Dean McFarlane is a pilots’ instructor at Emirates, but the 50-year-old is not one to shirk when it comes to keeping a healthy fitness regimen.

South African McFarlane has spent 16 years in Dubai, and he is loving every moment of his stay here, thanks to his newfound passion for padel. His love for padel came more out of a necessity after he struggled to find regular tennis partners.

“My wife saw the padel courts at Emirates Golf Club and she urged me to go and have a look. Being a tennis player, it was not too tough for me to love this game. And since then I have always managed to make time in staying fit and trim even at this age,” McFarlane told Gulf News.

“Most often we find people saying they do not get time to exercise. Yes, not finding time in a busy schedule can be a challenge, but it is all about making the time for yourself as the exercise can only benefit you and help you stay healthy,” he added.

McFarlane is participating in the padel competition at the Seventh Nad Al Sheba Ramadan Sports Tournament. The competition has attracted more than 100 players from across the UAE, and McFarlane is only happy to be part of such an event.

“No doubt, my profession can take away a lot of my time. But I always feel I owe it to sport and the fact that I need to keep healthy and fit. Most of the people I meet always complain that they don’t get the time for exercise. That’s just an excuse. One has to make the effort as one owes it to oneself,” he affirmed.

“The NAS Sports Tournament is a wonderful opportunity for everyone to get involved and stay fit during this holy month. I am glad to be part of this,” McFarlane added.