Olympian Anthony Ervin adds a golden touch to national water safety campaign

13 | 6 | 2014

Olympic swimmer Anthony Ervin has been keeping busy both in and out of the pool lately. Despite a packed competition schedule, the Olympic Gold Medallist has been using his profile in his home country to support the USA Swimming Foundation’s ‘Make a Splash’ initiative, a national water safety drive with the aim of teaching every child in America how to swim.

In his role as an ambassador for the campaign, Ervin has been leading swimming lessons for kids at the Make a Splash Water Safety Festival in Long Beach, California where he was joined by fellow Olympic champions Janet Evans and Rowdy Gaines.

Ervin, 33, who made his Olympic breakthrough winning Gold and Silver Medals at Sydney 2000, takes his role as USA Swimming Foundation Ambassador very seriously. In fact he attributes his work with children as the reason behind his return to competitive swimming in 2011, claiming that teaching kids helped him to rediscover his passion for the sport which he had lost when he decided to take a break from competition in 2003.

Speaking at the Make a Splash event Ervin said, “I had lost the reason why I had a passion. Through teaching the kids, I rediscovered that.”

Since his Olympic comeback at London 2012, Ervin has been relishing being back in the pool and is now firmly focused on Rio 2016 where he hopes to compete in his third Olympic Games, this time as a veteran of 35 years of age. Before that, however, the freestyler has the immediate task of preparing for the US national championships in California in August where he hopes to be selected for the US Swim Team for the Pan-Pacific meet later this year and the 2015 World Championships.

“It’s important because if I don’t get on the national team this summer, then that’s two years of no major international experience and that’s not how you set up a successful Olympic year,” claimed Ervin.

When he’s not in the pool Ervin keeps himself occupied writing a book and completing a Master’s degree in sport culture and education at the University of California, Berkeley.