On Sunday, surfing world champion Filipe Toledo made a significant announcement, revealing his decision to withdraw from the 2024 professional world tour.
The Brazilian, a two-time world champion, cited the need for a one-year mental health break from competition, shedding light on the toll that a decade of competing at the highest level has taken on him.
Toledo, 28, is widely recognized as the fastest surfer in the world, having dominated the past two seasons with his exceptional skills, characterized by searing carves and aerial maneuvers.
As a leading member of the "Brazilian Storm," a close-knit group from Brazil that has collectively secured seven of the nine most recent men's championships, Toledo has played a pivotal role in elevating the country's prominence in the surfing world.
Toledo's decision comes as a reminder of the importance of prioritizing mental well-being in high-stakes and high-profile sporting careers.
The toll of consistently competing at the pinnacle of the sport has prompted him to step back temporarily to focus on recovery and prepare for the next phase of his career.