We know he’s a machine in the water. We also know Michael Phelps is the most decorated Olympian of all time with 22 medals. But there might be a few things you don’t about this amazing athlete.
1. He’s kind of a big deal
When you get a street named after you, you know you’ve made it. He has one named after him in his hometown of Baltimore, Maryland.
2. It’s a family thing
His sister, Whitney Phelps, was a member of the 1995 World Championship team.
3. You can also call him Big Foot…Literally
His feet have been referred to as “fins” by the media, because he wears size 14 shoe. His wing span measures in at 6 feet, 7 inches.
4. He has an interesting approach to swimming
He has double-jointed knees and elbows, which play a role in his famous dolphin-like kick.
5. Goes to the beach….but doesn’t swim
Michael says he does go to the beach but won’t go in the ocean. He says he spends enough time in water.
6. Can teach you a different language too
In 2008, Michael appeared in an infomercial, hosted by Tracy Gallagher and Duane Sider, for the “Rosetta Stone” language learning software.
7. And he’s a very giving man
After the 2008 Olympics, Phelps used his $1-million Speedo bonus to set up the Michael Phelps Foundation. His foundation focuses on growing the sport of swimming and promoting healthier lifestyles. Now that’s cool…
8. Putting those rumors to rest
During the 2008 Olympics Phelps was questioned about whether perhaps his feats were “too good to be true”, a reference to unsupported rumors that Phelps might be taking performance enhancing drugs. In response, Phelps noted that he had signed up for Project Believe, a project by the United States Anti-Doping Agency in which U.S. Olympians can volunteer to be tested in excess of the World Anti-Doping Agency guidelines. During the games, Phelps passed all nine tests that were administered to him.
9. Swims like…..a bird?
He’s known for the Condor Flap. To loosen up for a swimming competition, he bends over and flaps his long arms up and down like a large bird.
10. And now he has a hot girlfriend
Michael was always known as someone who concentrated on swimming. Now that he’s retired he stepping out with his hot new girlfriend Megan Rossee. Her nickname for him, btw? “Bear”. How cute…..
Phelps also holds the all-time records for gold medals (18, double that of the next highest record holders), gold medals in individual events (11) and Olympic medals in individual events for a male (13). Wow. Do you think he’s an overachiever?