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Emirati Kitesurfing Champion Bouncing Back From Injury

A self-taught kitesurfing champion who battled back from serious injury to rule the waves has sent out a rallying cry to fellow Emiratis to take up the sport.

Dubai resident Mohammed Al Mansoori was in a coma for a month and faced years of painstaking rehabilitation when he shattered both of his legs in a biking accident at the age of 18 in 1999.

Mr. Al Mansoori is eager for more Emiratis to try out the sport for themselves

A self-taught kitesurfing champion who battled back from serious injury to rule the waves has sent out a rallying cry to fellow Emiratis to take up the sport.

Dubai resident Mohammed Al Mansoori was in a coma for a month and faced years of painstaking rehabilitation when he shattered both of his legs in a biking accident at the age of 18 in 1999.

Before, Mr Al Mansoori was a football player at a local club and a runner. He practiced extreme sports like parkour and pulled stunts on skateboards and rollerblades.

His energetic, thrill-seeking lifestyle was brought crashing down in an instant, leaving him with a fight to walk again.

“The accident left me in a coma for around a month, but when I woke up I could not walk for years. I was new to biking – I had just been practicing for one month when I had the accident,” said Mr Al Mansoori, now 40.

“There were so many broken bones in my legs and injuries to my face and body."

After several years of surgery and plenty of hard work, he got back on his feet – and then onto aboard.

"I don’t remember what my thoughts were at the time, but I definitely never thought I would become the UAE’s kitesurfing champion.

Before, Mr Al Mansoori was a football player at a local club and a runner. He practiced extreme sports like parkour and pulled stunts on skateboards and rollerblades.

His energetic, thrill-seeking lifestyle was brought crashing down in an instant, leaving him with a fight to walk again.

“Before the accident I wanted to become the best football player in the world, that was my goal; but now I assure you that God took what I loved the most from me, football, and gave me something better.”

While on the long road to recovery, Mr Al Mansoori said he happened upon kitesurfing by coincidence.

“I couldn’t drive, so I used to ask my driver to take me to the beach, and there I used to watch the kitesurfers.

“I did not know much about the sport. I just enjoyed watching them.”

The joy turned into a fierce passion, and, as soon as he could walk again, Mr Al Mansoori bought a kiteboard and went to the beach.

“I wasn’t walking well yet, so I couldn’t enter the water. I just trained on the sand for four months.

“I asked the other surfers for safety instructions, and I taught myself from Youtube videos.

“I tried to go down in the water slowly because it was still difficult for me to jump.

“Before the accident, I wanted to become the best football player in the world, that was my goal; but now I assure you that God took what I loved the most from me, football, and gave me something better.”

While on the long road to recovery, Mr. Al Mansoori said he happened upon kitesurfing by coincidence.

“I couldn’t drive, so I used to ask my driver to take me to the beach, and there I used to watch the kitesurfers.

“I did not know much about the sport. I just enjoyed watching them.”

The joy turned into a fierce passion, and, as soon as he could walk again, Mr. Al Mansoori bought a kiteboard and went to the beach.

“I wasn’t walking well yet, so I couldn’t enter the water. I just trained on the sand for four months.

“I asked the other surfers for safety instructions, and I taught myself from Youtube videos.

“I tried to go down in the water slowly because it was still difficult for me to jump.

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