Hello Cairenes,

Alright so, (this is going to make me sound like I didn’t have a vocabulary quiz every week in school) yoga is AMAZING.

It’s definitely worth the hype if you ask me.

I started having an interest in yoga back in April. I was tired, stressed, emotionally drained, and I needed something new to get me out of the funk I was in. Exercise is my therapy, and I was ready to meet my next therapist: yoga. Needless to say, it did the job. I was challenged, happy, and relaxed. One hour of yoga makes you feel like you have your whole life sorted out (even though no one ever really has their life sorted out). After every class, you get this high that just keeps you positive all throughout the day.

Before I really got into yoga I thought it would be boring and easy. I thought I wasn’t flexible enough, that I wouldn’t find it challenging in the way that I wanted to be challenged. Let me explain, the last sport I completely dedicated every fibre of my being to (before finding yoga of course), was horseback riding. I was a competing show jumper and I believed nothing would ever satisfy me after experiencing that constant feeling of adrenaline rushing through my body with every hurdle I’d jump. I thought I would never experience a deeper connection than the connection I had built with the horses I’d ride. To my surprise yoga did just that. IT REALLY DID.

I first started falling for yoga when I started practicing Aerial Yoga with Ghada El Marakby. If I had practiced any other variation first I don’t think it would have been the best choice for me. Aerial yoga allowed me to explore that factor of fear that I enjoyed so much about horseback riding. It allowed me to experience that adrenaline rush I was longing for through inversions that had me hanging from the ceiling. That’s when I started to learn about what yoga was really about. I started doing my research and understanding the true essence of a yoga practice. Around that same time, one of my best friends Amira Ayman completed her Yoga teachers training!

I started attending her classes too and exploring Yin yoga and Vinyasa yoga. That’s when I really got to rekindle the connection I missed with the horses. But this time, I had that beautiful connection with myself. Yoga really taught me to get connected with my body and really feel every motion and movement that I learned to practice with my teachers. The practice taught me to control my mind and stay present at the moment. It taught me to breathe properly.

I learned how to really feel my breathing feed my cells. It’s called “channeling your breath” and it is very real! It began to get addictive when I started seeing my progress. Day after day I would practice the poses in class, and seeing myself stretch deeper and further made the practice so worth it. Before I started practicing yoga, I could barely even sit with my legs crossed! Now I can go for splits and fold all the way down in pigeon prep. It feels so rewarding and relaxing all at the same time.

Since yoga requires so much commitment, it has taught me the importance of patience. It also taught me to listen to my body and to really push myself. The body is capable of so much more than we give it credit for. If you just let your self-perception go, and really experiment with your breathing, and your poses you’ll really surprise yourself. It takes time to really build a solid yoga practice, and you really need to give it time. One of the most valuable things you’ll ever gain from yoga is the appreciation that you are always learning and growing. There is no end point to self-development. There is always more to explore.

Yoga really is worth all the attention it gets. It’s getting even more and more popular by the day and there are so many teachers and places who offer classes all over Cairo. You can learn more about the Egyptian yoga scene by visiting the website bindubyohoud.com. This is where you’ll find everything you need to practice: from yoga mats to teacher profiles! I’m so lucky I got to love the practice through my teachers. They’ve taught me so much about myself.

Yours Truly,

The Conscious Cairene

A true believer in the power of self-betterment, Zeinab is an ever-growing 21-year-old currently studying Management with Marketing at Royal Holloway University London. Her passion for sustainability, food, and all forms of creative expression is what keep her constantly on her feet, willing to learn about something new. She’s become an avid explorer always searching for ways to satisfy her curious mind.