Michael Phelps retired once in 2012, but came back 4 years later to compete in the 2016 Rio Olympics. According to Phelps, he wanted to officially end his swimming career on a good note in Rio.
Michael Phelps felt that his performance in the 2012 London Games wasn't his best, which is why he decided to quit after proving to be the best in Rio.
Phelps wanted to continue building a family with his fiancee and 3-month-old son. He especially doesn't want to miss seeing his son growing older.
Being a swimmer for almost his entire life, Phelps wanted to try out something different. According to Phelps, it's not the end of a career, but the start of a new journey.
At the age of 31, Phelps' performance was starting to lose power, which was why it was time for him to retire after a long successful career.
Phelps decided to retire after Rio Olympics because he didn't want to risk sabotaging his legacy if he competes in the next Olympics.
Following a DUI and a visit to rehab in 2014, Phelps changed his life around and made amends with his family and friends. Phelps wanted to retire while he still maintained a good reputation, which is why he waited until everything was back in order before retiring for good.
'The Michael Phelps Foundation’s IM program', works on providing 16,000 children up till now with water-safety courses, recreational activities, swim training and wellness education. Phelps' retirement will allow him to have the time to travel and help these kids personally.
Michael Phelps retired because he already achieved the title of a legend, winning 28 medals, 23 of which are gold. Phelps is now considered the best male swimmer in the world.