You may recognize the name Leilani. She is a 13 year-old girl who is the 2012 national vice-champion of Costa Rica and is currently ranked #1 in Womens Open and Womens Junior categories in the sport of competitive surfing. What makes this girl even more extraordinary is that she has achieved these honors while living with severe idiopathic scoliosis.
In 2012, Leilani was fitted with a Cheneau Rigo scoliosis brace made by Grant Wood, which has stopped the progression of her scoliotic deformity and thus allowed Leilani to continue to compete as one of the top young surfers in the world.
Words of wisdom from Leilani: “Keep it up, train hard, never give up even if other people say so, follow your heart, and if you’re not having fun, there is no point to it. With confidence, you can pretty much do anything.” Leilani does not allow scoliosis to prevent her from pursuing her dreams.