In the fourth of our series on the athletes that inspire our swimmers is Ben Proud.
Ben became the first person ever to win World, European and Commonwealth swimming titles in the same year - doing it in the space of two months, as 2022 provided him with his most successful year to date. Ben specialises in sprint freestyle and butterfly races, specifically the 50-metre distance in both.
Away from national duties, Proud currently represents Energy Standard in the International Swimming League.
He holds two British national records, as well as being a double Commonwealth Games champion in both the 50 m butterfly (2014 and 2022) and 50 m freestyle (2014 and 2018) events.

Born: 21st September 1994
British, European & World Champion

Nationality: British
Height: 1.81m Education: University of St Mark & St John
Current team: Great Britain

Ben was born in London on 21 September 1994.
His parents moved to Malaysia when he was five months old, and he grew up in Damansara, Kuala Lumpur. He has a brother, Oliver. He attended the Alice Smith School from kindergarten until year 12 and it was there he competed for the school swimming team and was trained by Francis Kiu, a professional Malaysian swimmer. The school swimming team was called KLASS Torpedoes, representing them at many international swim meets. He swam at the Malaysian Open, winning the 50 m butterfly and placing second in the 50 m freestyle. His many swim meets across Southeast Asia included the Flying Fish meet in Phuket, Thailand.

In 2011, when he was 16, he returned to England to pursue swimming as a career, and joined Plymouth College as a swimming scholar.
In 2014, still only 19 years old, Ben won his first senior international medals, claiming the 50m Freestyle and 50m Butterfly double on his Commonwealth debut for England at Glasgow 2014, before adding 50m Butterfly bronze and Men's 4x100m Medley Relay gold for Great Britain at his maiden European Championships the following month.

Did you know?
In 2023, he won the gold medal at the 2023 British Swimming Championships in the 50 metres freestyle. It was the fifth time that he had won the 50 metres event. He was also denied a seventh 50 metres butterfly title by Jacob Peters.
Ben was coached by Jon Rudd at the Plymouth Leander Swimming Programme in England, before he moved to train at the Energy Standard International Swim Club in Turkey in 2017.

Find out more about Ben Proud on the British Swimming Website below;