Two-Time Spanish Olympian Duane da Rocha Retires at 31

Spanish swimmer Duane da Rocha has announced her retirement from competitive swimming. In an Instagram post on Thursday evening, the 31-year old posted “it’s been quite a journey, but it’s time to say goodbye.”

“There has been a lot of crying during the time that I was thinking about putting an end to it, and after deciding,” da Rocha continued. “Every time that I think that this stage of my life is over, my heart shrinks. I have so many memories of moments that I have enjoyed so much, as well as of the moments in which I have had a hard time and I have had to struggled to get back on track.

“Of all of them I can say that I have taken positive things and I have learned a lot, both personally and professionally.”

In the short term, da Rocha says that she’ll be organizing two swimming camps for this summer. “I want to convey that this sport is hard, but that you can enjoy it. I would like to show my experience and teach that you can work for a big goal,” she said.

After that, she says she’s going to pursue a career as a flight attendant.

Da Rocha, who was born in Brazil to a Spanish father and a Brazilian mother, was the 2014 European Champion (LCM) in the 200 backstroke. She represented Spain at both the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Games. Her best finish came in London in 2012, where she took 13th in the 200 back in 2:09.88, which at the time was only three-tenths from her lifetime best.

At the 2016 Olympic Games, she missed the semi-finals in the 200 back and took 15th in the 100.

Da Rocha also retires with 4 senior Spanish Records. 2 of those are in long course (200 back – 2:09.13, 400 medley relay – leadoff) and 2 are in short course (100 back – 57.70, 200 back – 2:03.32).

International Medal History:

  • World Short Course Championships – 1 bronze (2012 – 200 back)
  • European Aquatics Championships (LCM) – 1 gold (2012 – 200 back), 2 bronze (2010, 2012 – 200 back)
  • European Short Course Championships – 1 gold (2010 – 200 back), 1 silver (2011 – 200 back), 1 bronze (2010 – 100 back)
  • Mediterranean Games – 5 silvers (2018 – 50 back, 2018 – 400 medley relay, 2009 – 100 back, 2009 – 200 back, 2009 – 400 medley relay)


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About Braden Keith

Braden Keith

Braden Keith is the Editor-in-Chief and a co-founder of He first got his feet wet by building The Swimmers' Circle beginning in January 2010, and now comes to SwimSwam to use that experience and help build a new leader in the sport of swimming. Aside from his life on the InterWet, …

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