Sitting for hours on long-haul flights can be rough on the body and the brain. Yet for travelers, the standard airplane layout of narrow, forward-facing seats in tightly packed cabins doesn't offer much in the way of movement.
So what if you could squeeze in a workout — or maybe even a spin or yoga class — at an in-flight gym?
That's the idea behind Transpose, a project of Airbus' Silicon Valley outpost known as A³. It has partnered with Reebok and Peloton to display (through May 19) a prototype 'flying gym' module — complete with stationary bikes, yoga mats, resistance stations and other workout equipment — at Mineta San Jose International Airport.
"For most people, the future of flight will still be on large commercial aircraft," Transpose project executive Jason Chua told CNBC.
"We're trying to allow for new types of in-flight experiences with a modular cabin architecture that allows for customized spaces that can be loaded and unloaded onto aircraft very rapidly," he added.
Beyond gyms, Transpose cabin modules can be stand-ins for spas, napping pods, gaming centers, dining areas, yoga studios, or even, as one traveler suggested, a karaoke lounge. Chua suggested that each creative design would offer new ways for airlines to generate revenue, and for brands to engage with flyers beyond standard in-flight branding.