative cardiology. He runs Veinsculpt, the first and only comprehensive vein clinic in South Africa, using endo-venous laser ablation as the treatment of choice.He also operates the only Women's Heart Clinic in South Africa.

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