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INTERNATIONAL PARALYMPIC COMMITTEE
Imagen
A swimmer celebrating his gold medal in the water, raising one arm.

Oliver Hynd

Swimming
3
2
1

Like his now retired older brother Sam, Ollie has muscular dystrophy, but does not let that stop him from setting benchmarks in the pool with every event he participates in.

Hynd's first major international meet was the 2011 IPC Swimming European Championships in Berlin, Germany, and he returned at the 2014 Euros in Eindhoven to successfully defend his 200m individual medley SM8 title and win the 400m freestyle S8. He also swam to a silver and bronze in Berlin.

He stormed to gold at London 2012 and remembers sharing the podium with his brother as one of his greatest moments.

In 2013, Hynd claimed double gold at his first World Championships in Montreal, Canada, in 200m individual medley and 400m freestyle. That was in addition to being handed an MBE from the Queen of Great Britain.

In 2014 Hynd set a new world mark in the 200m freestyle. But that was not the record he really had his eye on.

In one of the most memorable moments of the 2015 IPC Swimming World Championships in Glasgow, Great Britain, Hynd finally broke his brother's five year old world record in the 400m freestyle. He went on to break it once again in July 2016, just two months before the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games, as well as picking up three more European titles earlier in the year.

The stage was set for Hynd to take glory in Brazil. And that he did. With two gold medals - both in world record times - Hynd claimed the 200m individual medley and 400m freestyle titles. In the 400m freestyle, he overcame China's defending champion Yinan Wang in a dominant display that left his competitors stunned.

His mother Helen is one of his biggest fans and carried the Paralympic torch for London 2012.

Biography

Impairment information

Type of Impairment
Impaired muscle power
Classification
S8, SB8, SM8

Further personal information

Residence
Kirkby, ENG
Occupation
Athlete
Languages
English

Sport specific information

When and where did you begin this sport?
He began competing at age nine at the Nottinghamshire County Championships in England.
Why this sport?
He found he enjoyed the sport and was good at it.
Club / Team
Nova Centurion: Mansfield, ENG
Name of coach
Glenn Smith [club], GBR; Rob Aubry [national]

International debut

Year
2011
Competing for
Great Britain
Tournament
European Championships
Location
Berlin, GER

General interest

Nicknames
Ollie (Twitter profile, 23 Apr 2019)
Hobbies
Fashion. (Instagram profile, 22 Apr 2019)
Memorable sporting achievement
Breaking the SM8 400m freestyle record [set by his brother Sam] at the 2015 World Championships in Glasgow, Scotland, and winning gold in the SM8 200m individual medley at both the 2012 Paralympic Games in London, and the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, Scotland. (paralympic.org, 23 Jun 2016)
Most influential person in career
Coach Glenn Smith, his brother Sam. (guardian.co.uk, 05 Sep 2012; Athlete, 02 Sep 2012)
Hero / Idol
US swimmer Michael Phelps, British swimming coach Glenn Smith, US musician Jack Johnson. (paralympic.org, 24 May 2015)
Injuries
In March 2012 he broke his wrist at the British trials for the 2012 Paralympic Games. He recovered in time to participate at the Games. (paralympic.org, 23 Jun 2016; Athlete, 02 Sep 2012)
Superstitions / Rituals / Beliefs
He gets onto his starting block from the left side, and listens to the same song before he competes. (channel4.com, 01 Nov 2011)
Sporting philosophy / motto
"Always do your best. Control the controllables." (Athlete, 02 Sep 2012)
Awards and honours
In 2017 he received an honorary degree from Nottingham Trent University in England. (nottinghampost.com, 04 Jul 2017)

He was named Young Sportsperson of the Year of 2014 at the Nottingham Post Sports Awards in England. (nottinghampost.com, 08 Nov 2014)

In 2013 he was appointed Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire [MBE]. (oliverhynd.co.uk, 19 Feb 2013)

At the 2012 Nottinghamshire Sports Awards, he was named winner in the Achievement of the Year category. (nottinghamshire.gov.uk, 14 Nov 2012)
Famous relatives
His older brother Sam is a former international Para swimmer who won gold at the 2008 Paralympic Games in Beijing and the world championships in 2009. Both brothers also won medals at the 2012 Paralympic Games in London. (chad.co.uk, 17 Mar 2015)
Ambitions
To win gold medals at the 2020 Paralympic Games in Tokyo. (swimswam.com, 30 Jun 2018; bbc.co.uk, 31 Mar 2017)
Impairment
He has neuromuscular myopathy, a degenerative condition that weakens the muscles in his legs. (guardian.co.uk, 05 Sep 2012; dailymail.co.uk, 28 Aug 2012)
Other information
RE-CLASSIFICATION STRUGGLES
He had been competing in the S8 class since 2011, but in March 2018 he was reclassified to S9 by the International Paralympic Committee [IPC], which caused him to withdraw from the 2018 Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast, QLD, Australia. He appealed the decision and was briefly able to return to S8, but the reclassification was ultimately upheld and he had to return to S9. In April 2019 he described the previous year as "the worst of [his] life" and said he considered quitting the sport. "I came really close to quitting swimming. There were days I didn't want to get out of bed. Doing anything was a real challenge and over the last year I have had to find myself and get that self-belief back." (bbc.com, 24 Apr 2019; swimswam.com, 30 Jun 2018; bbc.com, 23 Mar 2018)

HUNGRY FOR MEDALS
He was not satisfied with his overall medal tally at the 2016 Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, despite winning two gold medals and one silver. "My goal was three gold and five medals, but I got a silver and came fourth twice so it wasn't exactly what I was hoping for. The goalposts haven't really changed going forward. It's just about setting goals that are exciting, that's what I want to do in Tokyo [2020 Paralympic Games]." (bbc.co.uk, 31 Mar 2017)

Results

Unit Date Rank
London 2012 Paralympic Games (London, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m Butterfly S8 Heat 3 2012-08-30 4
Men's 400 m Freestyle S8 Final Round 2012-08-31 2
Men's 400 m Freestyle S8 Heat 2 2012-08-31 2
Men's 100 m Backstroke S8 Final Round 2012-09-04 3
Men's 100 m Backstroke S8 Heat 2 2012-09-04 3
Men's 200 m Individual Medley SM8 Heat 3 2012-09-05 1
Men's 200 m Individual Medley SM8 Final Round 2012-09-05 1
2013 IPC Swimming World Championships (Montreal, Canada)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 100 m Backstroke S8 Heat 2 2013-08-12 3
Men's 100 m Backstroke S8 Final 1 2013-08-12 3
Men's 200 m Individual Medley SM8 Final 1 2013-08-13 1
Men's 200 m Individual Medley SM8 Heat 2 2013-08-13 1
Men's 400 m Freestyle S8 Final 1 2013-08-14 1
Men's 400 m Freestyle S8 Heat 1 2013-08-14 1
Men's 4x100 m Medley 34pts Final 1 2013-08-18 9999
2015 IPC Swimming World Championships (Glasgow, Great Britain)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 200 m Individual Medley SM8 Final 1 2015-07-15 1
Men's 200 m Individual Medley SM8 Heat 2 2015-07-15 1
Men's 400 m Freestyle S8 Heat 2 2015-07-17 1
Men's 400 m Freestyle S8 Final 1 2015-07-17 1
Men's 100 m Backstroke S8 Heat 2 2015-07-18 3
Men's 100 m Backstroke S8 Final 1 2015-07-18 3
Rio 2016 Paralympic Games (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
Event Medal Unit Date Rank
Men's 400 m Freestyle S8 Final Round 2016-09-08 1
Men's 400 m Freestyle S8 Heat 2 2016-09-08 1
Men's 100 m Freestyle S8 Final Round 2016-09-11 4
Men's 100 m Freestyle S8 Heat 1 2016-09-11 3
Men's 100 m Backstroke S8 Heat 2 2016-09-13 1
Men's 100 m Backstroke S8 Final Round 2016-09-13 2
Men's 4x100 m Freestyle 34pts Final Round 2016-09-14 4
Men's 200 m Individual Medley SM8 Heat 2 2016-09-17 1
Men's 200 m Individual Medley SM8 Final Round 2016-09-17 1