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Fitness yoga

Underwater Yoga with Lululemon

Piloga X Lululemon

There are plenty of places out here to practice yoga that will blow your mind, from skyscraper rooftops to desert haven’s and even on a boat out at sea, but this one just set a new bar. Not satisfied with having a cool studio to do yoga in, Piloga instructor Allie McLaughlin brought her strong vinyasa flow to a new level, underwater to be exact. Supported by the amazing team at Lululemon, the session was hosted last Saturday morning in The Dubai Mall‘s famous Aquarium tunnel.

So practicing Savasana surrounded by sharks has got to be one of my all time favourite ways to meditate, although it’s pretty hard to keep your eyes closed the entire time and you can forget about focus… all the while, filtered through a beautiful blue light, you gain a sense of clarity and energy that just isn’t there in a white four walled room.

If it’s something that appeals to you too, they have plenty more sessions coming up… book here!
Piloga X Lululemon at The Dubai Mall

Piloga X Lululemon at The Dubai Mall

Piloga X Lululemon at The Dubai Mall

travel yoga

Life Well Travelled in Oman

OMAN

I’m all for a weekend away, but they aren’t always as glam as Instagram makes out. More often than not, they are choc full of busy days and business dinners, so every now and then I like to take a little time out. Not just from work, but from my phone too. It’s important in this day and age to learn to switch off. There’s a new online portal H Retreats that will help take care of your digital detox too… I love Oman as a place of constant peace and tranquility, it is my go-to getaway that’s also super easy to get to!

Here’s where i’m thinking to retreat to this year:

Al Baleed Resort
Beachside
They work with global certified healers, guides, therapists, health and fitness experts to create bespoke programmes to comfort, strengthen and support you along your retreat. This beautiful adventure is set aside the Indian Ocean on the south coast of Oman at Al Baleed Resort in Salalah, surrounded by mountains and the sea. A great place to unwind, recharge, discover and de-stress. Whilst enjoying the perks of a luxury five-star hotel too.
When: Wednesday 22nd March – Monday 29th March 2017
What you get:
Full board – breakfast, lunch and dinner
Airport transfers
8 yoga classes
Up to 6 one-to-one holistic treatments with world renowned healers and therapists
4 therapy workshops
2 luxurious spa massages
1 group Tibetan singing bowls session
1 nutrition workshop

alila jabal akhdar
Mountain High
An idyllic retreat, perched 2,000 metres above sea level on the curving rim of a great canyon in the Sultanate of Oman’s vast Saiq Plateau, Anantara Al Jabal Al Akhdar is everything Instagram says it is. Hike through valleys bursting with date palms and orchards of pomegranate, practice sun salutations atop a mountain, try abseiling, mountain climbing, archery or mountain biking!
When: Wednesday 7th June – Monday 12th June 2017
What you get:
Full board – breakfast, lunch and dinner
Airport transfers
8 yoga classes
Up to 6 one-to-one treatments with world renowned healers and therapists
Up to 4 therapy workshops
2 luxurious spa massages
1 Qigong workshop
1 group gong meditation/sound therapy session
1 nutrition workshop

travel yoga

Retreat To These 3 Worlds of Wellness

Anantara

Chenot Palace Health & Wellness Hotel, Gabala Azerbaijan
Opening on the 1st November, the Chenot Palace is introducing a completely new wellness landscape to us in the heart of Azerbaijan. Not immediately recognised as a luscious and bountiful green wonderland, this new retreat bring us the Chenot Method. For those of you that aren’t familiar with this concept – “the Chenot Method is a unique combination of treatments and diet that in synergy aim to protect effectively the body from damage and toxins accumulation and premature aging.” …interest peaked.Chenot Palace“The protocols of these treatments are collectively known as the Chenot Method and combine the principles of Chinese medicine with the latest scientific advances in medicine and state of the art diagnostic technology.”

They are boasting a highly professional team of doctors, dieticians and therapists who will be able to reveal the lifelines and energy flows through our bodies, aiding in the elimination of blockages and restrictions within them. The Chenot’s treatments are said to help balance our emotions too! (I can think of at least four people who need this right now including me)… Sign me up.

Anantara Kihavah, Maldives Villas
Anantara
So I’ve ticked diving with sharks off my list but swimming with up to 100 manta rays in the Indian Ocean sounds like a fairy tale! And what’s even better, I don’t need to get my license in order to do so. Free diving with these gorgeous creatures is truly an amazing opportunity and as this year’s manta ray season ends in November, I suggest you book Anantara Kihavah Maldives Villas quick. It all happens at the protected site of Hanifaru Bay, only 45 minutes away from the resort and is the world’s largest natural manta feeding destination. Don’t worry though, it’s not island style free diving – they have a PADI – accredited, newly launched free diving centre to help guide you.

The resort itself is located in Baa Atoll, a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. So expect more than just these magical sightings when you’re there! I’ll be booking before the water gets too cold…

Banyan Tree, Phuket
Banyan Tree
Thailand has it’s own unique vibes and anyone whose ever visited this part of Asia will understand the pull to return time and time again. Most of my excursions here have either been up north or to one of the beautiful surrounding islands so this Phuket retreat sounds downright heavenly! Not one to sit still, there’s plenty of adventure to be had here too. Picture an awe-inspiring resort encased by swaying palm trees and turquoise waters. Sensational villas each with private pools, a world-renowned spa and dinners that will take your breath away!
Banyan Tree
If you’re a bit more of a culture vulture, head to Old town and spot the Portuguese influences amongst the villas, boutiques and streets. The Buddhist temples too are exquisite, Wat Chalong is one not to be missed, but try to avoid buying any Buddha relics or souvenirs as it’s not looked at favourably with the locals.

fashion Fitness travel yoga

Fashionably Honouring the International Day of Yoga

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As a yogi, I LOVE that today is the International day of Yoga and that people across the globe are sharing pics of their favourite poses, stretches, hotspots and meditation sanctuaries, be it local, international or even a memory of a gap – year retreat! I have some very fond memories of a yoga retreat in Sri Lanka and am incredibly jealous of Kim and the yogalates troop out in Bali right now!

With all the yoga love today, I wanted to highlight my 5 favourite local shopping hotspots for all the colourful, practical and oh-so-comfy yoga gear I wear!
1st up, is the work-to-workout wear that my lovely friend Priya Bhatia has brought us with Hautletic! Everything she stocks is stylish, mature, and even elegant enough to wear out! I’ve worn my pieces everywhere from the frozen lakes of Sweden to the sweltering summers here in Dubai.Hautletic
Next up are these colourful prints that the lovely Hannah Swales’s The Hot Box Kit features– glorious patterns, patterns, patterns! Every wild child print you can imagine with their vast array of Teeki’s and other super soft leggings. The Hot Box Kit
The new addition to my wardrobe – Fit Plum! Their seriously sexy designs and micro tops are making waves on instagram, and they fit like a glove!
Fit Plum
I’ve been kitted out in Reebok’s for a while now and their latest studio collection is no disappointment. Check out these lovely pineapple printed pieces! Reebok
And last but definitely not least, I was turned on to yApparel through their VitaCOCO connection and these leggings give me a dose of instant happiness. You can’t not smile when wearing them! :) yApparel & VitaCoco
Fitness yoga

The 6 Week FlyBarre Challenge

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Yoga has always been my favourite way to keep fit, whilst helping me to maintain normal stress levels in this busy city, it also has little ways of toning your body. I’ve been an avid yogalates fan in particular, from daring balances to core exercises, there’s always something to sweat about.

And then there was FlyBarre

FlyBarre

Opening in the Gold & Diamond Park, it was a stones throw from work, so I popped in to check it out. One class led to another and very soon was buying packages. Hooked on the sweaty muscle exhausting sessions, it quickly became my favourite after-work haunt. Especially due to their instructors – they have to be some of THE nicest, most encouraging fitness professionals i’ve come across.

FlyBarre

FlyBarre provides a revolutionary form of body sculpting. It’s a complete mixture of exercises, taking elements from yoga to dance, pilates and of course ballet. I’ve never been a Zumba fan (i’m particularly un-coordinated when it comes to following choreographed anything), so I was worried at the beginning about the one dynamic arms track in the hour-long loop.

FlyBarre

I was offered the opportunity to join the FlyBarre Challenge at the beginning of May – a 6 week course, where you have to complete 4 classes a week, including 3 workshops. I jumped at the chance and with Reebok kindly offering to keep me cool in their latest studio and crossfit gear, I was all set.

It’s the final week now and i’m HONESTLY signing up again next month. It’s been a great way of ensuring I get regular exercise, (I hate the gym) and also it’s kept me off the couch in the evenings! I’ve even been trying out the protein shakes, and made it to the odd early class or two. I would recommend it to anyone who’s looking for a social and dynamic way of toning, losing a couple of inches and building strength.

FlyBarre

Hotspot yoga

*Healthy Hotspot* Life’N’One

Nestled in the backstreets of Jumeirah 1, hidden behind institutions like Magrudy’s and Spinneys, a graffiti wall hides a new hotspot that transports you across the sea to the breakfast bars of Sri Lanka or Goa.  A villa that is one part cafe, one part yoga studio and one part pop-up shop.

Life'N'One Dubai

If you haven’t heard of or visited Life’N’One yet, I urge you to head down there before the weather makes sitting outside on their luscious green grass, around a gorgeous long reclaimed wood table a tad too unbearable.

Life'N'One Dubai

It’s simple, yet oh-so-detailed, everything from the food (a vegetarian’s heaven), and the freshly squeezed power juices… to the straw seating and ceiling recipe’s in the kitchen!

Life'N'One Dubai

It has all the charm of an exotic back garden at yoga retreat in Bali, and mix in Dubai’s favourite wellness trends like barre, yoga and reformer pilates, you’ve got a hotspot that literally has everything (including a massage centre) you need for a morning of pure bliss!Life'N'One Dubai

 

yoga

Vita Yoga at the Cove

There’s two things I LOVE… coconut water and outdoor yoga. So naturally when Vita Coco got in touch to see if I wanted to join their early Friday morning classes, I jumped at it! They had set up rows of Vita Coco yoga mats down at Dubai’s newest beach hotspot, Cove Beach, overlooking the gorgeous views of the Burj.

Yoga at the Cove

Sporting my bright new Vita Coco yoga leggings (how cool are they!?) from famed Aussie brand Dharma Bums, (found at Dubai yoga-store Yapparel) and a brand new pair of Havianas, I had all I needed for a morning on the beach :)

Yoga at the Cove

Taught by yoga superstar Abbey Bates (who’s a complete instagram celeb by the way), these Hatha flow classes are now my favourite way to wake up on the weekend!

Yoga at the Cove

Followed by a delicious breakfast on their wooden terrace, my Friday mornings for the last month have been completely #PoweredByCoconuts!

Yoga at the Cove