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Zamalek, Cairo, Egypt.
Nun Center: Soothing Alternative Therapy in Zamalek
If you're experiencing emotional, mental or physical stress and would like an alternative form of therapy to deal with it, the recently opened Nūn Center has come to the rescue. The centre offers various activities such as yoga classes and contemporary dance classes, in addition to treatments such as acupuncture, Reiki, reflexology, kinesiology, homeopathy and nutritional therapy, to name a few.
The centre is located in a villa in the closed down part of Shafik Mansour Street near Hassan Sabry Street. Go past the Dutch embassy and take a left before the shopping mall. Upon entering the street, you will notice the bright green and red logo of Nūn on the gate. Enter through the garden from here and take the stairs to the first floor.
The reception is also a little shop where you can buy organic products. Most products are by the brand Bob’s Red Mill. You can get various kinds of cereal such as apple-blueberry granola or eight-grain hot cereal starting at 50LE. You can also buy organic brownie mix (79LE) or natural sea salt (30LE).
At the time of our visit, we tried the Chi Nei Tsang treatment (200LE), which can be translated into ‘internal organs chi transformation’. The treatment is used to detoxify and energize the internal organs through soft and deep manipulation of the abdomen. Chi Nei Tsang is holistic in its healing approach; it also addresses the patient on an emotional level.
According to Chinese philosophy, emotions are stored in the abdomen, and unprocessed emotional energy accrues in the body. These blockages lead to tension, problems with internal organs and illness. Chi Nei Tsang helps to release and process these emotions through physical manipulation, visualization and meditation. Our practitioner Hana was very nice and welcoming. When you enter the treatment room, you are handed yoga pants to wear. For this treatment, it’s only necessary to wear these and to roll up your shirt.
The massage starts at the right side of your body, then to the left side and ends in the middle. At the beginning of the massage, oil is rubbed onto your belly. Throughout the massage, Hana presses the points of the intestates such as the colon, liver, gallbladder, stomach and so on. Each point is held for 30 seconds. Depending on the state of your organs and/or emotions, the treatment can be painful at times. However, the pain disappears relatively fast. In case you have severe pain or issues with certain body parts, Hana can provide you with homeopathic cures.
When the massage shifts from your right side to your left side, you will feel the difference for yourself. Your right side is soft and relaxed while the left side still feels stiff. The massage takes about an hour. Afterwards you are presented with tea, which you can have in the nice waiting room. Before the treatment you are advised not to eat or drink for at least an hour.
Nūn Center is a great and essential addition to Zamalek. Even if none of the treatments appeal to you, you must absolutely visit for a yoga class or to get your hands on organic food.The majority of treatments such as Chi Nei Tsang. Homeopathy and Dorn Method Therapy are between 200LE and 300LE. Yoga sessions are 100LE in you drop in or 900LE per month with unlimited use.
In a city where, according to statistics, 80% of women have been subjected to harassment, it isn't the worst idea to take up self-defence classes. After all, it never hurts to be able to defend yourself from a possible attacker. Nūn Center in Zamalek understands the need for self-defence techniques and has started to offer these classes twice a week.
Each class is two hours long and is taught by Ahmed Kadry, who is trained in a variety of martial arts including traditional Japanese Jiu Jitsu and mixed martial arts. These sessions teach self-defence techniques that have been adapted to use in real life situations. Classes are open to everyone no matter what your fitness level or martial arts experience is. As well as picking up self-defence tactics, the class also makes for good excercise.
The two hours begin with a warm up of your all muscles to get prepared; special focus is placed on the wrists since they are used more excessively than usual. Apart from that you will also work on your balance. The next stage after the warm up consists of learning defence moves that apply to different situations. The first one shows you how to block attacks and escape efficiently and you are also shown techniques on how to free yourself should someone actually succeed in grabbing you. It was surprising to find out that with some techniques you can bring your opponent to the floor using just one finger!
The next segment of the class consists of practicing these newly learnt techniques with your fellow classmates and Ahmed himself. During practice, Ahmed continuously walks around to correct your moves and help you improve.
The best thing about this self-defence class is that you immediately learn helpful techniques which, if necessary, you could use immediately. During the class there are no breaks, it is a two-hour full-on workout. There are classes on Monday starting at 8PM to 10PM and on Saturday from 4PM to 6PM. You should wear a loose t-shirt as sometimes it’s necessary to grab each other in order to practice the moves. The classes are 100LE and you'll need to register beforehand by calling Nūn Center.
Ahmed is a very good instructor and is patient with teaching all the moves. All
in all, kudos to the Nūn Center
and Ahmed for offering these practical and genuinely useful classes.