This is the one item you should always take with you on a flight

It's probably not something you'd ever think of putting in your hand luggage, though...

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Shadow of plane on cloud.


We all have our own lists of essentials when we travel.

See also: How to pack your suitcase like a pro

See also: The coat that can store 15kg of airport luggage

These are the sort of items which provide comfort (warm socks, neck pillows); alleviate boredom (books, magazines, music) and can block out the more annoying members of the public (ear plugs, sleeping tablets).

Plane journeys in particular may require a secret arsenal of objects, lotions and potions.

After all, spending hours in a pressurised metal tube with dozens of strangers is not always the nicest experience.

If you wanted to provide further comfort, there is one surprising item which could really help when on a flight.

It is... A tennis ball.

Admittedly, a tennis ball probably doesn't spring to mind when you're packing your hand luggage, but having one to hand may do you a world of good.

Credits: Getty

How?

There are several unpleasant side-effects to flying. These include joint pain and aches as your muscles tighten.

Areas commonly affected tend to be the soles of your feet, small of your back and other trigger points across your body.

A tennis ball, however, can help with these, surgeon Ali Ghoz from the London Orthapedic Clinic told The Daily Star.

Simply press the tennis ball to the sore/ tense area, adding pressure until you feel "the good kind" of pain.

Use of the tennis ball also means you need not disturb your neighbour by moving excessively to massage your feet or legs.

"By taking a tennis ball or a massager on the plane this will help increase circulation.

"If you don't have a massager, you can use your hands to stroke your muscles from the ankles upwards which will get the blood flowing back to your heart."

Dr Ghoz also advises against drinking heavy drinks, slouching and wearing restrictive clothing, and recommends making full use of the footrest and getting up to walk as much as possible.


Top ten weirdest items packed for a holiday

Top ten weirdest items packed for a holiday