Katie Ledecky First Female Olympian Ever Featured on the Cover of National Geographic

It’s been a big month for Katie Ledecky. Just days after announcing a partnership with major swimwear brand TYR at the Pro Swim in Santa Clara, Ledecky announced via social media that she would be gracing the cover of the July issue of National Geographic, which hits newsstands June 26th.

Ledecky is the featured athlete in an article titled “Building a better athlete“, which features numerous athletes who have been deemed incredible including Ledecky, track star Usain Bolt, Paralympian Jarryd Wallace, and swimmings own Michael Andrew. This is the first time that an Olympic swimmer has ever been on the cover of National Geographic. This also marks the first time a female Olympian has graced the cover. Ledecky also shared this photo to her instagram account today, which was used in the feature.

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2 years ago

Lol does Michael Andrew really belong with Ledecky and Bolt

Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

Nah but Dean Ferris does

Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

Arguably yes. Not because he has accomplished (nearly) as much as they have, but because (a) he’s still an elite athlete and world champion, and (b) the story is about new training methods and Andrew takes advantage of unique and controversial training techniques.

Reply to  mcgillrocks
2 years ago

They’ve certainly done a good job of marketing his training as new or even revolutionary, I’ll give you that. And the controversy surrounding him is a testament to how well they have been marketing this “new” idea. But the idea of training at race pace is much older than Michael Andrew (see bob bowman’s talks about Phelps’ training and the recent videos on this site of ledecky in the practice pool), and I think it’s kind of silly to be highlighting someone with so little success compared to the others in the piece.

That being said, I’m glad to have more swimmers in the limelight, and I’m glad for the exposure, no matter the ambassador.

Reply to  Eagleswim
2 years ago

When you break things down like research and experiments, according published literature, his specific type of approach has not been done. So yes, this is different. It is not like anyone else at the elite level has done and if they have, from age group through elite level swimming, has not shared with the masses. If it has been done, please provide the link and share it.

Why is it silly if he is highlighted for his training style and swimming at an elite level? If no one else has done this quite like him, isn’t it worth mentioning given the premise of the article?

Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

Swim fans: We want more exposure!
Michael Andrew in NatGeo: Boo he’s not worthy!

Coach John
Reply to  DMacNCheez
2 years ago

no kidding… bunch of armchair quarterbacks here.

Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

Michael Andrew is fine as long as they limit it to 50 words

Reply to  Pvdh
2 years ago

He must have a great agent.

Meme Gonzalez
2 years ago

SwimSwam be like “where caeleb dressel at tho”

2 years ago

FYI: Schooling made the cover of Nat Geo while swimming in practice.

bear drinks beer
Reply to  200 SIDESTROKE B CUT
2 years ago

To be fair, he has made the cover of many good magazines including Harper’s Bazaar.

Reply to  200 SIDESTROKE B CUT
2 years ago

Maybe you would not mind his exposure if he bleached his hair in blond? Just wondering…

Reply to  PsychoDad
2 years ago

The joke is b/c of Schooling’s comments about his practice times, a well established Schooling joke on SwimSwam. Inferring a hair color change would change the situation completely misses the intent, the joke, and comes off as smarmy. Not cool.

Caeleb Dressel Will Win 9 Gold Medals in Tokyo
Reply to  cbswims
2 years ago


About Coleman Hodges

Coleman Hodges

Coleman started his journey in the water at age 1, and although he actually has no memory of that, something must have stuck. A Missouri native, he joined the Columbia Swim Club at age 9, where he is still remembered for his stylish dragon swim trunks. After giving up on …

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