Dubai - The teams began their pre-game warm-ups at 7am and went out to compete and complete the competition by 1pm.
As the Dubai Fitness Challenge (DFC) enters its second week, fitness fever gripped the employees of Galadari Brothers who came out in huge numbers on Friday morning to participate in the Galadari Football Championship.
Around 500 staff members from 12 Galadari Brothers companies dedicated their weekend morning to fun, fitness and football as part of the Dubai Fitness Challenge.
Leading the teams from the front was the Group CEO of Galadari Brothers, Yahya Kazi, who said: "I am thrilled to see the energetic, motivated and happy faces of our employees who are participating in the Dubai Fitness Challenge with such enthusiasm. This culture of engaging in fitness activities as a team without any barriers of age, nationality, designation enhances supervisor-subordinate relationships, brings teams together and creates a happy work culture. Following the call of Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Executive Council, to participate in the fitness challenge, we at Galadari Brothers, pledge to be 'In It Together' and play our part in making Dubai the most active and happy city of the world."
Wearing colourful jersies with #Galadari and DXB Challenge 30X30 embossed on them, 16 teams played against each other in 20-minute friendly matches. Out of the lot, two teams managed to reach the finals that will be conducted in the last week of the DFC.
To pump up the players and the audience, some foot-tapping Bollywood songs were played in the backdrop of the football matches that added element of fun for some and a physical edge for others during the competition.
Manoj Kumar, Galadari Brothers chief human resources officer, said: "Apart from the players, we also had a very enthusiastic audience that mostly comprised of our blue-collar workers who came from their labour accommodations to cheer for their colleagues. After the football matches, we have light exercises to engage them also in the fitness challenge and we encourage all the participants to switch on their Dubai Fitness app while taking part in fitness activities."
The teams began their pre-game warm-ups at 7am and went out to compete and complete the competition by 1pm. They were offered breakfast and lunch packs before and after the sessions.
An enthusiastic participant, FA, 55, said this was the first time in 30 years or so that he got a chance to play soccer. "I used to be an athlete and active sports enthusiast at school and even college level. But later on I never got a chance to play as I got busy with family responsibilities. However, I am grateful to our company for giving us a chance to revisit our childhood, to feel happy and to bond with our team members so beautifully. I felt like a kid today as I manoeuvered the ball across the soccer field and played my heart out without any stress or worry."
A number of fitness activities, including Zumba, yoga, tug of war, buddy workouts, HIIT, pushup and plank challenges among others have been planned daily until November 16 (the last day of DFC 2019) for Galadari Brothers employees within their office premises. For next week, the group is organising a cricket tournament for its employees.