Give swimmers more post-career support, urges Brenton Rickard

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Read The Sydney Morning Herald

Two-time Olympic Games medallist Brenton Rickard has implored officials to build a post-career support network for Australia’s swimmers to help them transition to life out of the pool.

Rickard is helping Swimming Australia create a new program to prepare athletes for retirement as three of the sport’s golden boys – Ian Thorpe, Grant Hackett and Geoff Huegill – struggle with falls from grace.

Thorpe has battled depression, Hackett went to rehabilitation in the US for an addiction to sleeping pills and Huegill was arrested last week for alleged cocaine possession.

brenton rickard photoPhoto by The Wolf

Rickard said the trio’s battles served as a reminder “no one is immune” from post-career struggles.

Officials are working behind the scenes to create a better support network and Rickard revealed he was part of a swimming “think tank” at the national titles in April.

Former 100-metre breaststroke world record holder Rickard retired from swimming last year after 13 years with the Australian team.

“You lose that identity, you go from being part of what we regard as being really special – the Australian swim team – to not having that at all,” Rickard said.

Read more here on The Sydney Morning Herald

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Production engineer and certified swim coach. Full-time IT consultant, spare-time swimming aficionado. 2 sons, 2 daughters and a wife. President of the Faroe Islands Swimming Association. Likes to run :-)

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