Michael Phelps – Olympic Swimmer Has ADHD

Michael Phelps, the Olympic swimmer – who plans to win 8 Gold Medals at the Beijing Olympics – has ADHD.

He was diagnosed with ADHD when he was 9 years old. He used a combination of medication and behavioral therapy. After a few years, he was able to manage his ADHD without the medication.

Michael Phelp’s mother has shared details of his story in this news story. When you go there, click on the video on the top right to watch a video of a news story.

I wish Michael the best for the Olympics, and I appreciate his and his family’s openness about his condition. I think this will help a lot of people with ADHD to realize that they can succeed with their ADD or ADHD.

Dr. Kenny

[tags] Michael Phelps, Olympics, ADHD [/tags]

Comments

  1. Dr. Handelman,

    This is my spin on ADHD. I have been a student of psychology for years, and have had trouble holding down steady work over the years.

    I have never had an official diagnosis of ADHD. However since early childhood and grade school I have had all the symptoms

    I honestly believe that the problem is basic.

    (A) Nobody in the world of reality wants to grow up.
    (B) Nobody in the world of reality wants to grow older
    and
    (C) nobody in the world of reality wants to die.

    Little by little the world forces everyone to do (A)
    (which children and teenagers & adult children often don’t understand).

    The people that can stretch (A) out the longest get the most out of life, and are the brightest most successful people.

    Many confident people believe that age is just a number. Thus if they can not just stretch out (A) but also stretch out (B) for many years get places in life occupationally and socially and thus are much more motivated to and capable of avoiding the dreaded (C) that in civilized, free societies like America nobody forces you to do unless you do foolish things and under due process.

    From personal experience, and by studying the field of psychology, I believe that children often make their own decisions either consciously or unconsciously in their first eight years of life, before they know anything about the world around them as to whether or not they want to eventually pull away from parents, find their own direction in life and build their future.

    This problem should be addressed in the schools, and labeling kids with ADHD and getting all sorts of medical doctors involved with prescribing Ritalin etc. to kids is not helpful in helping to alleviate this problem.

    The day camps and the schools teach age related conformity with all sorts of rudimentary social programs, sporting activities, exams, IQ tests etc. But true intelligence and abilty to function day to day, long term (and self motivation) is NOT AGE RELATED, even in kids growing up. IT IS INBORN (genetics).

    They are giving Ritalin to the kids in school for after haphazadly diagnosing ADHD, but people like me over the years, have never had the HD, only the AD.

    Why is this? Because the vast majority of kids especially in the decade predating adolescence don’t understand what life is all about, and are babied in the educational system prior to middle school. Then when they get to middle school, big problems tend to arise, time goes quicker and as parents get older, (and the peers of ADHD sufferers and kids from younger generations) are able to do more, earn more and hold more of what they earn the kids labeled with ADHD wind up being able to do less, earn less and face less.

    There are many successful celebrities with ADHD. Michael Phelps is one. I read that, (though I can’t confirm this) that entertainers Nick Carter and Paris Hilton have the same problem. But when you pull out of the school system into your twenties and beyond, what can ultimately cause major problems is not the HD. It’s the AD.

    Because with the HD, you may need the right medications and counseling to find a focus and settle yourself down.

    If your major problem is the AD, then deep down you have major trouble keeping your head in reality, and may WANT things, but also want others to look after you.

    Thus you will have trouble:
    1) keeping focused, 2) motivating yourself long term

    3) holding down a job 4) dealing with life’s twists and turns and
    major losses in life

    5) understanding what life is all about

    6) what growing up is all about

    7) human development

    8) the aging process,

    9) understanding daily responsibility
    Also:
    10) be inclined to have the wrong reactions at the wrong times when treating you the way you want to be treated,

    11) have the inability to understand and cope with different types of stress, and the inability to understand and cope with different types of fear.

    Certainly world class athletes like Michael Phelps have been able to understand many different types of fear and stress, and have saw and pulled through them to be able to earn more than a half dozen Olympic swimming gold medals. My guess is that he may have had childhood issues that he corrected long before he entered his first Olympics eight years ago.

    Looking back at my past, I have a major problem with educators that sit small children on wooden chairs and little desks all day long to try to enforce a sheltered environment of basic arithmetic and basic reading upon them, and start playing around with ADHD medications like Ritalin when the kids start getting nervous and can’t keep focused. If the kids are young and their bodies are developing they SHOULD be moving around in a structured way of course (not hitting, menacing, taunting or bullying each other).

    Why should kids be forced to sit around? They’re not the heads of a corporation with major responsibilities for 5,000 people. They haven’t done anything productive yet.

    In fact, the way the world is today in 2008, which it has been atleast since the 1970′s when I was in the early primary grades, students are taught to sit in school- long term, especially in the primary grades with no true purpose for being there, and if God forbid a decade and a half of their lives were to pass by and they are now in the work force, many of them can’t keep up.

    1) Many have no sense of who they are as individuals

    2) No sense how to self motivate and pace themselves through a long day of work,

    3) Often can’t keep focused- long term- when being taught new technology,

    4) Can’t multitask

    5) Have trouble keeping their cool under high stress and eustress

    6) Have trouble separating family issues from responsibilities at work

    7) Have trouble prioritizing values and responsibilities based on proper social relationships
    (understanding who is currently in authority and how much true authority the people have over them)

    8)do not have a proper understanding of how businesses work, how they stay in business, how they help you, and what they expect of you, and do not know who to confide it if something is troubling them.

    In today’s society children are not developed into the adult world at a young enough age. Things are done mostly for them, but also many things to them, and when the A.D. calendar we all life on forces kids a decade and a half to three decades into the future they can not function properly in larger society, and often even have difficulty taking responsibility for themselves and their own affairs, never mind earning an income, and children and adolescents diagnosed with things like ADHD are at the most risk, and later in life ADHD is like a diagnosis for the rich and successful. The ordinary adult with an ADHD past can eventually get other things like OCD, BiPolar, and the broad range of Schizo-disorders from Schizotypal to full blown Schizophrenia.

    In my opinion these problems can all begin with ADHD in childhood, and even though it may scare the hell out of parents with young children in a world of today with ADHD to look many years into their future, these co-morbid diagnosis for adults with ADHD in their past history is considered routine and social work programs are available to these people, however these conditions can throw a monkey wrench in the sufferers social and occupational development and success.

    At at the end, one way or another you will be responsible for your own
    destiny in life. ADHD maybe the first warning sign in the difficulty to accept true personal responsibility in life.

  2. Michael Phelps – Olympic Swimmer Has ADHD…

    He was diagnosed with ADHD when he was 9 years old. He used a combination of medication and behavioral therapy. After a few years, he was able to manage his ADHD without the medication….

  3. Michael Phelps – Olympic Swimmer Has ADHD…

    He was diagnosed with ADHD when he was 9 years old. He used a combination of medication and behavioral therapy. After a few years, he was able to manage his ADHD without the medication….

  4. Michael Phelps – Olympic Swimmer Has ADHD | ADD ADHD Blog.com…

    He was diagnosed with ADHD when he was 9 years old. He used a combination of medication and behavioral therapy. After a few years, he was able to manage his ADHD without the medication….

  5. Michael Phelps – Olympic Swimmer Has ADHD | ADD ADHD Blog.com…

    He was diagnosed with ADHD when he was 9 years old. He used a combination of medication and behavioral therapy. After a few years, he was able to manage his ADHD without the medication….

  6. I’ve read this before, but I didn’t see this from him, he always looks funny and sound, big smile. I think this guy.
    8 gold medals, many breaked records, that’s enough for the world to remember him.

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  8. Hyperfocus may be a strength in ball games which require great instinctual reaction and focus, but wow, the guy used it in swimming! Great.

    As for the psychologist above, what I have noticed is that once the ADD fog goes away, the world becomes much more simpler and clearer. You naturally feel more responsible. In the foggy state, your vision is corrupted in the sense that you are driven by meaningless stuff right before you because it is so stimulating.

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