Enjoy and practice yoga with a unique twist at AcroYoga Dubai

Hiba Khan 28/12/2017
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Unique form of excercise: AcroYoga has great mental and physical benefits.

Whether you are a fitness freak or not, everyone has either heard of yoga or knows someone who practices it and frequently posts photos of their bodies contorted in impossible (not to mention painful) poses on social media. This ancient Indian exercise has become one of the most well known and mainstream fitness activities all over the world, to the point that every now and then the fitness routine is spiced up with some crazy twist.

That is exactly what I thought when I heard of AcroYoga… “Oh, just another way to make yoga cool”, but what they don’t realise is that yoga is already settled peacefully at the zenith of coolness. Being the kind of person who is easily impressed by other people twisting their bodies in weird ways, I just assumed that yoga can’t get any more challenging or aesthetically pleasing to look at than it already is – if it’s done right, of course. But boy, was I wrong.

Having come from a family where my mum was a seasoned yogi, I was aware of some of the basic postures in yoga, but once I started dabbling in AcroYoga, I realised it was a different ballgame altogether. As one can tell from the name, AcroYoga combines the concepts and techniques of acrobatics and yoga that has great mental and physical benefits.

AcroYoga can help you improve your relationships.

AcroYoga can help you improve your relationships.

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AcroYoga involves the efforts of a base, flyer, and spotter. The base stays in contact with the ground that supports the flyer as they carry out dynamic positions on them. The spotter is necessary to ensure the flyer’s stability on the base and to support them. Angela Guo, the acrobatics and calisthenics instructor at Pole Fit Dubai, says: “This is a partner movement practice that encourages the practitioner to be fully embodied, not only to themselves but also to one another as well. AcroYoga is just a beautiful union of community, play and self-discovery.”

Credited for having immense mental and physical benefits, AcroYoga enhances body awareness, builds up strength and is ideal for couples for better bonding. “To have awareness of your own body in space is incredibly empowering. Understanding your impact on another person through movement fosters empathy and synergy,” adds Guo.

If you’re of a smaller stature, then you’re more likely to act as the flyer than the base, as it was in my case. Being the flyer gave me the opportunity to meet random strangers in the most fun possible way like falling flat on their faces. The flyer is precariously balanced right over the base and the spotter ensures stability and at times provides the much-needed moral support. The base has to use their strength and place their hands properly to maintain the flyer’s balance.

AcroYoga is just a beautiful union of community, play and self-discovery

AcroYoga is just a beautiful union of community, play and self-discovery

AcroYoga is a fun way for couples and friends to bond, and is a great team and trust building exercise. AcroYoga instructor, Vipin Methasery said: “The experience of taking flight with AcroYoga instantly dissolves fears and invites practitioners to tap into new and infinite possibilities of communication, trust, and union. By combining acrobatics, yoga, and healing arts, the practice of AcroYoga has built a community of active teachers and practitioners all over the world.”

Vipin further explained that AcroYoga consists of three main elements: solar acrobatic practices, lunar therapeutic practices and then the yogic practices. The partner exercise combines solar and lunar yoga poses, where the participants have to harmonise with each other as the night and the day. This exercise is credited with not only improving relationships, but saving them as well.

AcroYoga practitioners have formed a thriving community in the UAE and organise regular workshops and get together, where you too can try your hand at this amazing workout with your partner and friends. The next class will be held this Friday (Dec 29) at Zabeel Park from 10:30 to noon. For more information, follow AcroYoga Dubai on Facebook.

What: AcroYoga Dubai

Contact: 055 7732 585

Verdict: Great way to get fit with friends and also improve your relationships

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Top tips to stay committed and motivated to your training

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Most of us can benefit from a little nudge on how to stay motivated and stay committed to our sweat routines!

Here are some tips on how you can help yourself.

Think of workouts as an essential component to your routine…

Most people follow a specific routine to how they prepare for the day or how they commute home from work.

There’s no good reason why working out should be left out of daily routines.

If your mindset is workouts are as essential as showering, brushing teeth, and drinking water, than there’s no real reason why it is not part of your routine already.

Turn working out into a habit…

Whether it’s yoga or a quick 30 minute class, turn sweat sessions into a habit and schedule exercises like how you would schedule in meetings.

Have it as a must-do not just a to-do! Remember it takes about 30-40 days to form a new habit.

Remember to hit refresh from time to time…

Whether it’s a change in playlist or a change in workout type, doing the same thing time and time again can get boring and we all know once boredom sets in we’ll lose enthusiasm for anything.

If you’re one of those regulars at the gym who likes to switch out all the noise and listen to your own jams, browse through different playlists on Spotify or dig through old playlists to refresh your workout beats.

If you’ve been doing the same workout every week for months and you’re starting to lose enthusiasm, then it’s probably time to switch up your routine (even just a little).

Try out a new class one day, try out a new workout another week, or maybe run outside for a change; whatever you decide, the goal is inject something new into your routine.

Find a workout buddy…

This is one of the most underrated encouragement tools of all time!

Find a workout buddy (or a group of you) who will commit to the same sweat routine to help keep you on track.

Rather than each workout feeling like a chore, your workout sessions will feel more like a social occasion (I promise you this slight change made a major difference in my routine).

GuavaPass is the first and largest fitness community of its kind in Dubai, offering an unlimited membership to group fitness classes at over 70 top studios across the city. Find out more at guavapass.com.

This article is written by Tasha Kolonas and originally appeared on the GuavaPass blog. Find out more about GuavaPass’ tips at blog.guavapass.com

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Prepare for the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon with Jennifer Chalouhi

Sport360 staff 21/12/2017

Dubai-based personal trainer Jennifer Chalouhi (@jennifercfit) is sharing valuable tips to help people prepare for the 2018 Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon that takes place on January 26.

In the video below, Chalouhi demonstrates some warm-ups and dynamic stretches to show you how to take care of your body while training for the marathon.

Her warm-up routine includes sets using the jump rope, back lunge bench step-ups and jumping jacks. She also shows some key core and strength training exercises like bicycles, Russian twists and planks. Chalouhi also stresses the importance of hydration and shares a recipe for her favourite power shake.
If you're preparing for the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon, let Chalouhi know your reason to run using the hash-tag #RunForAReason.

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