Michael Phelps Bio And Facts

Michael Phelps

Michael Phelps is an American professional swimmer who holds the world record for the most Olympic medals to be won by an individual athlete (28 medals). At 6’4 and 185lbs, Phelps is considered to be one of the best swimmers to ever compete and one of the world’s greatest athletes to ever exist. He holds 39 world records in swimming that he earned while competing for the USA men’s swimming team.

At 15 years old, Phelps became the youngest male swimmer to qualify and compete in the Olympics in 68 years. From his first appearance in the 2000 Sydney Olympics to his last in the 2016 Rio Olympics, Phelps has continued to make history and become a global sensation. Through his talent, sponsorships, endorsements, and charitable actions, Phelps has earned global recognition and respect from swimming fans around the world. Not only is he naturally physically gifted, but he is a hard-working athlete dedicated to always pushing himself to become better. 

  • Birthday: June 30, 1985 (30-06-1985)
  • Education: Towson High School, University of Michigan
  • Net Worth: $80 million
  • Occupation: Swimmer
  • Height: 6’4” (1.93m)
  • Weight: 185 lbs (83.9 kgs)
  • Years Active: 16 years
  • Career Wins: 28 Olympic medals, 34 World Championship medals, 39 world records
  • Nicknames: MP, The Baltimore Bullet, Flying Fish, Deep Sea Frog, Half-man Half-fish, Gomer
  • Teams: Team USA Men’s Swimming

Swimming Career

Michael Phelps began swimming on his high school team and later moved on to be a star swimmer at the University of Michigan. At fifteen, Phelps qualified for the 2000 Sydney Olympics where he shocked the world with his superior talent at such a young age. In 2001, he went to another level when he broke his first world record and then started breaking his own records. 

Phelps went on to compete in 4 more Olympic games, for a total of 5, and 7 World Championship meets, in addition to many USA national meets.

Through these competitions, he has earned countless medals, most of which are gold. Phelps has also broken nearly 40 world records through competing in many different races with freestyle, breaststroke, and butterfly. He has been recognized as the best swimmer of all time and one of the best athletes to ever compete.  

Titles and Awards

Michael Phelps is one of the all time most decorated athletes. From his 5 appearances in the Olympic games from 2000 to 2016, Phelps has earned 28 Olympic medals. 23 of the medals are gold, 2 medals are silver, and 3 medals are bronze. He has also competed in 7 different World Championship competitions from 2001 to 2011. During these competitions, he earned 34 medals. 27 of these medals are gold, 6 medals are silver, and 1 medal is bronze. He has collected all of these medals through competing in many different races in freestyle, breaststroke, butterfly, and medley forms.

In addition to constantly winning medals, Phelps has continuously broken world records since 2001. From being the youngest male swimmer in history to ever set a world record at the age of 15 to be the fastest swimmer in every many of the races he competes in, Phelps is constantly setting and breaking his own records. In total, Phelps has set 39 world records throughout his career.

Personal Life

Michael Phelps was born in Baltimore, Maryland on June 30, 1985 as the son of Fred and Debbie Phelps. His father was a state trooper and his mother was a middle-school principal. He grew up in Towson, Maryland with two older sisters, Hilary and Whitney. When his parents divorced in 1994, they moved in with his mother who they developed a strong relationship with.

Phelps and his sisters joined a local swim team at a young age. His sister Whitney even tried out for the Olympic team at the age of 15 before he did, but injuries set her back. He then went to University of Michigan and swam for all four years.  

Phelps got engaged to his current wife Nicole Johnson in 2015. They were married and welcomed their first son Boomer Robert into the world in 2016. Outside of the pool, Michael is also very involved in charity and community work. He began the Michael Phelps Foundation in 2008 to help continue to grow the sport of swimming and encourage living an active, healthy lifestyle.

Fun Facts

  • If Michael Phelps were a country, he would rank 32nd on the world’s all-time medal count list.
  • Only 12 countries have won more medals than Phelps since he won his first Olympic race in 2004.
  • No other athlete that has competed in the Olympics has reached double-digit gold medals. Phelps has 28 gold medals and there is no one within 2.5 times of his gold medal count.
  • Since the 2004 Athens Olympics, Phelps has medaled in 44% of all men’s Olympic swimming events.
  • Four out of the top nine athletic performances in Summer Olympic history belong to Phelps.
  • Phelps is listed in the all-time standings as having the most medals in a single Olympics.
  • Phelps is one of three athletes in Olympic history to win the same event for four consecutive Olympic games.
  • Through his 23 gold medals, Phelps has set 10 swimming world records and 5 Olympic/American records.


How many Olympic medals does Michael Phelps have?

Michael Phelps competed in a total of 5 Olympic games, his first appearance was at the 2000 Sydney Olympics when he was 15. Throughout his career, Phelps has obtained a total of 28 Olympic medals which is the standing record for the most medals to be won by an Olympic athlete. He has 23 gold medals, 3 silver medals, and two bronze medals. At his last Olympic games in 2016, he won 5 gold medals and one silver medal. He also holds 39 world records in swimming.

Why is Michael Phelps such a fast swimmer?

Michael Phelps is a great swimmer due to his intense drive and dedication, natural physical abilities, and abundance of skills. Phelps has spent years practicing and training in order to be in the best shape possible to compete at the highest level worldwide. His body is also considered to be built for swimming with a long torso and arms, large feet, and shorter legs. Phelps is one of the most naturally skilled swimmers in history, but his desire to continue improving is what sets him apart from other swimmers.

How many Olympic games has Michael Phelps competed in?

Michael Phelps qualified for his first Olympic games at the age of 15. He was the youngest male swimmer to compete in the Olympics in 68 years and those games took place in Sydney, Australia. Since then, Phelps has competed in 4 other Olympics including those in Athens, Beijing, London, and Rio. He is consistently ranked and breaking records, with the record for being the oldest individual gold medalist in Olympic history being broken in 2016. 

What events does Michael Phelps swim?

Michael Phelps swims in many different events and styles of stroke. The strokes that he participates in are the freestyle, breaststroke, and butterfly stroke. Phelps has competed in several different events at both championship and Olympic competitions. Some of his best races include the 200m freestyle, 100m butterfly, and 200m butterfly in both individual and relay events. He has also explored the 200m individual medley event which requires the use of all four strokes.