Good news: Yoga is officially 'halal' in Saudi Arabia!
The Saudi Ministry of trade and industry has officially approved the teaching of yoga and listed it under their sports activities. Those wishing to practice or teach yoga can now collect a license from the Ministry.
Nouf Marwaai, Saudi’s first certified yoga instructor has been credited as the driving force behind this development. Marwaai is the founder of the Arab Yoga Foundation in the Kingdom.
Saudi Arabia has repeatedly come under fire for its ultra-orthodox approach. Earlier in the year, a Saudi singer was arrested for making the 'dab' dance move in a performance in Taif after authorities claimed the dance move promoted 'drug culture'.
The approval of yoga comes following a number of reforms in the Kingdom. Two months earlier, a royal decreed declared that woman would be allowed to drive. Stadiums have recently opened their doors to Saudi women for the first time, and the public ban on cinemas lifted.