Short Course Worlds Gold Medalist Dakota Luther Announces Retirement

Dakota Luther announced her retirement on Thursday after the conclusion of the women’s 200 butterfly at the 2024 U.S. Olympic Team Trials.

Luther couldn’t quite match her entry time in the final, but she swam a strong race to take 5th. She was one of only three athletes in that final to descend her final 100, splitting 34.10/33.69 for an overall time of 2:08.63.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Dakota Luther (@dakotaluther)

God is good!! 🤗

I promised myself a long time ago that I would walk away from swimming still in-love with the sport. I am happy to say that I have kept that promise & that 200 fly will be my final race. Although it wasn’t the fairytale ending that I dreamed about, throughout this pursuit of excellence I have gained so much more. And I would do (almost) all of it over again in a heartbeat.

To all of those that were a part of my journey & supported me through the many ups & downs, it has meant the world to me. I treasure the relationships, experiences, and places that I got to see the most. It is ultimately what made it all worth it in the end.

I am not sure what is next for me just yet, but I know it will be great! 🩵

Luther has been one of the U.S.’s top 200 fly specialists since 2017 when she earned her first Worlds berth. At that meet, she earned a semifinals berth but didn’t advance further. Since then, she has earned gold medals in the 200 fly from the 2019 World University Games, the 2022 Short Course World Championships, and the 2023 Pan American Games.

Luther swam four years for the Georgia Bulldogs, recording back-to-back SEC titles in the 200 fly in 2020 and 2021. Luther’s highest NCAA finish also came in 2021, where she finished 3rd overall. Luther then decided to return home to Texas and joined the Longhorns’ for her Covid fifth-year of eligibility in the 2022-23 season. There, she joined a deep butterfly group including Kelly Pash and Emma Sticklen, who had finished 4th and 7th in that 2021 NCAA final.

Her teammates Pash and Sticklen were also swimming in the Trials final, a testament to the strength of the butterfly group in Texas.

Luther majored in Communication Studies at Georgia and earned a master’s in Kinesiology at the University of Texas.

In This Story

Leave a Reply

Notify of

oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Whitney Hedgepeth
29 days ago

I have absolutely loved every minute of watching you swim and race. I am so proud of you and all that you have accomplished. XO Mom

Whitney Hedgepeth
29 days ago

I have loved every moment of watching my girl race and swim. I am one super proud mom! XO

Pennsylvania Tuxedo
1 month ago

Congrats! Amazing career.

1 month ago

Really great career. Super consistent high level for many years. Best wishes!

The alpha dog
1 month ago

100% murican

1 month ago

Great girl. Had a great run. Now get on with your life, others should do the same.

I miss the ISL (go dawgs)
1 month ago

A DGD! She always was so persistent. Happy retirement!