It’s minus 20 degrees celsius, and you are at the height of Mount Everest. In 12 hours it will be plus 40 degrees and you will have repressurised to below 3,000m, only to repeat this cycle for five days! How do you survive?
For the pilots of Solar Impulse, the lifesaving techniques can be found in the asanas and pramayamas of yoga. Working withSanjeev Bhanot, a professional yoga trainer with over 20 years professional experience, André Borschberg has been able to address the difficulties of warming the body with little available oxygen, and cooling the body in the heat of the sun.
"Among these technical innovations of Solar Impulse is the calm of yoga, including a modified sun salutation," said André Borschberg. "Sanjeev’s training in collaboration with Hirslanden Clinics has given us the best preparation for the upcoming challenge, and his expertise has been invaluable in finding practical solutions within the constraints of the cockpit."
Si2’s single seater cockpit acts as a yoga mat – no need at all for carry-on luggage for pilots André Borschberg and Bertrand Piccard. The seat has been specifically designed to be lowered into a horizontal position, providing enough space for the pilot to fully stretch out. Sanjeev has been able to train with André to identify other points in the cockpit that the pilots can use to push against and support themselves during the flights of up to 120 hours.
Sanjeev founded YogaLife in 1999, and describes how AntasthaYoga is applied to Solar Impulse here :
Originally from Dungargarh in Rajasthan, India, Sanjeev is now based in Switzerland. He will accompany the Si2 for the duration of the First Round-The-World Solar Flight, and can be followed on these social media channels: