Mackenzie Padington, Citing Physical and Mental Health, Announces Retirement

Mackenzie Padington; Photo Courtesy: Vaughn Ridley/Swimming Canada

Canadian swimmer Mackenzie Padington announced her retirement from swimming at age 21 Friday, citing challenges to her physical and mental health.

Padington made the announcement on Instagram.

From the post:

There are many reasons as to why I’m hanging up my cap and goggles. The first reason is my mental health. My mental health has been deteriorating at a steady rate and with all that has happened in the past year I know that it’s time that I step away from the pool.

Furthermore my body has been battling injuries for years now, nothing has seemed to help the process of getting my body into the shape I need it to be. Even with feeling great last year in the water my body would rely on constant treatment just to get through a week full of workouts.

Padington has had a rougher 2020 than most. In January, she announced that she wouldn’t return to the University of Minnesota, where she was taking an Olympic redshirt for her junior campaign. Later that month, she signaled her intention to transfer to NC State for the 2020-21 season, but that never came about. By May, she elected to stay in Canada and train with the High Performance Center in Vancouver, near her hometown of Campbell River, British Columbia.

All those changes have proven to be too much, leading to her stepping away.

Padington was a five-time All-American at Minnesota, setting a school record in the 800 free relay as a freshman in 2018 and finishing third at the 2019 NCAA Championships in both the 500 free and 1,650 free.

Internationally, Padington earned a bronze medal in the 800 free relay at the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships. She finished 18th in the 800 free and 24th in the 400 free at the 2019 World Championships. She won the 400, 800 and 1,500 free at Canadian Trials in 2019 and was a favorite to make the team for the Tokyo Olympics in some form for the burgeoning Canadian squad.

1 comment

  1. Leigh Collins

    No shame in her game. Once a swimmer always a swimmer.

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