Michael Phelps is an American swimmer notable for having won 8 gold medals in swimming in a single Olympic Game. He has the second most Olympic medals than any other athlete on record, the first, being gymnast Larissa Latynina. He ties the record with Eric Heiden and Vitaly Scherbo for having won the most individual gold medals in a single Olympics. Aside from his Olympic wins, he has also been a constant winner in the World Championships and in other major events. He was named American Swimmer of Year and World Swimmer of the World multiple times since 2001.
As a young boy, Phelps was diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). He started swimming when he was seven years old. His sisters who were also swimmers influenced him. Swimming also served as an outlet for his energy. He soon proved to be an excellent swimmer. By age 10, he was already breaking records for his age group. This trend continued and helped him qualify for the 2000 Olympics at age 15.
Phelps attended the University of Michigan where he took up sports marketing and management. He also trained vigorously for the 2008 Olympics while there. He also announced in May 2008 that he will be leaving Michigan and return to Baltimore in order to help the Baltimore Aquatic Club elevate its status.
At the 2004 Olympics, Phelps won 6 gold medals. At the same games, he won 2 bronze medals. The following Olympic Games (2008) was his most prolific event. He won 8 Gold medals and quickly shot to international fame. The whole world, most especially the USA and his locale Baltimore, watched intently as he took medal after medal after medal. Phelps is also a successful athlete in the World Championships. As of 2007, he has won 18 gold medals for the long course and one for the short course.