How mom-to-be surfed her way through 9 months of pregnancy - WRBL

How mom-to-be surfed her way through 9 months of pregnancy

Posted: Updated:
(TODAY.com) -  To a non-surfer, it seems hard enough to hold your balance on a surfboard on your own two feet. Now imagine adding a baby bump.

That's exactly what mom and surfer Kristi Olivares did, four days a week, through all nine months of her pregnancy. She filmed her experience, too, in a video that she posted to YouTube earlier this month.

Olivares, who is from Vancouver, B.C., but now lives in Sydney, has been surfing for four years, and she wanted to share her love of the ocean with her not-yet-born baby. Here's how she described a typical pregnant surfing session to the website shesurfs.com: “I wait for a wave with my hand on my belly and know that my growing baby can feel the magic, too.” (This, by the way, was at 30 weeks!)

She says that she was able to gradually adjust to the changes in her body and her new center of balance.

"I felt like I had to learn to catch waves all over again," Olivares said in an email to TODAY.com

Olivares did have a set of surfing-while-pregnant rules for herself: She tried to only surf in waves that were waist high or smaller. And she enlisted her husband or a friend to help her carry her board to the beach – or, if no one was available, she’d carry the board to the shore by balancing it on her head, which, she says, distributed its weight more evenly.

She says she got a “strong reaction” from some people who were quick to give her the “Isn’t that dangerous?" speech, usually from those who weren't familiar with surfing. But she explained to them that she adjusted her surfing style to fit her changing body, and she argued that surfing keeps her fit, and acts as a stress-reliever. 

Her doctor, who is a surfer himself, approved her decision to keep surfing, providing that she did it sensibly and carefully, Olivares says. Dr. Raul Artal, chair of the department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women's Health at Saint Louis University, says he agrees with her doctor's recommendations, but adds that she should also make sure to use sunscreen liberally, wear warm enough clothing and hydrate adequately, because hyperthermia, hypothermia and dehydration could trigger preterm labor. (Under U.S. guidelines, the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends that a healthy pregnant woman may continue an exercise program she did before she became pregnant.)

Olivares gave birth to her water baby, Alexander Bobby, on Sept. 10, and she says Baby Al has been to the beach almost every day since he was 5 days old. She says that her little boy is always a relaxed, happy baby, but that's especially true at the beach. 

"I believe that he recognizes the sound of the crashing waves and the motion of walking on the sand from when he was in my belly," she said. "I always got such a sense of calm and happiness from him when he was in my womb and I was out surfing, I could almost picture him smiling as we sailed along the water. He is a true ocean baby!"


  • 8 On Your SideMore>>

  • FL vehicle registration renewal fees drop

    FL vehicle registration renewal fees drop

    Monday, September 1 2014 11:48 AM EDT2014-09-01 15:48:49 GMT
    That little gift you get from the state on your birthday every year, to renew your car tag, is going to be cheaper starting Monday.  The cut will save drivers about $13 to $25 depending on the size of their vehicle.
    That little gift you get from the state on your birthday every year, to renew your car tag, is going to be cheaper starting Monday.  The cut will save drivers about $13 to $25 depending on the size of their vehicle.
  • Mold takes over St. Pete condo, creeps into neighbors' homes

    Mold takes over St. Pete condo, creeps into neighbors' homes

    Friday, August 29 2014 5:48 PM EDT2014-08-29 21:48:06 GMT
    Josephine Ramos is literally sick about the toxic black mold growing in the St. Petersburg condominium beside hers. She's been feeling ill for months with headaches and breathing problems. Recently, she had peak inside the condo next doors and couldn't believe her eyes.
    Josephine Ramos is literally sick about the toxic black mold growing in the St. Petersburg condominium beside hers. She's been feeling ill for months with headaches and breathing problems. Recently, she had peak inside the condo next doors and couldn't believe her eyes.
  • Lakeland neighborhood has continuing water problems, asks 8OYS for help

    Lakeland neighborhood has continuing water problems, asks 8OYS for help

    Friday, August 29 2014 5:03 PM EDT2014-08-29 21:03:34 GMT
    Some Lakeland residents are tired of wondering whether they'll have water at home. Over the past month, they tell 8 On Your Side that they've lost water with no warning at least five times. And what's worse, the water stays off for up to eight hours at a time
    Some Lakeland residents are tired of wondering whether they'll have water at home. Over the past month, they tell 8 On Your Side that they've lost water with no warning at least five times. And what's worse, the water stays off for up to eight hours at a time
  • NewsMore>>

  • Gov. Scott begins campaign bus tour in Tampa Bay area

    Gov. Scott begins campaign bus tour in Tampa Bay area

    Monday, September 1 2014 4:55 PM EDT2014-09-01 20:55:10 GMT
    Gov. Rick Scott kicked off a statewide bus tour Monday, focusing on tax cuts and bashing his the record of his opponent - and predecessor."We've been cleaning up Charlie Crist's mess for three years," Scott said.Calling Crist a "slick politician and a smooth talker,"
    Gov. Rick Scott kicked off a statewide bus tour Monday, focusing on tax cuts and bashing his the record of his opponent - and predecessor."We've been cleaning up Charlie Crist's mess for three years," Scott said.Calling Crist a "slick politician and a smooth talker,"
  • St. Petersburg plane pulled from Tampa Bay after Sunday crash

    St. Petersburg plane pulled from Tampa Bay after Sunday crash

    Monday, September 1 2014 3:22 PM EDT2014-09-01 19:22:09 GMT
    The plane that crashed in Tampa Bay, off the coast of St. Petersburg Sunday,has been recovered.A recovery team started work early this morning. It took hours to bring the plane up from about 25 feet under water. The company that owns the plane, Aerial Banner, Inc., sent company representatives to St. Petersburg.
    The plane that crashed in Tampa Bay, off the coast of St. Petersburg Sunday,has been recovered.A recovery team started work early this morning. It took hours to bring the plane up from about 25 feet under water. The company that owns the plane, Aerial Banner, Inc., sent company representatives to St. Petersburg.
  • Bubba 'The Love Sponge' to announce new Tampa gig

    Bubba 'The Love Sponge' to announce new Tampa gig

    Monday, September 1 2014 3:09 PM EDT2014-09-01 19:09:07 GMT
    File photo of Bubba the Love Sponge ClemFile photo of Bubba the Love Sponge Clem
    Bubba "The Love Sponge" announced on his Twitter page Monday that he will soon have a new Tampa home.
    Bubba "The Love Sponge" announced on his Twitter page Monday that he will soon have a new Tampa home.
  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

1350 13th Avenue
Columbus, GA 31901

Telephone: 706.323.3333
Fax: 706.327.6655
Email: news@wrbl.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.