We sat down with Coach Yassin Mostafa for an interview and talked all about his motivational journey and success story.
When did your passion for sports really begin?
I’ve always been into sports since I was a kid; I started with swimming and gymnastics until the age of 6 then started tennis until the age of 12. I played all types of sports and specifically excelled at track and field and basketball. When I came to Egypt, I pursued basketball as I wanted to become a professional basketball player. At the age of 14, I was denied a transfer to a club that I really wanted to join. This is when I decided to pursue boxing. it was always a sport that I wanted to play since I used to watch Muhammed Ali, Fraiser, Foreman with my grandfather who loved boxing as well.
When did you get serious about sports?
Things took a turn at the age of 25 when I left the corporate life, not knowing what I was going to do yet. I had just started practicing Pilates. My instructor, who later became my mentor, Mila from reform pilates believed I was going to be a great instructor one day. She insisted I start studying and used to help me to get a kickstart at instructing. I did and I loved it by the minute. She pushed me at getting better and helped me in so many ways. I can proudly say she paved the path for my career in sports and fitness.
I instructed pilates for 3 years, and had picked up capoeira along the way, fell in love with capoeira and saw how much pilates was helping. My professor at the time Passoka had also believed in me instructing capoeira for beginners and I was always incorporating pilates fundamentals in all my training. I had done my share of weights and body weights since the age of 16, but now with the understanding of basic principles of pilates along with weights, capoeira and of course in Pilates.
4 years down the line of my fitness journey I became a physical and health education teacher to bring what I love most in life (sports) to the ones I see need it the most, teenagers.
The way I see it, kids are getting lazy by the minute with all the technology out there, them not moving is always a great recipe for gambling with drugs and alcohol, something I gave up 10 years ago. I wanted to give back by trying to show to the kids what they could be, to be in better shape, healthy and most of all look good.
What about boxing? How did this one become such a major part of your life?
When I went to Gouna, to teach over at EGIS, I had a lot of free time. That’s when I started focusing on coaching boxing and kickboxing, capoeira and HIIT and weights. When I came back to Cairo, I had a solid base with boxing, it was still not that big in Egypt.
I worked more with women to help those who want to get in shape without the getting bored at the gym. I used to tell them ‘Come put your gloves on, you get to punch something that doesn’t punch back, burn more calories than any other sport, get a good sweat and feel good right after’.
I used to mix boxing and HIIT in circuit training, worked on conditioning versus time, and tried making it as fun as possible. FITBOX was my home when I came back from Gouna, it was the 1st place with that underground boxing vibe going on after the knockout gym that had burnt down some 15 years before.
I had the honor of working with one of if not the most hardworking athlete of this generation Andrea King cheetah Valavanis as his Mitt coach for his professional journey that has been going very well God bless. I explored the Maadi scene for a while as well over at the LAB which to continue with what I did best, boxing and conditioning. All this being a PE teacher in the morning with the kids, and coaching adults at night.
We know you are a part of TWC now, can I tell us more about that?
Yes, I recently joined the TWC family with top athletes and my brothers Sherif Bendary, Hatem Abdelakher and Mostafa El Shaal aka Batchy.
Any final words?
Fitness is where I see myself, where I know myself, and where I feel I’m giving back hoping I can make a difference with just 1 person for life. Sports is basically who I am.