"In most sports they have a physical effect on your performance, in swimming only psychological. If you worry about what your rival is doing, you take your mind off what you are doing and so fail to concentrate on your performance."
Bachrach, great Chicago coach of the 20's
"In training everyone focuses on 90% physical and 10% mental, but in the races its 90% mental because there's very little that separates us physically at the elite level".
"People ask me 'what was going through your mind in the race?' and I don't know. I try and ...let my body do what it knows".
"I wouldn't say anything is impossible. I think that everything is possible as long as you put your mind to it and put the work and time into it".
"When I go out and race, I'm not trying to beat opponents, I'm trying to beat what I have done ... to beat myself, basically. People find that hard to believe because we've had such a bias to always strive to win things. If you win something and you haven't put everything into it, you haven't actually achieved anything at all. When you've had to work hard for something and you've got the best you can out of yourself on that given day, that's where you get satisfaction from."
"I have been visualizing myself every night for the past four years standing on the podium having the gold placed around my neck."
"Before the (Olympic) trials I was doing a lot of relaxing exercises and visualization. And I think that that helped me to get a feel of what it was gonna be like when I got there. I knew that I had done everything that I could to get ready for that meet, both physically and mentally".
"The water is your friend.....you don't have to fight with water, just share the same spirit as the water, and it will help you move".
"I can't control what everyone else swims but if all goes well I know there are no limits."
"I am not going to allow myself not to perform well just because I don't feel well. I am bulletproof to the extent that a lot of things can be thrown at me, but it's about how much I am prepared to let them affect me".
"I can definitely take more off my world record - a lot more. I have no doubt about that. I'm by no means putting pressure on myself, it's just the belief I have in myself......I'm not going to limit myself by nominating times or anything like that. I never thought I'd do 14:34 and I did. I thought I'd maybe do 14:38 or 14:39 that day, and I went nearly five seconds quicker so I don't want to limit the possibilities". Grant Hackett
"Body does what mind prefers." Lenny Krayzelburg
"Mainly, I like to have fun. Swimming is all about having fun, and I am firm believer that you should keep swimming as long as you are having fun, but I can say that it becomes much more fun as you get older and learn more about the sport, life, and especially more about yourself".
"For myself, losing is not coming second. It's getting out of the water knowing you could have done better. For myself, I have won every race I've been in".
"While I'm swimming, I sing songs in my mind."
"I enjoyed every bit of my swimming career. I think that's the most important advice — to enjoy what you do".
Summer Sanders 1992 double gold medallist
"Any time you can get up there and scare a few people, throw up some decent times, it builds up your confidence and also sends a message to other people."
Olympic silver medallist Marianne Limpert
"Susie had no talent whatsoever. She's a little person who couldn't even make a final at a state meet - coming and showing the world that on sheer guts and determination you can do anything you want!"
Susie Maroney's coach Dick Caine after her 200 kilometre marathon swim from Mexico to Cuba