Olympic Hero Phelps Triumph over ADHD as Big as Quest for 12 GoldsBy Erin Keaveney
Michael Phelps battled ADD (ADHD) before he could take on the world for most ever Olympic Gold Medals
BEIJING (RUSHPRNEWS) 8/15/08 – In what may be an inspiration to ADHD-affected families forever, Michael Phelps is larger than life in every sense of the word.
With 11 career gold medals, the most decorated Olympian of all time – who competes for his sixth gold medal at these Olympic Games tonight – has been head and shoulders above the competition, figuratively and literally. One of the tallest swimmers in the pool at 6 feet 4 inches, Phelps has an even bigger arm span at 6 feet 7 inches. His attention span, on the other hand, is another story.
As a child, Phelps was diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, more commonly known as A.D.H.D. Attending school in Baltimore County, teachers would complain to Phelps’s mother, Debbie, about his restless behavior in the classroom, including his inability to sit still, focus and complete work. At age nine he was officially diagnosed with A.D.H.D. by his doctor and put on medication, which he would later stop taking as he managed the disorder on his own. In a study done last month, the Center for Disease Control reported that about five percent of children in the United States aged 6-17 have been diagnosed with A.D.H.D. The CDC also reported that children with A.D.H.D are more likely to develop chronic health problems, including severely disruptive mental disorders that could become life-altering.
In this case, like many other areas of his life, Michael Phelps is an exception.
Phelps’ combination of obvious early talent, rigid work ethic and rigorous practice schedule have helped him overcome his A.D.H.D. in the pool, blossoming into one of the greatest athletes of his generation. Phelps has swept all five events he has competed in at Beijing, simultaneously breaking world records in his quest to win all eight events he is set to swim. Winning an unprecedented eight gold medals in one Olympic games would surpass current record-holder Mark Spitz, who won seven gold medals at the Munich games in 1972.
Watch Phelps as he focuses his sights on a sixth gold medal when he competes in the 200m IM tonight at 10 p.m. on NBC.
For more news and information on Michael Phelps, visit: http://www.nbcolympics.com/swimming/index.html
NEWS SOURCE: HOLLYWOOD TODAY