The only thing more unusual than surfing while pregnant might be surfing while pregnant in Minnesota.
A Lino Lakes woman recently attracted online attention after sharing a video on Instagram of herself wakesurfing behind a boat on Centerville Lake while nearly a week overdue with her baby.
On her personal Instagram account Kolby Fahlsing wrote that she “enjoyed a day out on the boat and tried to relax” and hoped that “maybe wakesurfing will get things going.”
The 32-year-old bridal boutique owner appeared to be in her element, flashing a “hang loose” gesture as she rode the wake back and forth with ease.
Five days after posting the video, Fahlsing gave birth to her son, Wilder. The video has since been viewed more than 14,300 times.
Wakesurfing is a water sport in which a rider trails behind a boat, riding the boat’s wake without being directly pulled by the boat.
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.
Fahlsing said she got approval from her doctor but disapproval from some others.
“I hate all the limitations people put on pregnant women,” she told the Star Tribune. “There’s this expectation that pregnant women are fragile and should be sitting at home waiting for things to happen.”
Fahlsing addressed the risks of wakesurfing for two in response to some comments she received on social media, but also noted the precautions she took: “I’m very safe and know what I’m doing. I think it’s good to celebrate what our bodies can do,” she said. “I am just doing what I love and wakesurfing is a huge stress reliever for me. I’ve grown up on the water so I love being out there.”
The new mother said that wakesurfing is a low-impact sport done behind a special inboard boat with the engine placed backward in the rear of the boat. Fahlsing said she was only moving at a speed of 9 miles per hour, so if she would have fallen, it would have been no different from jumping into the lake.
Fahlsing isn’t the first to participate in water sports while pregnant. Professional surfer and shark attack survivor Bethany Hamilton also surfed well into her pregnancy.
In Hawaii, it’s known as “hapai surfing”, which means “pregnant surfing” and is considered to be a meditative act that can bring rejuvenation and empowerment to a pregnant woman.