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Alive Mental Health Centre Brings Beach Therapy to Cairo

Taking a walk - slow or brisk - has a lot of proven health benefits, from giving you a quieter mind and better sleep, to the added bonus of fresh, outdoors air.

As the hottest season is coming to a close, making way for fall, plenty of Egyptians are faced with regrets of not carefully planning their summer to make a trip to the beach. Instead, months have gone by, and most of the memories made were in the office, staring at a glaring computer screen.

But summer doesn't have to end in such melancholy for Cairenes. Alive Wellness Centre has brought the beach to New Cairo, where a simulation of a beach was created to hold one-on-one therapy sessions. Being surrounded by nature is said to be a groundbreaking remedy when it comes to mental health and well-being. We all know that sea water does wonders for wounds, and some of us may associate the sound of passing waves with tranquility and quieter days.

The Therapist - Yasmine Abu El Naga

The Beach Therapy room—launched by Alive—provides a quiet environment to take a breather in the midst of a hectic day. It acts as a relief compared to the four-walled offices we’re used to seeing five days a week. The floors are carpeted with sand transported all the way from the beaches of the North Coast, and the wall are adorned with 3D images to create the same feeling of the natural sky outside.

Walking is a symbolic movement to the notions of moving forward and moving on.

Therapist Yasmine Abu El Naga conducts the one-on-one sessions with her clients, and is there to discuss whatever personal problems or thoughts her patient might have. Within the session, new methods and advice will be given and discussed, helping the client get past the obstacles in their lives - whether romantic, career-related, or anything in between. The sessions last from 45 to 60 minutes, depending on the package you’ve paid for.

Alive offers different types of beach-experience packages—both indoors and outdoors. Beach Walk Therapy is a therapy program which combines walking on the beach with the therapist, and giving you the chance to discuss problems that shadow your life and let out any angst or worry building up in you. "Walking is a symbolic movement for the notions of moving forward and moving on," Abu El Naga told Cairo Scene, explaining that adding movement to conversation activates the endorphins - happy chemicals - and as a result triggers parts of the brain associated with positive emotions.

The sound of waves has been proven to trigger parts of the brain associated with empathy, positive emotions, and self-awareness.

Alive's therapy session are psychotherapy-based, meaning that they treat day-to-day mental and emotional pain, unlike psychiatry, which uses medication and targets mental illnesses such as paranoia, major depression, and schizophrenia. 

The walks are proceeded at the clients’ pace, and in case it gets too hot, the customer can choose to take a break in the shade.

Beach Walk Therapy is currently only available at the North Coast; however, Alive is planning on starting the program in Gouna by spring of 2019.

Check out their Facebook page and Instagram page here.

Main image from Unsplash | @RichardNolan.

The content of this article is sponsored.


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