Michael Fred Phelps II (born June 30, 1985) is an American swimmer and the most decorated Olympian of all time, with a total of 22 medals.
Phelps also holds the all-time records for Olympic gold medals (18, double the second highest record holders), Olympic gold medals in individual events (11), and Olympic medals in individual events for a male (13). In winning eight gold medals at the 2008 Beijing Games, Phelps took the record for the most first-place finishes at any single Olympic Games. Five of those victories were in individual events, tying the single Games record. In the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Phelps won four golds and two silver medals, making him the most successful athlete of the Games for the third Olympics in a row.
Phelps is the long course world recordholder in the 100-meter butterfly, 200-meter butterfly and 400-meter individual medley as well as the former long course world recordholder in the 200-meter freestyle and 200-meter individual medley. He has won a total of 71 medals in major international long-course competition, totalling 57 gold, 11 silver, and 3 bronze spanning the Olympics, the World, and the Pan Pacific Championships. Phelps’s international titles and record-breaking performances have earned him the World Swimmer of the Year Award seven times and American Swimmer of the Year Award nine times as well as the FINA Swimmer of the Year Award in 2012. His unprecedented Olympic success in 2008 earned Phelps Sports Illustrated magazine’s Sportsman of the Year award.
After the 2008 Summer Olympics, Phelps started the Michael Phelps Foundation, which focuses on growing the sport of swimming and promoting healthier lifestyles. He continues to work with his foundation after the 2012 Olympics, which he has said will be his last. In April 2014, Phelps announced he would come out of retirement, and would enter an event later that month.