2008 Triple Olympic Medal Winner Margaret Hoelzer was brought to Newport Sunday to conduct intensive training for Newport Swim Team members at the Newport Pool. Hoelzer competed in the 2008 Summer Olympic Games in Beijing, China, earning two silver medals; one for the 200 meter Backstroke and one for the 4 x 100 meter Medly relay. She also captured a Bronze medal for the 100 meter Backstroke.
She also captured the undivided attention of these young swimmers who hung on to her ever word as she conveyed swim techniques for the swim categories she excelled in at the Olympic Games.
For well over two hours, Hoelzer presented proper form and body rhythms and even demonstrated them herself. Her movement through the water can only be described as impressive, powerful, your eyes hardly knowing where Hoelzer’s body left off and the water began; her movements demonstrating great strength and grace as she appeared to glide through the water like a human fish. She made a huge impression on the kids and they threw themselves into the drills.
Afterwards, Hoelzer signed copies of her 2008 Olympic program for each swim team member and she posed for a picture with them holding one of her Olympic medals.
Hoelzer lives in Seattle where she still keeps her hand in swimming, but not to the same degree she has in the past. Instead, she is devoting her energies to Children’s Advocacy Centers throughout the country which helps abused children get the help they need to heal their physical or emotional wounds. Hoelzer herself says was abused as a child and that her advocacy work enhances her own sense of rising above her unfortunate circumstances and celebrating her Olympic victories with children all over the country, just as she did with the Newport Swim Team on Sunday. She said that she has also discovered that just about every Olympian competitor, including herself, as a child, met an Olympic competitor which sparked them to greatness. For her it was meeting three time Olympic swimming gold medalist Rowdy Gaines who is today an NBC and ESPN Olympic Games sportcaster. Hoelzer says to see and witness greatness in others is a powerful motivator. She said she hopes her time with the Newport Swim Team will put spark an “Olympic class idea” in the minds of these young swimmers.