Athletes & Celebrities

Olympic Swimmer George Bovell is Ready to Answer London's Call

This veteran has medals on his mind as he heads into his fourth Olympics.

Olympic Swimmer George Bovell is Ready to Answer London's Call

You had an auto accident last year, can you tell us about it?

A dump truck collided into my car door. I saw it coming, so I threw my body weight over to the passenger side, which is how I didn’t get crushed. It was last August, right after the World Championships.It forced me to spend seven weeks very, very quietly. If I went upstairs too fast or got my blood pressure up too much, I could have run the risk of having a stroke.I had a bruise on my brain. I lost a lot of muscle and I did not have much of an appetite. I wasn’t able to work out, and I was amazed at how quickly you can atrophy. When I started back from scratch, I started back with a lot of general physical fitness with full body weights and cross training.

Your old coach Mike Bottom contacted you during your recovery and eventually you went to train with him in Michigan, but how long did it take before your felt back to normal again?

After repeated cat scans and monitoring, the bruise was absorbed, and I got the all clear from the neurosurgeons to resume training. It took my body a while to catch up with the level of exertion I was putting it under. At the beginning of the season you get so tired, but over a week or two your body finds a homeostasis and you are able to take the work so much better.

In addition to your work at the pool, what kind of gym work do you do?

We follow the belief that the better athlete you are the better swimmer you will be. I don’t really do weights that are too specific. I do a lot of Olympic lifting. I’ve gotten into pulling recently; lat pulls and pull-ups are very important in our sport.

I have a good strength-to-weight ratio. I want to be explosive because I start from a standstill. So, the better my vertical can be, the better my dive can be.


NEXT: Bovell on the Body Suit, Nutrition And His Goals for London>>


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