Olympic Champion Katie Ledecky Heads To Florida To Train Under Anthony Nesty

Seven-time Olympic gold medalist Katie Ledecky is headed east to train at the University of Florida, she announced on Instagram Wednesday morning.

Ledecky says she will train under Florida head coach Anthony Nesty and the “outstanding mid-distance and distance training group there” in preparation for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.

Ledecky has been training at Stanford University under coach Greg Meehan since beginning her freshman season of college there in 2016.

Ledecky wrote the following on Instagram, adding that being closer to family was a factor in her decision:

“Stanford has been my second home for the last five years. It will always have a special place in my heart. Having completed my college degree this year, I am moving east to be closer to home and family.

I’ve decided to train at the University of Florida with Coach Anthony Nesty and the outstanding mid-distance and distance training group there. I’m looking forward to the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead in the next phase of my swimming career.

My years at Stanford have been nothing short of incredible. I’m so grateful for my coach Greg Meehan, as well as my teammates, professors, friends and everyone in the larger Palo Alto/Menlo Park area who have supported me through these years.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Katie Ledecky (@katieledecky)

Ledecky will also serve as a volunteer assistant coach with the program. It’s not uncommon for active Olympians to join coaching staffs as volunteer assistants, as this allows them greater latitude to travel and train with teams that would not necessarily be afforded to them as just a post-graduate trainee.

Being able to tout arguably the greatest female swimmer of all-time as a member of your coaching staff also helps substantially with recruiting. It also allows the athletics department to pay for their travel.

The 24-year-old Bethesda, Md., native completed her bachelor of arts degree in psychology at Stanford this year. She was an eight-time NCAA champion, competing for the Cardinal for two seasons before turning professional in March of 2018.

“I’m excited to be a part of the University of Florida’s world-class swimming and diving program and train for the 2024 Olympics with Coach Anthony Nesty, and the top-tier mid-distance and distance training group,” Ledecky said in a University of Florida press release.

“My years at Stanford, both academically and athletically, were nothing short of incredible and I’m looking forward to the opportunity and challenges that lie ahead in Gainesville.”

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Huh
1 month ago

Smart move! Lets goooo

Go Katie
1 month ago

Did not see this one coming

FLYNN
1 month ago

Good call, the work he’s done with their freestylers in just a couple of years is very impressive. Seems he doesn’t employ a pure grind-it-out style either, which is helpful for older swimmers.

applesandoranges
1 month ago

SWEET!!!!!! She’ll be back chasing the boys, like she did when she swam with her pre-college club coach.

Swimgeek
Reply to  applesandoranges
1 month ago

Or Vice versa 😉 – but, yes, agreed – she needs elite male training partners and who better than Kieran Smith and Bobby Finke?

James Beam
Reply to  Swimgeek
1 month ago

Oh to be a fly on the wall watching those distance practices between Finke and Katie….

Meeeeee
Reply to  applesandoranges
1 month ago

i was thinking the same. She seemed to thrive on that. Seems i recall her doing an American record time in an event but being upset that one of the NCAP guys had gone faster. Anyways, i think this move is smart. She is at a point of needing something different to make gains.

Max C
Reply to  applesandoranges
1 month ago

That was my thought too – I remember in the swimswam p&p, she was training with the guys (Trust Sweetser?). Should be a good move for her.

Last edited 1 month ago by Max C
Coach Chackett
1 month ago

Updated location. Training with the Gators.

swammer2009
1 month ago

Wow – I didn’t expect to open SwimSwam this morning with this type of news. Big move for, KL! Congrats!

This should have an extremely positive impact on the UF team as well.

GowdyRaines
1 month ago

And now the Stanford exodus will begin.

Not-So-Silent Observer
Reply to  GowdyRaines
1 month ago

I agree. Nothing against Meehan, but I have felt that recently he’s not been able to progress his pros outside the NCAA format. He mostly benefits from getting top talent that was always destined to do amazing things and did not necessarily need him to get to those heights.

Last edited 1 month ago by Not-So-Silent Observer
whever
Reply to  GowdyRaines
1 month ago

The Stanford diploma is tempting though.

HJones
Reply to  whever
1 month ago

People would kidding themselves if they don’t think 90% of the reason why top recruits, including Ledecky, pick Stanford is because of that degree. Yes, they also have a very good coaching staff and system, but it isn’t something that will/can work for everyone, and many of those aforementioned elite recruits don’t actually take the time to consider whether or not the swimming program is the best fit for them. It can end up working for some, but more often than not, top recruits that go there don’t pan out, and you also would be kidding yourself if you don’t think this is the case.

You can argue whether or not going to Stanford “worked” for KL, but I’d… Read more »

Not-So-Silent Observer
Reply to  HJones
1 month ago

There is also something to be said about just having the right training partners. Ella and Brooke both benefited from having Ledecky in the pool with them to train against.

I would eat my cap to go to an alternate reality and see if their careers would of turned out the same had they not trained with Ledecky. Leaving all their progress (and regressions) solely in the hands of Meehan and his staff.

Plus, whatever happened to all their other top recruits… Who have essentially stagnated, regressed or hardly lived up to their potential since arriving at the farm: Zoe Bartel, Allie Raab, Nordmann, Taylor Ruck, etc

Stanford isn’t know for developing swimmers, it’s known for its legacy and ability… Read more »

NadadeNada
Reply to  Not-So-Silent Observer
1 month ago

Who would you say is well known to develop faster swimmers, then?

Not-So-Silent Observer
Reply to  NadadeNada
1 month ago

Countless coaches with proven track records of success with developing star and diamond in the rough swimmers, like Greg Troy, Todd Desorbo, Nesty, Halloway, Eddie Reese, Bernadino, Marsh, Don Easterling…

The list goes on

Coach
Reply to  Not-So-Silent Observer
1 month ago

You have to add Steve Bultman to your list of developing diamonds in the rough. He is one of the best in the business.

Admin
Reply to  Coach
1 month ago

He sure is. I just keep wishing he’d figure out how to land a big-time recruiting class to see what he could do with them, but A&M for years finished top 4 at NCAAs with a bunch of swimmers that nobody had heard of nationally coming out of high school.

VABeach
Reply to  GowdyRaines
1 month ago

I wouldn’t count on that happening. Read what Katie said…. Good time for a change for her as Florida has the best distance program going.

Stanford is in great hands with Greg and Tracey-two of the best coaches and people in the sport.

usaswimerror
Reply to  GowdyRaines
1 month ago

Still picking up the best recruiting classes.

HJones
Reply to  usaswimerror
1 month ago

You don’t think that has anything to do with the fact that Stanford is generally considered one of the top 5 universities in the country? And of those 5, Stanford has the by far best athletic program, as well as being the only one that can send out formal NLI that essentially guarantees admissions as long as you are anything near an average student?

frug
1 month ago

So she’s taking her talents to Gainesville? Seems like like a good fit actually.

About James Sutherland

James Sutherland

James swam five years at Laurentian University in Sudbury, Ontario, specializing in the 200 free, back and IM. He finished up his collegiate swimming career in 2018, graduating with a bachelor's degree in economics. In 2019 he completed his graduate degree in sports journalism. Prior to going to Laurentian, James swam …

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