Olympic Champion Adam Peaty To Take Break, ISL Participation In Doubt

On the heels of defending his individual Olympic gold medal in the men’s 100m breaststroke, British powerhouse Adam Peaty has revealed he will be taking an extended break from the pool now that his job in Tokyo is done.

As reported by The Telegraph, new father Peaty says he is planning on staying out of the pool for at least one month to keep his mental health in check and prepare for his next run at an Olympic Games, which will be Paris 2024.

“It’s been hard for everyone, for every sport out there,” said Peaty of the tumultuous preparation around the globe in light of the coronavirus pandemic.

“It’s been very very tiring. I think what’s next is celebrating and having what Mel [Marshall] and me call a forced rest, where we’re not allowed to touch the water for a month now.”

Already looking forward to what lay ahead for the 26-year-old world record holder, the Loughborough man says, “It’s going to be a war of attrition over the next three years, we’ve got three major championships next season and you’ll see people who are falling off, who to all the days through the ISL and World Cups, by the time they get to Paris.

“Mental health matters and it is about getting the balance right at that elite level.”

He continues, “The amount of time that has been taken away from me with my partner and my boy, I want to make that time up. I’m going to enjoy it, recover and I’m going to need all the energy I’ve got and all the downtime.”

This calls into question Peaty’s participation in the International Swimming League Season 3, which kicks off on August 26th. Peaty was only rendered to his London Roar squad of the past two years via fan vote, which, in light of this post-Olympics break, sheds light on why he wasn’t retained as a protected athlete.

We’ve already seen one post-Olympic withdrawal from the ISL and expect more in the coming days as athletes digest their summer schedules and develop fall plans.

For any Olympians, this will be the best opportunity for a break before jumping into a hectic three-year -period before Paris has been condensed from the usual four by the Tokyo delay.

Below is a quick-hit list of competitions slate for 2022, condensed due to the coronavirus pandemic and resulting Olympic delay:

  • 2022 FINA World Aquatics Championships – Fukuoka, Japan – May 13th-29th
  • 2022 Commonwealth Games – Birmingham, England – July 27th-August 7th, 2022
  • 2022 LEN European Aquatics Championships – Rome, Italy – August 11th-21st, 2022
  • 2022 Jr. Pan Pacific Swimming Championships – Location and Dates TBD, usually August
  • 2022 Asian Games – Hangzhou, China – September 10th-25th, 2022
  • 2022 World Short Course Swimming Championships – Kazan, Russia* – Dates TBD, Usually in December

We’ve reached out to Peaty for confirmation this means he’s out of the ISL season 3 and will update accordingly.

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1 year ago

It has just been announced Peaty will be a contestant on BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing

1 year ago

Can’t blame a man and a young father who wants to enjoy time with his family

Reply to  Luigi
1 year ago

Fully agree.

Brings up a bigger conversation, though, about the future of swimming, and whether there’s actually enough room in the schedule for ISL. It’s starting to feel like something has to go, ya know?

Reply to  Braden Keith
1 year ago

But for the non-peatys of the sport, the ones without the big sponsors, they will still need the supposed money from the ISL to help continuing to train towards the next games, which won’t succeed if none of the big names show up. It’s a catch-22, if the pros wanted a pro league they have to show. That’s the only way the ISL works. People don’t want to see whos the fastest women’s 50 freestyler at ISL champs if Manuel, Campbell, Sarah, Emma, Blume etc aren’t there(hypothetical, know the Europeans wouldn’t miss it), so hopefully the ISL finds a fluid way to always schedule their meets when the big dogs show & pay them, or the league won’t last.

Last edited 1 year ago by Ragnar
Reply to  Ragnar
1 year ago

Also not as much related but there’s a lot of young rising fast talent in Europe right now and some one like David Popovici seems like he is going to use the momentum from this year to do what Michael did after the 2000 Olympics. Except David is diving head first into the ISL.

1 year ago

good, he won’t burn out

There's no doubt that he's tightening up
1 year ago


Peaty been reading the wrong comment section apparently. For once the SwimSwam comments aren’t the biggest sh*tshow!

But a sobering reminder that we internet nerds can have a negative impact on athletes…

Last edited 1 year ago by There's no doubt that he's tightening up

I agree with him that the crap athletes take on the internet often goes too far. See: England after the Euro final.

But, athletes are going to begin to weaponize “mental health” to pretend like they’re beyond criticism. If they win that battle, it’s going to be self-defeating, because if people can’t criticize athletes, they’re going to lose interest in sport. You can hate that all you want, but it’s true.

Maybe the athletes know that and are just using this because they like the feeling of sympathy. Maybe they don’t yet realize that. The end of sports might be closer than they think.

I hope we can find a balance where the criticism, especially the personal criticism, can be… Read more »

Reply to  swimapologist
1 year ago

Please provide examples of “fair” criticism athletes aren’t coping well with. Also, do you really think athletes are like “Wow I want some sympathy. I’m going to discuss my mental health and open myself up to criticism from a bunch of keyboard warriors (like yourself) who will call me weak just to get some sympathy.” That’s ludicrous.
Watch the documentary The Weight of Gold. Olympians have killed themselves because no one cared about their mental health. Michael Phelps is very lucky to be alive considering his substance abuse and DUIs. Do we really want to go back to that?

Casas 100 back gold in Fukuoka
1 year ago

Let the swimmers rest.
Even as a fan I’m exhausted after this whole week.

Gogo bibi
1 year ago

I will never understand this schedule of ISL season 3 , 3 weeks after the olympics really? And you except the top swimmers gold medallist to go? I think if they kept it in October which is right in the middle of OG and WC , they will have everyone even MA. Lol

1 year ago

He’s gonna go raise his kid, mad respect

Scotty P
1 year ago

This guy is the undisputed best 100 Breaststroker in the world, everyone who races him knows they are racing for second.

He deserves a break.

Reply to  Scotty P
1 year ago

Just because he is the best in the world, you think he deserves more of a break than someone who was 5th? All elite athletes deserve a good break…physically and mentally! Just like one’s success as a person shouldn’t be defined by records or medals, their breaks shouldn’t be determined by the medals or records.

About Retta Race

Retta Race

Former Masters swimmer and coach Loretta (Retta) thrives on a non-stop but productive schedule. Nowadays, that includes having just earned her MBA while working full-time in IT while owning French 75 Boutique while also providing swimming insight for BBC.

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