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A little bit about

Alistair Barnard

Al discovered his love of wild places at a young age, during family holidays at Loch Rannoch, in Scotland. Fascinated by the surrounding hills, there was a burning desire to climb these mountains but without the required skills, guidance and knowledge, they were always tantalisingly out of reach. His passion for the outdoors led him to joining the military where he served with the Royal Air Force Mountain Rescue Service in the Highlands of Scotland for nearly two decades. During this period, he trained and qualified as a Winter Mountain Leader within the Mountain Training Scotland scheme. 


Al's Journey 

Al spent most of his military career instructing novice mountaineers from his unit, and climbed, ski toured and journeyed throughout the mountains of Europe, Alaska, Falkland Islands and the Himalaya on military expeditions and Joint Service Adventurous Training courses.

The commitment that serving in the Mountain Rescue Service (MRS) involved should not be understated. Weekly briefings, training on the mountainous regions of the Scottish Highlands and Islands almost every weekend all whilst maintaining a ‘one hour readiness to move’ for mountain rescue call-outs. It required being available for annual RAF Mountain Rescue Service courses; such as Immediate Emergency Care Courses, Emergency Response Driver Training, Rigid Inflatable Boat training with the Royal Navy, Instructional Techniques, and press/media handling training, among many others.

This collective and continuous learning process within the RAF MRS allowed Al to develop as a team member, outdoors man, a mountaineer, an instructor, a manager and as a rescuer. Al's area knowledge of the Scottish hills benefitted hugely from the variety of weekend basecamp locations and the volume of operational call-outs he was involved with. Cross training with local Police and civilian rescue teams, HM Coastguard, and helicopter crews from all three military services gave Al a deep insight into not just the organisations involved, but more importantly the human relationships and personalities that wove these incredible networks together.


Alongside the RAF MRS, Al’s day job was an Aircraft Weapons Technician, which of course held its own work, training, and deployed operational commitments across the wider RAF. 

After years of pushing his body to its physical limits with Mountain Rescue, coupled with competitive running, cycling and swimming, it was time for a re-assessment to directly focus onto body maintenance and to also nurture inner health to ensure that the hills and wild places, and life in general could be enjoyed indefinitely.

Thanks to numerous and extensive first aid training courses and operational experience with casualties in the hills, he already had an excellent understanding of body mechanics. So after winning a bursary from the renowned Edinburgh and Hong Kong based Yogi, Dhugal Meacham; he qualified as a Yin Yoga Teacher and since then, has continued to further and deepen his knowledge and study of Yoga, human anatomy and kinesiology.

Suffice to say, that whether you are on a yoga mat, in a body of cold water or up a mountain, you are in incredibly safe and knowledgeable hands.


Visually Al

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