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Gymnast Habiba Marzouk performs in Pharaonic-inspired garb at World Gymnastics Championship

As graceful as a butterfly and with the beauty of a queen, gymnast Habiba Marzouk performed in the World Rhythmic Gymnastics Championships held in Spain, with all eyes drawn to her elegant movements and the distinctly Pharaonic attire she wore.

Photos of Marzouk performing while wearing clothes inspired by ancient Egyptian queens were shared across Arab and international news sites.

She danced to the beloved Egyptian song “Luxor Baladna” (Luxor Our Town), by the late artist Mohamed al-Ezaby, with the crowd sheering her performance.

“I was one of the participants in the opening ceremony of the Rams Road, which took place in Luxor Governorate some time ago, so this show inspired me to present a similar image in the tournament,” Marzouk said, adding that she has been training nearly a month for the show, as reported not only by Arab and international papers but the official Olympics website itself.

Rhythmic gymnastics is a special type of gymnastics competition intended for women only, in which the athlete performs rhythmic movements in an aesthetically graceful manner to the tune of music she chooses while holding something in her hand, which may be a ball, a scepter, or a rope, for example.

Judges evaluate her based on the agility and difficulty of the movements she performs, including the skill of launching and picking up the instrument, alongside the overall harmony of her body to the music.


A born gymnast

Marzouk, 21, began gymnastics training at the age of three years.

She currently studies at the Faculty of Medicine, and hopes that one day there will be a special department to study the injuries of athletes.

Marzouk was chosen by the UN to be an ambassador for an initiative concerned with developing the skills of young people globally and linking them to employment opportunities.

She was also chosen as an ambassador for UNICEF in a campaign to raise awareness about diabetes and the dangers of sugar consumption.

Her talent has awarded her several medals, including a bronze medal at Luxembourg Championship, and a silver medal and two bronze medals in the Croatia International Championships. She recently won the gold medal in the African Rhythmic Gymnastics Championships in the individual and team competitions, qualifying her to represent Egypt in the 2024 Olympics.

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