"I've reached my limit," says the Champ.
The three-time and reigning world surfing champion Gabriel Medina has sensationally, though not surprisingly, stepped off the world tour citing mental health issues.
In a long screed posted to Instagram Medina wrote,
2021 was an amazing year for me, I conquered my biggest dream as a surfer, which was to become a three-time world champion.
It was an untouchable stop for me.
Last year, I experienced a roller oaster of emotions in and out of the water, which greatly affected my mental and physical health.
By the end of the season, I was completely drained. I’ve reached my limit. I got my vaccine during the holidays and I thought I would be able to prepare in time for the first leg of the new season, which starts at one of my favorite spots in the world, Pipe.
It was not the case.
I have decided that I will not travel to Hawaii and will take some time to recover mentally and physically. I have a slight hip injury that I’ve been treating since the end of last year.
In addition to the body, I have emotional issues that I need to deal with. Recognizing and admitting to myself that I’m not well has been a very difficult process and choosing to take time to take care of myself was perhaps the hardest decision I’ve ever made in my entire life.
I’ve wondered a lot lately if I should make this public or keep it private, but it’s only fair that all of you who have always rooted for me know the moment I’m facing. Mental health is very important. I need to be 100% mentally to compete again.
I will come back stronger🙏 I love you and thank you for everything.
Four months ago, Medina signalled his intention to quit the tour in an interview with a Brazilian news outlet,
“I need to stop thinking about competition for a while, because everything I do today, food, routine… It’s all focused on competition. I never missed a step. It’s been hard to do this for years. I think the time has come when I need to take a break,” said Medina.
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It ain’t surprising he’s hurting.
Early in 2020, Gabriel split, in a professional as well as a private sense, from his mammy Simone and his step-daddy Charlie Serrano.
Charlie you know as the ubiquitous, unsmiling, ever-supportive pillar behind his equally taciturn looking son.
The split was driven, it was said, by Medina’s surprise marriage to actress and model Yasmin Brunet, parental sadness over losing their lil man, the ol empty nest syndrome.
“They have always lived through Gabriel’s career. Imposing discipline, giving strength and controlling everything closely. Now, he is no longer a boy and shares his life with his wife. It is undeniable how passionate they are,” said a friend.
Since the split he’s got back in touch with his real daddy, Claudinho, who now lives in one of Medina’s houses.