Yoga is set to make inroads into the Kingdom’s universities due to its significance for mental and physical health. Several agreements will be signed with major universities in Saudi Arabia to support and promote yoga over the next few months, according to Saudi Yoga Committee President Nouf Al-Marwaai.
Its president says that introducing yoga to the Kingdom’s universities has been a top priority for the Saudi Yoga Committee. She said that the committee aims to discover and groom practitioners of the activity, which has grown in popularity.
A recent forum session held in Riyadh by the Saudi Universities Sports Federation under the umbrella of the Ministry of Education saw Al-Marwaai announce that many agreements will be signed with universities to bolster yoga practice on their campuses over the next few months.
She also mentioned that the committee aims to discover distinguished players in all types of yoga, and yogasana sports, in addition to fostering their skills so they can represent the country in local and international tournaments.
As a result of the growing interest in yoga, the country’s first yoga championship took place last year. The first training camp and championship were hosted by the University of Business and Technology in Jeddah. The event drew participants from 11 Arab countries, including UAE, Oman, Yemen, Palestine, Egypt, Libya, Alegria, Morocco, and Tunisia.
Al-Marwaai, who is also the founder of the Arab Yoga Foundation, cited the fact that the practice of yoga has become one of the most popular activities in Saudi schools and universities, especially with young people, and that it has helped them to develop their physical flexibility and balance. She stressed that it should be made a sustainable activity in the universities for staff and students, adding that the practice of yoga helps them overcome stress and provides mental and physical health benefits.
“Yoga includes a variety of crucial aspects, from Asana posture practices to Pranayamas breathing techniques, Bandhas muscle control, Dhayan, and Yoga Nidra meditation and relaxation,” she explained. She urged that yoga be made one of the most sustainable university activities, whether practicing yoga for health and wellness, Hatha yoga and its traditional styles, or yogasana sports.
The first yoga referee course in the Kingdom, hosted by the Asian Yogasana Sports Federation in India, qualified with the first Saudi batch of referees. The course was also attended by the heads of various universities in the Kingdom and aimed to train and certify the new generation of yoga referees.
The forum session came within the framework of an integrated system of programs and initiatives of the committee under the title “Yoga for University Students of Both Genders.” It was held in the headquarters of the SUSF-SUSF in the Ministry of Education in Riyadh. SPA reports that it was organized in collaboration with the Saudi Yoga Committee to spread awareness and motivate people to adopt yoga as a lifestyle.