Michael Phelps Has 'No Desire' to Swim Professionally Again, but Might If His Kids Ask Him to
Michael Phelps Instagram
Michael Phelps Instagram Michael Phelps and son Boomer
Michael Phelps retired from professional swimming after the 2016 Summer Olympics, but there are three people who could persuade him to return to the pool: his kids!
The 23-time Olympic gold medalist, 36, revealed during a conversation with Today co-hosts Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb on Monday whether or not he saw himself getting back into the sport, saying, LA, "(Los Angeles will be the event Align 2028.)
"I'm not coming back now - have no ideas!" he quickly clarified into the camera. "I dont know. I don't feel like going into the water now.
When his sons - Maverick Nicolas, 22 months, Beckett Richard, 3, and Boomer Robert, 5 - "at some point ask why I don't compete, we'll see what the answer is," Phelps teased with a laugh.
"Everything for my children," added the athlete, who is in Tokyo for the current Games to support Team USA's swimmers.
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Incredible photos from the Summer Olympics over the years
Adam Pretty / Getty Images Michael Phelps at the 2016 Summer Olympics
RELATED: Allison Schmitt Says Michael Phelps is a "huge support system" for her and Team USA in Tokyo
Despite his own career as the most decorated Olympian of all time, Phelps has previously said he would not push his children into professional swimming.
"Nicole and I have had so many conversations about it, and I think the biggest thing is that they find their own way and their own way to go," he said on Today in April 2018.
"We're always there to help and support and answer questions, but I don't want to force them to do something they don't want to do," he added. "That's how my mother was with me, and I'm eternally grateful for that."
But that doesn't mean Phelps didn't have his own secret hopes! "I'll be a greedy dad and say I'd rather see him play champions on Sunday," he joked.
RELATED VIDEO: Michael Phelps on Being a Father - and How the Family is helping him through his darkest days
Phelps, who has been open about his struggles with depression over the years, told PEOPLE earlier this month that his family is a big part of helping him through dark days as well as sticking to a routine.
"Depression is something that will always be a part of my life - it's a part of me," said the athlete whose Michael Phelps Foundation offers wellness programs to youth around the world. "It's my job to keep learning and understanding why I am who I am."
He sticks to his routine with the same discipline with which he won 23 Olympic gold medals: daily training, at least seven and a half hours of sleep every night and drinking plenty of water.
"All of these little things are part of the equation," Phelps said. "There's only so much we can control in this world, so I want to be up there as well as I can so I can be the best father, the best husband, the hardest worker. I want to give myself the chance." . "
To learn more about all of the Olympic hopefuls, visit TeamUSA.org. The Tokyo Olympics kicked off July 23 on NBC.
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