Meet Dalal Hamza, the bold, fierce weight trainer challenging female stereotypes across the Middle East.
Grazia got together with the 25-year-old athlete - who is currently working at NYUAD as a fitness and wellness specialist and is a part-time trainer at Alioth CrossFit in Dubai - over the Holy Month as she's keen to ensure fellow girls don’t put their fitness goals unnecessarily on hold for Ramadan.
So, how does wearing modest activewear impact your performance in the gym? “It doesn't!” Dalal insists. “Modest sportswear actually helps me perform to my best ability because it provides comfort whilst at the same time covering me.” And who does the best modest sportswear at the moment? “Nike have the best variety and they also have the hijab which is awesome. I also really like Lululemon, their designs are very comfortable,” she enthuses.
Now we've got the brands sorted, what about wearing specific items of sportswear? “I would say to avoid anything with a wide neck as your top will move around. Something hooded is good to keep comfortable and covered.” Dalal adds, “I will often wear a bodysuit as my undergarment and then put a turtleneck with the arms cut off over it to help it become breathable. The bodysuit helps cover me when lifting weights. You become very creative when trying to figure out how to do modest sportswear but make sure you cut down on layers!”
Finally, Dalal offers her best tip on how to wear the hijab in the most effective way during exercise: “To stop the hijab falling off I usually secure it with a small hairband underneath. Otherwise, it’s pretty simple - just put it on!”
Dalal is working with Noon to champion women of the region. To shop her look see Noon.com
Photos: Noon and Getty Images