There have been some great swimmers in the Olympics over the years. This has seen the sport grow in stature over the years as the impressive ones have bagged loads of medals. However, when it comes to the best of the best, there are five who are the top. These swimmers are the ones that have set the world alight; starting at a young age with swimming lessons, then competing in through high school, college, and then the Olympics. These athletes have set and shattered records in their prime. Here are the top five Olympic swimmers of all time.
1. Mark Spitz
Born in 1950, Mark Spitz is considered one of the best to grace the Olympic games. He is also considered by many the best swimmer of all time in the Olympics. That’s why his name, Mark the Shark, is whispered in awe when records are being talked about. In the 1972 Olympics in Munich, the Shark managed to bag a total of seven gold medals. And that record has to wait until 2008 to go down. That’s how impressive this swimmer was. He managed to bag eight gold, one silver, and one bronze in the three Olympic games he took part in.
2. Michael Phelps
The swimmer who ended up taking Mark Spitz’s record of seven golds in one Olympics is Michael Phelps. He did this in the 2008 Olympics, where he managed to bag eight gold medals at the Beijing Olympics. He also went on to be named the World Swimmer of the year a whopping six times. Overall, Phelps has won nine gold medals over the three Olympics he has been part of. He also has numerous other awards and has a total of 59 medals in all his swimming competitions. He also is second only to Larissa Latynina in the total Olympic medal overhaul.
3. Ian Thorpe
Australian freestyle swimmer is third on the list as he has a total of five Olympic gold medals. This is the most Olympic gold won by any Australian – many the best Olympian consider him in Australian history. He also has several other titles, including being the first person to win six golds in one World Championship.
4. Aleksandr Popov
Born in Russia in 1971, a former Olympic gold medalist is one of the best sprint freestyle swimmers ever. He has a total of four gold and five silver medals in the Olympic games he took part in. He can also be considered one of the top European swimmers of all time.
5. Pieter van den Hoogenband
The fifth top Olympian swimmer of all time has got to be the flying Dutchman. This swimmer managed to win three gold, ten silver, and four bronze Olympic medals. This is a remarkable feat considering the kind of competition he had to come up against. He started to compete in the Olympic games at the age of 18 and managed great success until he retired from the pool. The Dutchman was born in 1978 in the Netherlands and represented his country with grace.
Swimming To Victory
The number knows the top swimmers of medals that carry. These guys above have the most of any swimmers that have come to the Olympic games. They also hold several records in the game that take time to shutter.