George Corones, who is on the verge of his 100th birthday, has truly proved that age is just a number. Although he is considerably older than most competing swimmers, that hasn’t stopped him from making history.
Corones, an Australian, has been practicing swimming since childhood. Unfortunately, he was forced to leave the sport during World War II. But years later, at the age of 80, he was able to rediscover his love for swimming, using swimming as a way to stay fit and exercise for good health.
His decision to return to swimming was nothing but positive results. Most recently, he broke a free-swimming record set in 2014. So let’s dig into this man’s life to know more about him.
At the benchmark competition for the Commonwealth Games in Queensville, George competed in the age group 100-104. It is not surprising that George swims alone at most distances, as many people of such an old age are not physically fit for such a vigorous sport. His only rival, him, Corones swam very well at everything he did, but his 50-meter free-range left a memorable moment.
Starting the race with a near-perfect start, the Corones finished 56.12, up to 35 seconds faster than the previous record set by the UK’s John Harrison. Preparing for the race, his main goal was to get a record and do about 58 seconds. And although he was exhausted to finish the distance, he couldn’t be happier with himself.
After the record 50 new freedoms, Corones is now widely recognized and praised. But this man is considered great for many more reasons than his achievements and mere statistics.
Australia’s George Corones is not only an inspiration to swimmers, but he is also an inspiration to anyone with their own goals and dreams in mind. His story proves that the only thing that matters in a person’s personality is attitude. Positive results won’t come from a negative thought. Corones knew he was one of the very few people who could swim at his age. He knows that he is not as fast or strong as the young swimmers, but that does not mean he will have less success. Everyone defines success differently. For George, his success is swimming less than 58 seconds in 50 meters of freedom.
One thing special about Corones is that he doesn’t give up on his goals, even if they appear out of reach. Swimming is difficult for a 99 year old, as it requires both great strength and endurance. But this did not stop George. Although he says that he is very tired, he pushes himself to his limits, reaches the results he strives for and allows himself to be the athlete he desires. At the end of his contest, he told the BBC “It was an exemplary swim for me, very balanced … and I hit the edge of the pool with my hands when I finished”. His record is an achievement that both he and the world will remember forever.
George’s record-breaking performance will certainly inspire older, retired athletes to keep their unfinished goals until they are fulfilled. Corones suggests that it’s never too late to start something. Choosing to swim as an 80-year-old after decades of inactivity is extremely difficult. But he has proven to the world that just because something is difficult and requires a lot of effort, doesn’t mean it’s impossible. Of course, it is unlikely that George Corones will inspire other 90s to start swimming, but he will certainly inspire elders to pursue their dreams in a world beyond swimming. George Corones gives his strength to make people confident that every athlete is an athlete forever, as long as they have dedication and determination.
From the story of George Corones, it can be learned that a goal is never out of reach if one is willing to strive for it. Everyone has their own personal goals, and although goals may be as difficult or not as difficult as breaking a world record, achieving them is still something to be proud of. Even the smallest of feats is something to celebrate. Be confident, resilient and work hard. But most importantly, have fun. Moments don’t last forever, so make the most of and enjoy them while they’re happening.