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The path from mechanical engineer to kitesurfing instructor is not a particularly well-trodden one. But in 2014, Amer El Dandachli set off down that road and it ended, as most do, at the ocean. Lebanese-born El Dandachli quit his 9-5 life and eventually set up Kite N Surf Dubai in 2016. Now, his days are spent on the waves.  Kite N Surf operates across the UAE, teaching kitesurfing at Kite Beach (of course) and at...

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Embarking on a 120-kilometer journey across the desert and on foot, too, may not sound appealing to everyone, but the fifth annual Women’s Heritage Walk has become not only a culturally significant event but a once-in-a-lifetime adventure. As with the others that came before it, the fifth annual event commemorates the annual Bedouin journey from Abu Dhabi to Al Ain in search of cooler weather, taking days to get to their destination. On Friday (January...

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If you are one of the 30,000 runners expected to line up for the start of the Standard Chartered Dubai Marathon at 7am on Friday, January 24,and are perhaps now wondering whether all that training and the anticipated agony of the 42.195-kilometer slog that lies ahead of you is really going to be worth it, relax. Right now, the decision to enter Dubai’s 20th anniversary marathon – perhaps taken in the heat of the moment after...

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Running is not everyone’s forte, that’s for sure. But for many people, running can be of great benefit in many areas of life, from building physical health to reducing stress. So if you’ve thought about taking it up  but haven’t quite got round to it yet, here’s why you should start running: Mental fitness Those who have made it past putting on their running gear will understand the mental gains that come from even one...

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Glastonbury Festival, 2011. It is 4am and in a muddy tent the dancefloor is heaving as revellers in Wellington boots slide around to an eclectic mix of power ballads and dance music. Everyone is smiling, but no-one is making a sound. This is my first taste of a silent disco.  Fast forward eight years and my second bite of the cherry (technically the fourth as every night at Glastonbury ended at the silent disco tent)...

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As January is a great month to start a new health and fitness regime, or to ramp up  whatever you’ve got going now, signing up to compete in a race or run can prove a valuable motivator. So here is a list of some of the best UAE races for the year ahead to keep you motivated. Al Wathba Cycle Race 2020 — Abu Dhabi  Both casual and hardcore riders alike can participate in the...

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The UAE has seen exponential growth in the health and fitness industry over the last few years and it shows no sign of slowing down. We asked a woman who is always ahead of the curve – personal trainer, nutrition coach and fitness journalist, Devinder Bains – to talk us through the big health and fitness trends for 2020: all the new classes, gadgets and foods that we’ll be loving as we enter the new...

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It would be simple to just say, “Come and ride my spin class, it’s high intensity, low impact, loads of fun and we’ll be done in 45 minutes.” That may all be true, but it doesn’t quite do it justice and would tell you very little about why you should go and ride a bike indoors. Probably the best thing about spinning is that you are in control. For 45 minutes, that is your bike...

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Sophie Malpass started Super SUP Fit, which provides bespoke and boutique HIIT, pilates and yoga-inspired workouts on the water in Dubai, after working on a cruise ship as a professional dancer.  Five years later, the aim of this British Dubai resident’s SUP classes is to create a fun atmosphere involving effective workouts with balls and bands and a good chance of a nice cool dip. Partnerships with Drift Beach, One&Only Royal Mirage and Fairmont, The Palm...

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Kelsey Wells has more than 2.5 million followers on Instagram, many of them drawn to the new mom’s incredible home workouts — PWR At Home — and constant stream of positive messaging. Although she’s as fit and slender as a celebrity trainer can be, Wells first went viral around a campaign encouraging women to ‘screw the scales’. Now she’s bringing that health-not-aesthetics focus to Dubai Active for the first time, where she will host her...

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The medals have been designed and the race course set for the second ADNOC Abu Dhabi Marathon. There’s the full marathon, of course, and a roster of runners from elites on down to first-timers. Then there are 10km, 5km and 2.5km races for everyone else, and when they finish, their medals will read “I did it”. Marathoners get the slightly hipper 42.195km on theirs, but then again, they earned that, didn’t they?   In the leadup...