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Tru3 Yoga

KUWAIT - Tourism

Sanaa A. Jaman

Founder & CEO, Tru3 Yoga, Kuwait

Bio

Born and raised in Kuwait, Dr. Sanaa Jaman, founder of Tru3 Yoga, holds a PhD in environmental engineering sciences and an executive master’s in business administration (EMBA). With her discovery of the therapeutic and healing virtue in the art of yoga, Dr. Jaman began a personal healing journey and continues to deepen her knowledge of yoga and its philosophy by hosting international retreats and training programs that help thousands around the globe. She has over eight years of teaching experience and is currently in a yoga therapy program (IYAT). Her mission is to help many overcome self-doubt, self-criticism, anxiety, depression, and trauma while learning to be their best selves on and off the mat.

"My vision encompasses establishing branches in each of the GCC countries while fostering a robust community of Arabic-speaking yoga teachers."
TBY talks to Sanaa A. Jaman, Founder & CEO of Tru3 Yoga, Kuwait, about the idea of starting the studio, the benefits of yoga, and goals for the short term.
How has practicing yoga helped changed your life?

My yoga journey began in 2013 as at-home practice and, in time, transformed into something much deeper. As I moved my body in physical postures, I started to develop a deeper understanding of not only myself but the world around me. Over the course of my life, I went through deep depression, and yoga played a crucial role in addressing previous traumas, acknowledging my emotions, and ultimately healing to improve my mental health and well-being. Yoga reshaped my perspective and helped me view life through a different lens. In my yoga journey, I learned the philosophy of shifting one’s perspective, which helped me accept life challenges. Yoga has taught that life is in a constant state of flow, just like the breath. Holding on to an inhale or exhale for too long can lead to toxicity. Similarly, holding onto experiences can be detrimental and prevents the natural flow of life.

How did the idea of establishing a yoga studio in Kuwait come about, and what challenges did you face in the beginning?

Upon graduating with my doctorate in environmental engineering and returning to Kuwait in 2017, I taught part time at local yoga studios, and I noticed an overall lack of the community in those spaces. As a teacher, I did not know my students or colleagues very well. The environment felt like a gym, and everything felt transactional. Being away from Kuwait for so long, my social circle had gotten smaller, and I found it difficult to meet new people. I wanted to create a space and a community where people can meet people and feel welcomed. The idea for establishing a yoga studio came through lunch with a friend who suggested I open a yoga studio. She introduced me to an interior designer who informed me the government offers loans for such initiatives. I was connected to a business consulting agency through a series of referrals, who assured me of their ability to assemble the required documentation for the loan. The entire process took two years, involving interactions with the government, submission of the necessary paperwork, and the acquisition of licenses. I also searched for an appropriate location that aligned with the vision I had for the studio.

How do you help people understand what yoga is as a whole?

Yoga is about connecting the mind, body and soul. People know yoga from a physical practice not realizing that it is much more than that. There is a common misconception that practicing yoga means having everything perfectly aligned—being flexible and inherently calm; however, the truth is yoga is about connecting deeper with yourself and society around you. Yoga teaches you how to have compassion and grace for yourself and others. It teaches you how to be honest and have integrity. It also teaches you how to live a life of contentment, non-attachment and surrender.

In addition to courses for yoga instructors and meditation, what other courses do you provide?

We offer a 200-hour yoga teacher training program, which serves as the foundational background of yoga philosophy and yoga postures. From there, students are offered continuing education courses like pranayama and meditation yoga teacher training. This training is aimed for those who are seeking to go deeper in learning the techniques and become meditation teachers. Our yoga studio also offers advanced yoga teacher training, which caters to teachers who want to advance their yoga practice and learn the safe instructions of these advanced poses.
Additionally, we have professional development training programs that help teachers learn the foundations of starting a business in yoga and how to expand beyond teaching yoga group classes. The structure of Tru3 Yoga school has three distinct tiers. The first is targeted for students interested in group classes, engaging with both the physical practice and nurturing their mental and emotional well-being. The second tier comes when the student aspires to deepen their knowledge by enrolling in 200 hour yoga teacher training. This category includes students who wish to improve their personal practice or deepen their teaching skills to become certified yoga teacher. Finally, the third tier is for those who are certified teachers and wish to progress further by assuming the role of trainers. If a student is truly passionate about yoga and determined to pursue it further, we guide them every step of the way up to the role of a trainer. Our approach involves imparting knowledge and skills. A significant number of graduates, upon completing their training, opt to spend the following teacher training observing and assisting current trainers . This experience allows them to grasp the intricacies of leading a training in the future. They seek guidance on how to achieve this goal and look to us for insights, and we offer professional development to support them. Upon graduating, individuals remain an integral part of our extended family. Our connection continues beyond graduation, as graduates are always welcome to approach us for guidance or assistance. We are committed to being a constant presence in their journey, whether or not they remain directly connected with our school. Once a student steps into our classes, they become part of the family.

What are your goals for the future?

My vision encompasses establishing branches in each of the GCC countries while fostering a robust community of Arabic-speaking yoga teachers. Currently, yoga is predominantly taught in English, even here in Kuwait. My aim is to gradually introduce Arabic instruction, thereby expanding accessibility to a broader audience. While I do not envision a multitude of branches in Kuwait, my focus extends toward evolving into a yoga therapy school, offering a holistic therapeutic approach. This approach caters to individuals who might not find conventional clinical therapy suitable—I personally fall into this category. Having experimented with both, I discovered that yoga therapy resonates more profoundly with my needs. In the upcoming decade, my aspiration involves opening multiple branches and ultimately transforming our school into a yoga therapy school. However, I am most excited about creating a comprehensive curriculum and lesson plans that are found within our manual. My intention is to package and offer these resources as a curriculum for sale to other yoga schools. This passion stems from a significant gap I have identified in the industry. Over the past three years, I have dedicated substantial effort to developing our manual, driven by the goal of providing an invaluable educational tool to other yoga institutions.

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