UAE community helps residents get fit for free
The local initiative guides virtual audiences through everything from Pilates to circuit training
Community service comes in all shapes and forms. But at the heart of it all, it involves giving back.
Local initiative Daman Heroes has been offering online fitness sessions for free, thanks to community members who are taking the time out to guide virtual audiences through a variety of exercise routines, from Pilates to Zumba and circuit training to yoga. And each of them are inspiring in their own way.
South African Clari Lehmkuhl is the only certified Zumba instructor in the Middle East with Down syndrome - and she loves leading families around the UAE into dance routines around their living rooms. "Zumba has changed my life," she says. "It keeps me fit, busy, happy and connects me with other Zumba communities around the world."
Chris Taylor holds a high-powered job as CEO of Abu Dhabi Finance, but he also enjoys teaching intermediate circuit sessions online.
"I used to get asked questions a lot in the workplace, asking about my work-life balance and how I stay in good shape," he says. "It's a pleasure to combine my passion for sport with the chance to give back to the community, one that has been very welcoming to me since I moved to the UAE in 2007. It's also very fulfilling to help people with their fitness goals, setting targets outside of the work environment."
The main aim of the initiative, which features videos on the Daman Heroes YouTube channel that are 15 to 20 minutes long, is to get more people moving - a goal that lines right up with the ongoing Dubai Fitness Challenge.
"Physical activity is proven to boost health and mental well-being and we are dedicated to supporting community initiatives that help the nation get active. This is extremely important given the challenges many members of the community face during the Covid-19 pandemic," explains Hamad Al Mehyas, CEO of the National Health Insurance Company - Daman. "The volunteers are an inspiration to the UAE and we welcome members of the public to join the movement."