Jennifer Purdie recently had to figure out what to do with a two-hour layover at San Francisco International Airport. She could have gone to a bar and had a cocktail. But she wanted to try something healthier. So she pulled workout pants and a T-shirt out of her carry-on bag and stopped by the airport’s new yoga room. Afterward, she changed in the bathroom, cleaned up with some antiseptic wipes, and boarded her flight in time. "I try to find a fitness option, especially for long layovers, so I don’t feel like I’m wasting my time," she says. "It kind of de-stresses you."
As people becomes more conscious of the obesity problem, even airports are getting into the fitness craze. With delays and long layovers increasingly common, airports are offering travellers alternatives to passing the hours on a bar stool. San Francisco International unveiled its yoga room, painted in a calming blue palette, last month in its recently refurbished Terminal 2. Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport has a 2.25-kilometre marked walking path in a couple of concourses. At Los Angeles International Airport, travellers can hit an 18-hole golf course or do yoga or tai chi at the LAX Flag Courtyard.
A number of airport hotels also have opened up their fitness centers to all - for a fee. For $30 you won’t have to leave Terminal D of Dallas/Fort Worth Airport to work out. Pop over to the Grand Hyatt’s full-service fitness center and spa. Lockers are designed for carry-on bags, and workout clothes are available for purchase. Above the U.S. Departures area in Vancouver International Airport in Canada, the Fairmont Vancouver Airport hotel offers travellers a health club and pool for an $18 day pass. At the Hilton Chicago O’Hare Airport, non-guests can buy day passes for $10 or $19, depending on their loyalty status.