A pillar of the adventure sports community

He grew up amidst the wild mountains of Al Dakhiliyah specifically in Ghafat in the Wilayat of Bahla. His first steps towards becoming a full-fledged adventurer had been fostered not only by his village’s towering peaks but of the lush and rich neighbouring wilayats of Al Hamra and Nizwa.
As someone who came from Bahla, Al Hassan al Henaei has always been fascinated with his town particularly because of Bahla’s long history most known for its modern and ancient mysteries. Al Hassan has explored the many nooks and crannies of his town said to be at one point, the centre of civilisations. This town has been visited by great Sultans and figures in the past as it is protected by towering mountains that served as its walls. Furthermore, it is said that the fortification of Bahla the second-longest wall in the world after the Great Wall of China. Knowing this, Al Hassan felt that this ancient history should be introduced to all people in and outside the Sultanate.
Al Hassan is a certified adventure coach in both mountaineering and mountain biking, an adventure Instructor in canoeing, hiking, swimming, running races, cave exploration, and ice skating.
He said that having grown in the beautiful village of Al Ghafat, surrounded by wadis and mountains, the fascination for the outdoor and the passion to explore became a logical next step.
“From a young age, I loved travelling and I had this spirit of adventure. I used to walk in the valleys, swim and climb mountains in my village with my friends,” he shared.
“Even back travellers as always supported by the people around me and I wouldn’t have enjoyed the success I enjoy now if not for that support and encouragement of these people”, he said.
He added, “The strongest support was from our government that encourages young travellers and adventurers to blossom and grow up to realise their dreams”.
Hassan was fortunate to take part in a specialised training conducted by an adventure institute. He described the experience as a short-term course that falls under “a week of interest”.
He was then selected by the centre for an advanced course in Oman, and then another set of learnings in the United Kingdom.
“I have continued to develop my skills and work to refine and upgrade them to the present day. My fellow coaches and I have set up our own team”, he said.
“We were created to overcome difficulties, but there are challenges that we must overcome and deal with to continue towards achieving the goals and ambitions,” he said.
For Al Hassan, he described an adventure sports instructor as doing more than just the sporting skills.
“My job title involves guiding groups through group initiatives, teach proper sporting techniques, teach proper care and maintenance of ropes, teach how to deal with other life-supporting equipment as they are very important for performing any kind of action properly,” he said.
From his challenging beginning, Al Hassan has now become a
pillar for his community and became a consultant for different activities within places that he has explored and venture to.
He hopes to continue this career trajectory.
As for his future ambitions, Al Hassan believes that adventure sport is in a great spot as many young people are beginning to do more of the activities they offer. Oman’s picturesque geographical nature is a pleasure to irrigate the adventurers, satisfy their inclinations and needs and encourage them to practice their hobbies freely but within safe limits and under the supervision of competent trainers.
Al Hassan believes that many people would feel enthused to go adventuring, but unfortunately, they lack the essential awareness on the safety measures.
“For any would-be adventurers, here are some tips. You have to be fully prepared for adventure by wearing the right shoes for hiking and the right helmet and the appropriate outfit. You need to know how to follow the paths, be patient and upgrade your endurance skills. They also have to take the necessary precautions such as a first aid kit, water and proper nutrition,” he said.
Al Hassan knows that any outdoor adventure has risks but they help eliminate those by ensuring that they keep innovating.