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Harriet Shephard

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So many people talk about wanting to make the world a more welcoming and inclusive place for people with disabilities, but a select few are determined and passionate enough to actually do something about it. One example is Australian Paralympian and disability awareness advocate Jessica Smith. A successful public speaker and diversity consultant, she has also co-founded TOUCH Dubai, the inclusive talent agency. Now, after having three children and noticing the lack of disabled characters...

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A year ago, it was fairly easy to count all the padel courts in the UAE. These days, it’s virtually impossible to keep up with them all.    New ones are popping up across Abu Dhabi, Dubai and into the northern emirates at an incredible rate, including at hotels, sports centers and purpose-built new padel clubs.  A kind of cross between tennis and squash that is easier to play (and arguably more fun), many in the...

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This Saturday (March 5 2022), yoga fanatics are invited to gather at Bodytree Studio in Abu Dhabi for a full day of classes, workshops and live music.   Tickets cost Dh150 for the day, including unlimited classes and wellness experiences such as massages and Reiki taster sessions. Or, those who just want to browse the market can enter for free and explore stalls from Lululemon, Kata & Asana, Art Central, Kibsons, The Clean Touch, Modi Body,...

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It’s no secret that the UAE capital is home to a vast array of unique wildlife, but still, the fact that Abu Dhabi has the second largest dugong population in the world is nothing short of amazing.   Known as a ‘sea cow’ due to its love for foraging on seagrass beds, there are about 3,000 of these harmless sea mammals living in the emirate’s waters.  Dugongs are a huge part of the area’s maritime culture...

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For many of us, the idea of adding another social media platform to our already web-centric lives is very unappealing. But refreshingly, ASKWHO isn’t about gathering as many likes and followers as possible.  Founded in Dubai by expats Michael Askew and Matthew Gaziano and currently available around the world”, the group social media app encourages users to connect with others from their local area, share tips, exchange ideas and even meet up in person.   With...

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With countless picturesque green spaces, exercise tracks and outdoor gym equipment spread throughout every community, the UAE capital has long been a fabulous place for joggers, cyclists and fitness fanatics. And the emirate is ramping up its commitment to encouraging residents to take up active and healthy lifestyles and spend more time exercising out in the fresh air.  Last year saw the opening of Al Gurm Corniche, including a 3.5km cycling and running track and...

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Many of us start every new year vowing to do more exercise and live a healthier lifestyle and thanks to Active Parks, Abu Dhabi residents are off to a good head start.   Over the next four weeks, the new initiative is hosting an incredible 380 fitness classes across 12 of the emirate’s most picturesque and popular parks. And the best bit is that each session is absolutely free.  This means that you can work up a...

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Shop with a conscience this festive season and treat your loved ones to Christmas gifts that make it easier for them to care for their own health and wellbeing, as well as the world around them.  SQUATWOLF fitness apparel   Edgy, cool and almost too beautiful to work up a proper sweat in, SQUATWOLF’s outfits are so gorgeous they might even motivate your most gym-averse friends to get back into a fitness routine. Designed for...

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With amazing weather and gorgeous settings, Abu Dhabi is a sensational place for some outdoor yoga.   Feeling the sun on your back while you’re moving into a vinyasa just makes that rush of energy feel extra powerful, so why not give it a try while the temperatures are still perfect?  Here are six of the most incredible places to flow in the fresh air: Cove Beach Abu Dhabi   This sizzling beach club might be...

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Local students Hanna, Jess, Sandra, Tala, Tamanna and Reem surely never would have imagined that one day they would be modelling striking and incredibly imaginative outfits made from milk bottles, old nylon tights and other bits of ‘junk’ in front of the country’s most iconic landmarks.    The UAE is no stranger to head-turning and glamour. However, these garments are normally made from the most expensive materials that money can buy, not what most people consider...

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Sweat drips down my face, a thumping beat surges through my body and multi-colored strobe lights illuminate figures that are moving around me in the dark. No, this isn’t an illegal desert rave. This is CRANK, Abu Dhabi’s trendiest new boutique studio. Already a well-established institution in Dubai’s Al Serkal Avenue, the Abu Dhabi branch is located at the freshly revamped Sheikha Fatima Park in Khalidiyah. Of course, the UAE isn’t short of fancy fitness...