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You Can Try This at Home, but Meditation Studios Are Currently in Vogue


Hamid Jabbar gave up his practice of law for a full-time yoga/meditation practice.

The trials and tribulations of multi-tasking as an intellectual properties litigator brought Hamid Jabbar to the mat, first as a yoga instructor and then as a meditation guide.

Jabbar, who studied music at NYU before earning his law degree at UCLA, got into meditation when he first started practicing law. “Law created a disconnection between me and my body,” he says.

While we thought Jabbar was a novelty, he says, “It’s not that uncommon to find lawyers who teach yoga and meditation.” But to do it well—and full time—requires leaving behind all the lawyer trappings of expensive homes, fancy cars, Rolex watches, fine wine, five-star hotels in Europe. You get the picture.

The 37-year-old is one of the instructors at a new franchise, Current Meditation, in Phoenix, that was started by family members from three health-related franchises, Massage Envy, European Wax and Amazing Lashes. Ross Weisman is the CEO of Current.

Mindfulness is making its way into the mainstream. Most yoga classes have a few minutes at the end of the session to close your eyes and concentrate on your breath, but it’s not enough. Yoga has become exercise, for the most part, Weisman says. Which is why his meditation studios will be separate facilities, not just add-ons for yoga studios or gyms.

Meditation has been described as being akin to rebooting your internal computer. Benefits include reduction of stress, improved concentration, increased happiness and slowing the aging process. While waiting for the franchise to get up and running, here are some tips from Jabbar on how to do begin a meditation practice on your own:

• Get in a comfortable position (sitting, lying down, lying in a hammock) and close your eyes;

• Turn off all external distractions (thoughts, cell phones, fitness trackers, barking dogs may have to be marooned temporarily in the backyard);

• Switch from a tight-breathing model to a more relaxed state of being;

• Try to clear your mind of all thoughts, good or bad;

• Breathe in through your nose, out through your nose;

• Try not to fall asleep, but don’t get focused on staying awake—breathe.

• Start with a minute and gradually work your way up to 10 minutes, then 20 minutes, then longer.

And that is why there’s a need for guided classes.

Jabbar says he thought about buying a franchise, but decided, “I just prefer to teach.”

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Tom KaiserTom Kaiser is senior editor of Franchise Times. He can be reached at 612.767.3209, or send story ideas to tkaiser@franchisetimes.com.
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