Surfing through her pregnancy was the most natural thing to do for pro surfer Claudia Goncalves. The Brazilian SWOX athlete is an avid big wave surfer and famous TV host with Brazil’s Canal Off. Now that her daughter Clara is no longer a newborn anymore, the little family had their first beach outings. While her baby girl is on the beach with Claudia’s husband or her mother, Claudia gets to enjoy surfing again. How to surf pregnant? How to pack-up for a beach day with a baby? We asked the surfing mom pro – Claudia Goncalves
SWOX: We’ve seen you surfING THROUGH your pregnancy AND MAKING IT LOOK EFFORTLESS: What’s your take on it now that your daughter is a few months old?
Claudia: Yes, I surfed up until about eight months into my pregnancy. On top of that, I also travelled a lot and worked all the way through my pregnancy. For example, when I was 5 month pregnant, we went to California and I got to surf Kelly Slater’s Surf Ranch for the first time. Overall, my experience surfing through pregnancy was really good. I felt healthy and so blessed to be able to keep doing what I love the most. When I look back now, I feel proud of myself, because I trusted my gut feeling and did what felt right. I think I had a happy and easy pregnancy because I allowed myself to truly enjoy and embrace the ride, with all the changes, challenges and uncertainties – I wouldn’t want to change a thing!
SWOX: While you were pregnant and still surfing how did your skin change and what about sun protection for your daughter?
Claudia: During my pregnancy I had melasma on my face. That is a pretty common discoloration of patches of the face skin during pregnancy. Therefore I had to protect my skin with high SPF sunscreen even on cloudy days. My favorite is the SWOX SPF 50 mineral zinc. It helped me a lot. Clara, my daughter, is now only 4 months old and can’t use sun protection yet. We need to keep her in the shade and use sun protection clothing. We are very excited though about the new SWOX mineral line for her and us.
SWOX: You’re back on the board! When did you go back, how was your first session and has happened since then?
Claudia:I’m so happy to be back on my board. It feels so good. My OB-GYN had cleared me to go surfing thirty days postpartum. However, then the COVID-19 pandemic hit Brazil and I had to wait until surfing was allowed again in my hometown Rio de Janeiro. Finally, three months postpartum, it happened. During my first surf session it was hard to paddle out and it felt super strange to pop up. But after a couple of waves, it felt great and I was stoked to even be able to do some good turns. After all, it took me about three surf sessions to feel like myself again on the board. In my opinion, it all comes down to your mindset – I wanted to be back at high performance surfing as soon as possible and thus worked hard to achieve this goal of mine. It’s very comforting to have my Mom on the beach. She’s staying with Clara and when she’s hungry or needs me, I can come in and feed her immediately.
SWOX: When you go to the beach now, there’s so much more to think of. What are your must-haves for a baby beach day?
Claudia: Absolutely. It feels like I am taking my entire house with me every time we go to the beach. It’s been hard to leave the house fast and it seems like I am always forgetting something. One big advantage right now is that I don’t have to worry about snacks yet, since I am still exclusively breastfeeding Clara.
Claudia’s baby checklist for the beach:
- Diaper bag with everything ready to go
- At least 3 extra diapers
- At least 2 changes of clothes for warm and colder weather, no matter how the weather is
- A big sarong so she can sleep under it or we can cover her up
- Towel and blanket
- A hat and a little beanie for her (you never know)
- Stroller or baby carrier, depending on the beach we go to
- SWOX lotion and SWOX zinc for us
Am I forgetting anything….um, that’s it 😉
Check out Claudia’s favorites: