Need ideas for Father’s Day gifts? We caught up with one of our favorite local dads, Rob Machado, to talk surf life, mindfulness and making an impact. See what’s on his wish list.
Surfer. Environmentalist. And, of course, Vuori collaborator. Rob Machado wears many hats, but to Macy, Jaxton, and Rose he’s simply “Dad.” We caught up with him at his favorite beach near our hometown of Encinitas, CA to talk about dad life, the activities that keep him grounded and the styles that keep him on the move, all summer long.
“Surfing has taught me so many lessons, it’s just endless,” says Rob. “But patience is way up on the list… There’s a destination out there that you’ve got to fight to get to—you’re duck-diving, holding your breath, getting bounced around. Then you finally get out there and you have this moment to recover. And then it’s just about waiting.” Surfing is unlike any other sport in that way, he says. “You have to wait for these moments to arise and it’s a dance... You have to be ever-present to be able to react on what’s constantly changing.”
Even the greats have days when they’re waiting on the waves. “There are times when I can’t surf,” says Rob. That’s when he leans into other practices. “Whenever I can, I’ll do some quick yoga, breathing, even an ice bath. Anything I can fit in that keeps me centered and brings my focus back so that I can care for myself.”
For the active dad, self-care means movement. Give him the Kore Short, “one of my all-time faves,” says Rob. “It's kind of the all-inclusive, do-anything short. Just throw it on in the summer, go for a ride, jump in the ocean, jog home, do some yoga. They're that good.”
“It was really cool to help design a boardshort,” says Rob, who knows a thing or two about the performance details that will keep a surfer comfortable in the water. “I was very fortunate to be able to be included in the whole design process.” Some of his favorite features? The comfortable Neoprene waistband, zip safety pocket, and fabric made from over 50% recycled materials. Also crucial: “they’re stretchy—but not too stretchy. Just the right stretch.” If you know, you know.
Keep Dad comfortable in the waves with the Infinity Boardshort, our collaboration with Rob Machado.
“This sounds strange but I find stillness in really chaotic environments like the ocean,” says Rob. When I get out in the water and it’s a hectic environment—water, currents, waves—that’s where I feel really calm and relaxed.” His mindfulness practice can be credited with helping him find that calm. “Yes, I do have a busy chaotic life, I have children so sometimes it is challenging to find those moments of stillness. That's why I'm so grateful that I have surfing because that is the reset for me.”
For the chill dad, give him a boost in super soft comfort for lazy weekends or practicing mindfulness. The cozy Ponto Pant is key.
Rob’s children attended the same elementary school he did, and it was on a campus visit one day in 2004 when he had a moment of inspiration. He was surprised to find that the kids in his daughter’s class were all using single-use plastic water bottles. “I thought, let’s do something positive at this little school right here,” he says about the moment that led to him founding the Rob Machado Foundation, which provides schools with environmental education and the tools necessary to implement recycling and gardening programs.