Tatjana Schoenmaker is a competitive swimmer who represents South Africa internationally. She is a 2021 Olympian, world championship medalist and Commonwealth champion.
2018 Commonwealth Games (Gold Coast, Australia)
In what could be considered a breakout meet, Schoenmaker won the 100 breast (1:06.41) and 200 breast (2:22.02) titles at the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, Australia, setting African records in both events.
2019 World University Games (Napoli, Italy)
Schoenmaker was a double champion at the World University Games in July 2019, winning the 100 breast (1:06.42), after setting the South African national record (1:06.32) in the semifinals, and 200 breast (2:22.92).
2019 World Championships (Gwangju, South Korea)
Schoenmaker bested her own African record in the 200 breast in the event semifinals at the World Championships in Gwangju, Korea, on July 25. She was second in the semis behind defending champion Yuliya Efimova, clocking a 2:21.79.
Schoenmaker touched for 2nd in the final heat, earning her first world championship medal, a silver, in a time of 2:22.52.
2019 Swammy Awards
For her silver medal at the world champs, Schoenmaker earned the African Female Swimmer of the Year Swammy Award.
2020 Record Assault
Despite a year full of lockdowns and cancellations in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Schoenmaker managed to lower 4 out of 6 South African records in the women’s breaststroke events, 3/6 of which were also African records. At the 2020 South African Short Course Championships in October, Schoenmaker went 3/3 in African records, recording pb’s of 30.2, 1:03.89, and 2:18.02. Her times in the 100 and 200 also came as African records.
In December, Schoenmaker kept the momentum rolling at the NTS Championships, breaking the African record in the 50 LCM breast with a time of 30.52.
2020 Swammy Awards
For her performances in the pool, Schoenmaker earned her 3rd consecutive Swammy award for African Female Swimmer of the Year.
2020 Olympic Games
After moving through prelims and semis and notching a personal best (1:04.82) in the 100 breast, she swam in the final of the event, touching 2nd to earn her first Olympic medal, a silver.
Moving onto the 200 breast, Schoenmaker wasted no time making a statement. In the last heat of prelims, the South African exploded with a 2:19.16, a new African record and the #2 swim of all-time, just .05 off the world record from 2013. After recording a slightly slower semi-final performance to put her in lane 4 for the final, Schoenmaker exploded in the final, going out fast and coming home fast to touch at 2:18.95, earning Olympic gold while breaking the world record from 2013.