This Yogipreneur has been making waves in the Dubai wellness scene with his perseverance and passion and we talk to him to find out more…
Please tell us about your journey to become a ‘yogipreneur’.
After achieving two MBAs and with a successful career of ten years in the corporate world, I took a leap of faith after a cardiovascular accident that almost took my life. This incident put an end to my blooming yet stressful corporate career but I believe it to be the answer to what has always been my true calling – to dedicate myself to others’ personal development and well-being. I lost the tie, hung up the suit, rolled out the mat, and never looked back. Now I manage my time between teaching and developing partnerships with innovative entities like Dubai Active to create events and concepts that will make an impact on people’s lives and encourages them to move their bodies and make positive, healthy changes. I also advise governmental entities and the private sector with my company Integrated Wellbeing(s) to make an impact where wellness activities are needed in the corporate world.
You are on a mission to inspire ‘conscious changes’. What is that?
After my yoga certifications, I had the opportunity to train with modern-day gurus such as Ira Om, Sean Phelps, Jacob Manning, Jonah Kest and Eddie Stern. I was one of the first certified Animal Flow and Self-defense instructors in Dubai and I trained directly with Mike Fitch, Val Riazanov, Martin Wheeler and many other international inspiring experts, learning and growing from their experiences. As an expert in anatomy, I like to explore the multidimensional aspects of body biomechanics and metabolism to better understand, develop, and share methods and practices that empower the human body, mind, and soul. By specializing in yoga alignment, breath and mechanisms of movement, I have created and conceptualized two innovative yoga styles that have become my signature classes, WARRIOR FLOW & ACTIVE STRETCH & MOBILITY. This is my way to inspire people through the practice of both stretching and vinyasa. It is my modest contribution.
How does one do it?
I believe that we move in three phases in our life journey. We start with ignorance at an early age and then as we grow and explore life we move to the knowledge stage where we fill our heads with information and skills. Then at some point, we start digesting this knowledge and move towards consciousness. I believe this is where we begin to understand the information we’ve taken in and start using it to find our purpose and balance our life. Many practices or reading will help one to start the process of conscious change. I recently published my first book called GURÜ, which explores topics such as Loss & Grief, Purpose, Fears and other issues that we have to deal with on a daily basis. This can be a start.
How do we stay constant and positive in a transient society like UAE?
Consistency is key to practice every day. It has to do with setting up your mindset and finding balance between your physical needs and your mental health. You can’t force your body and mind to practice frenetic activity, especially when it is as challenging as Yoga, but you can create a favourable context to avoid failure of showing up on your mat and creating a routine. Plus many initiatives like Active on the Beach and wellness festivals in the UAE are a great motivation to connect with the community and find inspiration with like-minded yogis.
Can you tell us more about biohealth and how does it help us?
It’s all about focusing on what’s natural and what is organic to maintain your health. Knowing your body is the path. Testing what works for you and including this in your daily routine such as putting lemon in your water to empower the alkalinity of your water input, using roots like ginger and turmeric in your diet, and of course avoiding sugar and processed food to reduce the negative impact on your body. Having a biohealth routine helps me to have more energy for my daily activities and reduces the level of oxidative stress in my body.
How do you define wellness? How do you make it a priority?
Beyond wellness, I like to speak about well-being which includes physical fitness activities, emotional wellness and mental healing practices like meditation and breathing exercises. If we don’t make well-being or wellness a priority, sooner or later we will be forced to make time for our illness. Wellness is like risk management, it is a preventative act that keeps our bodies away from issues and sickness and it reduces the negative impact of deceases.
What advice do you have for anyone that is trying to incorporate more yoga into their lives?
Just do it. Go to a Yoga studio, start practising and trust the process. Don’t wait to be ready to start Yoga. You know what… YOU ARE READY! The only way is the way through. The only method is the practice. The only reward is your happiness and health.
What should our readers know about your work/mission?
They should know that I have been where they are now – over stressed, feeling low or depressed, experiencing anxiety or maybe just feeling that they want to improve some things in their lives, to find a purpose, to grow, to feel in control… to stop feeling unwell.
I want people to know that many people in the world have been in their position too and they are here to help, to support and guide. I am here to share my experiences and help people find simple and effective practices to help them reach their goals and feel better. Come talk to me, I will listen.
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