Why 15 Year Old Swimmer Thomas Heilman Is Set Up For Long-term Success

15-year-old swimming phenom Thomas Heilman hit his taper at U.S. International Team Trials, qualifying for the Jr Pan Pacs U.S. Team in three events.  At Jr. Pan Pacs athletes can swim more events once they’ve made the team. Based on this interview it sounds like Heilman will compete daily in Hawaii, August 24-27.

After U.S. Team Trials Heilman took a few days off and started his long training cycle. Jr Pan Pacs, his first USA Swimming national team trip, is not until the end of August. Heilman will compete at both Jr Nationals and the Phillips 66 Summer Nationals in Irvine, CA as a tune-up.

In this interview we hear from Heilman’s coach, Cavalier Aquatics’ Gary Taylor, and we hear from Heilman’s mom, Carrie, for insight into the family dynamic and his support at home.  After nearly four decades of following this sport closely, Heilman’s setup well for success. Swimming lives on the shoulder’s of its parents, and when parents allow their kids to take ownership and not push them, that’s a winning combination.

Follow Thomas Heilman on Instagram here.  

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This is a Gold Medal Media production presented by SwimOutlet.com. Host Gold Medal Mel Stewart is a 3-time Olympic medalist and the co-founder of SwimSwam.com, a Swimming News website.

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A swimmer
2 months ago

OMG how is Heilman so fast!? The guy has really shown himself in the big leagues,
I hope he reaches his goals! ( He really deserves it )

5 months ago

…And I get to go to his school! He’s really kind and genuine irl too 🙂

A swimmer
Reply to  SHAW
2 months ago

A good guy, to be sure

7 months ago

I think it’s awesome that his SwimCloud page lists his best 25Y free time. It’s 15.22, BTW. 11/8/2014

Gold Medal Mel
Reply to  PBJSwimming
7 months ago

Ha! Agreed

7 months ago

I wish all my parents had been like Heilman’s mother when I was coaching age group.

Reply to  Oldmanswimmer
7 months ago

unfortunately many of us are a nightmare for coaches

7 months ago

let me dig deeper and with my completely incompetent background in the subject, recap:

  1. he is young
  2. he is fast
  3. that’s a good start. THE END
Reply to  Gold Medal Mel Stewart
7 months ago

Júnior world level meets are relatively new, I cant try and put guys like Michael Phelps and Ian Thorpe in this scenario…

Nowadays I think only Popovici gets somewhere close to it.

Gold Medal Mel
Reply to  Olympian
7 months ago

There have always been international team trips, going back 50 years, but, correct, not on a global stage.

Go Kamminga Go
Reply to  NB1
7 months ago

Thanks for your recap! Saved me time from clicking the vid.

Sun Yang's Mom
7 months ago

This kid is a real talent. But having all these articles and hype about him is a lot of pressure. Hope that he can continue swimming because he likes it not because there is an expectation for him to be the next dressel or something.

About Gold Medal Mel Stewart

Gold Medal Mel Stewart

MEL STEWART Jr., aka Gold Medal Mel, won three Olympic medals at the 1992 Olympic Games. Mel's best event was the 200 butterfly. He is a former World, American, and NCAA Record holder in the 200 butterfly. As a writer/producer and sports columnist, Mel has contributed to Yahoo Sports, Universal Sports, …

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