World Aquatics Championships Stats: Most medals won by a swimmer

Swimming, a sport that entails employing the full body to navigate through water, can be pursued individually or as part of a team. The sport holds a high status in the Olympic games as it offers a variety of races across different distances and styles including butterfly, backstroke, breaststroke, freestyle, and individual medley. 

Beyond single participant races, swimming also features relays where four athletes compete in either freestyle or medley styles. Since its inception in 1973, swimming has remained a fundamental part of every FINA World Aquatics Championships. Furthermore, open water swimming joined the World Championships program in 1991.

Nations that have dominated the World Aquatics Championships in Swimming

The World Aquatics Championships 2023 got underway from 14 July and will run until 30 July 2023. As of the 11th day of the 2023 edition of the World Aquatics Championships, the United States has a sensational record, having clinched 240 gold, 184 silver, and 135 bronze medals, with a staggering total of 559 medals. 

Following in second place, Australia boasts an impressive tally of 240 medals, with 89 gold, 91 silver, and 60 bronze medals. The third place on this list is held by China, which has secured a commendable 125 medals, consisting of 52 gold, 25 silver, and 48 bronze.

Most medals won by a swimmer at the World Aquatics Championships

From 2001 to 2011, Michael Phelps of the United States created a lasting impression in the sport as he garnered a remarkable total of 33 medals, including a whopping 26 gold medals. The legacy that Phelps left behind was then extended by Katie Ledecky, a female swimmer from the United States, who, from 2013 to 2023, earned 19 gold and 4 silver medals, for a total of 23.

The third most successful swimmer at the event is Ryan Lochte, from the United States. His ten-year stint from 2005 to 2015 saw him earn an impressive total of 27 medals, including 18 gold, 5 silver, and 4 bronze medals. Let’s take a look at the swimmers with the most medals in the history of the World Aquatics Championships.

RankSwimmer (Country)GoldSilverBronzeTotal
1Michael Phelps (United States)266133
2Katie Ledecky (United States)194023
3Ryan Lochte (United States)185427
4Caeleb Dressel (United States)152017
5Simone Manuel (United States)113216
6Missy Franklin (United States)112316
7Sun Yang (China)112316
8Ian Thorpe (Australia)111113
9Sarah Sjöström (Sweden)107320
10Grant Hackett (Australia)106319

More Swimming Stats-

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  2. Swimming records that have not been bettered since Summer Olympics 2020 in Tokyo
  3. World Aquatics Championships stats: Which countries have dominated the tournament?
  4. Yusra Mardini: What are the top achievements of the swimmer?