Personalized fitness

For those looking at fitness on a limited budget, the word ‘personal trainer’ may strike a negative chord. Although the fitness regimen beginner will admit that he or she may need an appointment and a motivator to get through the first month of working out, the more rational side of the brain will always believe that this is extravagant, and a workout can be done anywhere–a walk through the streets, a jog on the track, crunches on your living room carpet. And it’s really up to you–and the amount of money you are able to put aside to keep yourself in good shape.

The latest trend in fitness in Cairo is not only about personal trainers: its about a totally personalized look at fitness. At a number of ‘Fitness Studios’ in Cairo, personal attention is exactly what you are going to get. "We want our clients to have a holistic lifestyle change when it comes to fitness," explains Rana Arafa, partner and marketing coordinator at Body Vibe, a fitness studio that opened recently in Maadi’s Degla district, "so we focus on personal attention in order to understand our clients’ likes and dislikes to make a fitter, healthier lifestyle more appealing to them." Body Vibe is just one of a few fitness studios that have cropped up around the city. Smaller but adequately equipped, these studios are not accessible to clients in the same way as gyms–you only come in to the studio for your previously scheduled session. At Body Vibe you can come by a little early to check your mail or grab a juice from the juice/snack bar before your workout–and for a more enjoyable experience, you are welcome to put a movie or show on a flash drive and come in to watch it on their flat screen while you slave away at the elliptical machine. Sounds expensive? Well, some of the studios are.

The prices for a personal training session range from approximately LE100-300 depending on the studio and the number of sessions you. Body By Design is another studio in Maadi that follows a similar structure. "Clients who are on a package that offers three sessions per week are given the option to use cardio equipment in their own time," explains Anna Louise, owner of Body By Design. "We give them a program to supplement their sessions with the trainer." The personal training structure can be used in a number of ways–as a supplement to a workout at another gym, as a kick-start to a return to a fitter way of life, or as a permanent structure to your workout routine.

At Body By Design, Arafa and the team have created packages, including one specifically for youth (aged 5-16), and one for clients with special needs. They also have specific programs for pregnant women and for post-pregnancy recovery, and offer a two-hour period, three times a week for women who prefer to work out in a female-only environment. "We’re a group of Egyptians who have come up with our own brand and have given it its own, Egyptian identity," explains Arafa. "This is not a franchise from abroad." And her personalized outlook for the studio matches her personalized plans for clients as well. Despite the limited size of the studios, their client lists are extensive–from football players to movie stars and the fitness conscious to the fitness newcomer, personal training fitness studios are an up-and-coming trend in Egypt’s fast-growing health (or image) conscious community. Be sure to catch Body Vibe’s grand opening later this month.

Body Vibe Villa 18, Road 214 Degla Tel: 017 849 9977 Body By Design Tel: 0101500902