Brazilian-born Leticia Bufoni is probably the most badass person you’ll read about today. She took up skateboarding at age 9 and by 14 she’d convinced her father to let her stay in Los Angeles after competing at the X-games, to pursue the sport professionally. Since then, things have gone shockingly well. Bufoni’s got the Summer X Games golds, the Nike endorsement, and the famous friends. This year, she became the first female skater to score a Beats by Dre campaign.
We talked to Leticia about her pump up playlists, how all the “first female to x” titles make her feel, the insane workout regimen she follows, and what it’s like to prep for the Olympics.
How did skating become a part of your life, and when did you know you wanted it to be your career?
I was kid in Brazil, and I was into soccer. Some friends introduced me to it and once I got on the board I fell in love with it and never wanted to stop. My dad didn’t take me seriously at first, but I eventually convinced him and he ultimately supported me. When I had the chance to come to LA to compete in X Games in 2007 he came with me and finally understood my passion for skateboarding.
After that, we made the decision for me to stay in LA and pursue a career in skateboarding. At 14, it was a huge risk and a big step in my life. Looking back, I’m thankful that my family let me chase after my dream.
You’re one of the top female skaters; you won the first-ever SLS Women’s Super Crown, and you’re currently the only female athlete to win three X Games Gold Medals in the same year, what has that journey been like?
It’s been a lot of hard work but it’s also been fun being able to travel around the world meet new friends and skate some incredible places. I feel blessed because I never thought skateboarding would take me around the world.
How do you think this industry is different for women? What do you want outsiders to know about female skaters?
I really don’t look at the industry as different for women. I mostly skate with the guys because it helps me train and elevate my skills. This year I was fortunate to skate with the guys as the only female at the RedBull HartLines contest and was happy with the results. Everyone should know we’re one big family and open to everyone… whether you’re male or female, we all share the love of skateboarding.
From looking at your Instagram, it’s obvious that you train like a hardcore athlete. What’s your motivation?
I love to take care of my body and I feel like training helps me prevent injuries. I eat right, work out and get as much sleep as possible to always perform at my best. I know it sounds cliche but I make it a priority to feel good inside and out.
Aside from skating, what’s your favorite work out?
I can’t say it’s considered a workout but I love to skydive. It’s totally different from skateboarding… it’s a huge rush. It takes me out of my element and challenges me in different ways.
How are you preparing for the Olympics?
I can’t say I’m training for the Olympics at this point, but I definitely think about it… Even though I live in LA, I’ll be extremely honored to have the chance to represent Brazil. Right now I’m focused on doing what I normally do — skate every damn day.
Since you’re signed with Beats, can you give us five songs and artists that are on your workout playlist?
Music always pumps me up and gets me going before anything I do. I play “Violet,” by Hole; “Welcome to the Jungle,” by Guns N’ Roses; “Unforgettable,” by Swae Lee and French Montana, “Swang,” by Rae Sremmurd; “Rolex,” by Ayo & Teo.