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AthleteSiberia to LA. Olympic swimmer. AMA

Apr 11th 2016 by OlympRusUs • 12 Questions • 336 Points

Hello Reddit! My name is Vladimir Morozov, I am an Olympic medalist 2012, three-time World Champion currently training for my second Olympic games for swimming. I've been told that I have a unique story and maybe should write a book about my experiences. Growing up in the depths of Siberia I lived with my extended family of 5 in a tiny 2 bedroom apartment, with a goal of one day becoming an Olympic Champion. By the time I was a teenager my mother's stable very small business was overrun by criminals of the dark 90's taking the last and all we had. At the age of 14 we both moved to Los Angeles, CA where we stay to this day. I came in as a freshman in high school (no English), got a full athletic scholarship to University of Southern California, turned professional after 3 years and now am a week away from my second Olympic Trials. If there is anything that captures your interest please ask.

Proof: https://m.imgur.com/uZuLElM

Here is some info and social platforms:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vladimir_Morozov_(swimmer)

http://instagram.com/v1adm

http://twitter.com/v1addy

Vladmorozov.com

---Thank you for all of your input. It's night time here. I will come back tomorrow to answer any more questions.

Q:

Hello Vladimir! I actually swam against you at PAC 12s in 2013, it was a great honor to be able to watch you swim. Your 50 free has always amazed me considering you are not the typical tall sprinter. How have you perfected your start and turn to the point were you almost come off a body length ahead?

A:

Hey there fellow sprinter! Thank you for the kind words. As I explained in a post above I learned how to use that momentum energy instead of slowing down and generating it again. My "short" height 6'1 gives an advantage in terms of explosiveness of the start and quickness on the turn. Sometimes you can turn your weaknesses into strengths.


Q:

What's up son!?!?! It's Cronan. Good luck at Trials man!

A:

Cronan! Thank you my man! Didn't expect to see you here.


Q:

Congrats man, I'm quite inspired by you. What's your diet looking like? How often do you drink alcohol. Also, ты говорит по-русскй?

Did I grammar right?

A:

Thank you! Always great to hear that my work inspires someone. I try to balance my protein/carb/fat intake and just eat healthy food in general. I'm not big for junk food or sweets so I'd pick a nice, juicy, rare steak over anything.

And да, я говорю по-русски :)


Q:

What's best for efficiency and speed for cross overs? An underwater breast stroke? Or dolphin kick?

A:

Underwater dolphin kick is the fastest way to swim of all so far. That is why we have a rule in place now that you cannot kick underwater for more than 15 meters off each wall. There was a great Russian Butterfly Olympic Champion Denis Pankratov who would swim most of his race underwater. Check him out: http://youtu.be/Zp2NTFjeXQQ


Q:

Hi Vlad, I was wondering what you think of USRPT. A lot of people say there are similarities between it and Coach Salo's practices but what are some differences that you think are important?

A:

It's hard to describe coach Salo's practices and his theories but he is much more than USRPT. He is a genious, one of the best in the world. We do more USRPT closer to the mid-end of the season but before that we do a solid block of high HR/lactate repetitive sets with short rest. It's the work that kills you and your speed but in the end produces the result imo.


Q:

Hi Vladimir. I'm a former USC swimmer myself. To maintain whatever shreds of online anonymity I have left, I won't say from when, but it was during the Mark Schubert era. (Not that I was that great anyway.)

Did you ever talk with Lenny Krayzelburg? And does he even come around much anymore? You and he may share some similarities in your early life, and he has credited the Russian community of Los Angeles in helping his transition after emigration. Did you find it hard to fit in? Did you have a support group from the Russian community as well?

Also, I think I may have just given away the relative time frame I swam for 'SC. Anyway, good luck to you, and fight on.

A:

Always glad to see another Trojan on here! Yes, I met Lenny the same year I moved to LA at some age group competition. We've talked a few times ever since and last time I saw him a few weeks ago at our pool. He still comes around once in awhile. I did not have a very hard time to fit in except for the first couple of years for the lack of english. Even then swimming was always there as an outlet. I can't say that I had support from the Russian community, the only other Russian I knew went to my high school and was in a similar situation. He is also Ukrainian, not Russian. I did have support from our swimming community though, some very nice people helped in the toughest of times. Big thanks to the Gallas family!

Thank you for your questions and fight on!


Q:

Although your coach Dave Salo is a very highly regarded coach multiple of his swimmers such as Jessica Hardy, Ous Mellouli, Yulia Emifova (twice now) have failed drug tests. What is your response to this?

A:

I wouldn't like to talk about other athletes on the subject, it's not mine to do. But I can assure you that Dave Salo has no connection to these incidents. One time I took creatine post weight workout in front of him and he completely flipped out. He said something along the lines that I don't need it to be great. I believe and trust him.


Q:

Will you be competing for Russia or the US? Also what are some of your target times?

A:

I will be competing for Russia as I have been in the last 5 years internationally. At one point I was trying to get American citizenship in time for the 2012 Olympics but that did not happen for the best. I am happy and proud to represent my country.

My target times for this year are 21.1 and 47.0


Q:

it seems like the olympics are going to be a disaster (due to all of the shit happening in brazil), i feel terrible for all of you athletes :/ tbh everything should have been moved to a different country a year ago.

A:

Water should be ok in the pool where we will be competing. It's those marathon open water swimmers that should maybe be concerned. There are always scary tales before the Olympics not sure why. Might have something to do with politics. More concerned about the Zika virus though.


Q:

Is there a point in witch sprinters can't physically pass? Or a time that cannot be broken?

A:

I'm sure there is one, for example, you can't go 50 meters under 10 seconds. World record is 20.9. That is of course exaggerated but there were numerous times in different sports we'd put such limits and those would be broken eventually. As we often say records are there to be broken. Maybe you've seen before that we used to swim in full body suits looking like super-heroes that enabled us to reduce drag, align body position and break nearly every record in the books. After the body suits were banned due to unnatural bolster of results - they were banned in 2008. People were saying that it would take decades to come close to those records but here we are not only coming close but breaking them already. Swimming is growing very rapidly and consistently. I can't even imagine what kind of results will be posted in 20 years from now.


Q:

As a current D3 swimmer what advice could you give me to improve with swimming while juggling college life?

A:

Try to get as much sleep as possible! As exciting as college life/college sports is it can burn you out very quickly. Studies, social life, training, hobbies everything is good in moderation but enough good sleep will give you an edge in everything. A good advice that my coach gave me is find a quiet place on campus where you can relax by yourself and reflect. Good luck!


Q:

How did you first discover your talent at swimming?

A:

I've done a number of sports ranging from ball room dancing to olympic weight lifting (at 9 years old!) but swimming was something that I always enjoyed and it got me. It was my first coach that saw the talent in me but I really had no idea. After I broke my first age group record in the 100 yd freestyle at 14 I started to think that I picked the right sport.