Friday, July 27, 2012


FOOD - AT AIRPORTS OF ALL PLACES - Airports - famous for long stressful waits and greasy hot dogs on warming rollers - have gone on a health kick. Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and San Francisco International Airport both now offer free yoga rooms in terminals. Several airports, including Indianapolis, Cleveland, St. Louis and DFW, have laid out half-mile walking paths through terminals in conjunction with the American Heart Association, hoping to turn "mall walkers" into "terminal walkers." And many are pushing vendors to offer options that are lower in fat and calories - even writing healthy-food requirements into new leases. 
"There is a lot of competition between airports," said Kevin Smith, assistant vice president for terminal management at DFW. "We want to be the healthiest airport in the nation." Of course, travelers may say in airport surveys that they want healthy options, then splurge on unhealthy things when they get to the airport. "Going healthy just isn't an option. It's what passengers are looking for," said Zenola Campbell, vice president of concessions at DFW.

"What passengers want is choice. If I want to, I can go to McDonald's. Or I can stop by Au Bon Pain and pick up yogurt and fruit." Airports can be some of the most-unhealthy places used by millions of people. Running with baggage or seething over canceled flights or airline snafus can contribute to heart attacks. DFW averages nine calls a day for all kinds of medical emergencies, and transports three patients a day to hospitals. The airport had 210 patients with cardiac issues last year. During one big disruption, DFW's Mr. Smith noticed customers doing yoga in a gate area with their own mats. They were stuck for six hours, and decided to make the best of it.  So DFW took an alcove in an out-of-the-way area at the end of Terminal D, in a connector walkway to Terminal B, and created a yoga room. 
The airport supplies mats and one hour-long yoga video that plays on a continuous loop. Big windows look out on a line of planes at Terminal D, but privacy screens keep other travelers from gazing in. Some travelers have used the space for meditation and breathing exercises, airport officials say.

A five hour delay at the airport can cause a traveler's stress level to go through the roof. Now, international airports offer free yoga rooms in terminals for passengers and airline workers who want to exercise some stress away, in an effort to get passengers moving but also to increase revenue.  Hatha-yoga is not a separate system of yoga. It is one of the eight steps of Raja-yoga. Nonetheless, it can be used separately if only for helping keep the body and mind fit and in shape.

Hatha yoga is a system of handling the physical body so that the mind and the nerve system are calmed and quieted. It is primarily a means to prepare oneself for meditation. Hatha yoga is founded on a principle of putting the physical body into a position so that the nerve currents in the physical body get tuned up to a perfect pitch. It is like tuning the strings on a violin; if you tune the violin just right, then each string will be in harmony with the other strings. ... When physical tensions are released through Hatha yoga, mental-emotional tensions are automatically dissolved. This is a great secret and a wonderful tool that you can use every day of your life. Free the mind of thoughts and tensions and you will be more aware, more alive, more serene. As you perform the Hatha yoga asanas, put out of your mind all thoughts relating to your work, family, friends, associates, problems and challenges that normally concern you. Relax. Relax. Relax. Be completely at peace with yourself and fully enjoy this contemplative art.

What Is Hinduism?
Hinduism Today Magazine
Chapter 34: "Hatha Yoga"
"A 24-Posture System of Body Tuning and Preparation for Meditation"

Published by dasavatara das - "Vedic Views on World News"