But he wasn’t prepared for the impact that achieving this would have on his mental health and the deep depression that would accompany his new-found success. More than the physical toll, though, Boudia admitted he would have retired without a doubt had he not switched events. David found out later that the coach had said he would never be good enough to compete at the highest level due to his having a “banana back.” Boudia remembers this as the moment that triggered his “turbo self,” a hyper-competitive drive to excel. U.S. diver Steele Johnson won a silver medal Monday in Rio de Janeiro with teammate David Boudia for men’s synchronized 10-meter platform diving. It takes experience and competition.”. It tends to be an event for younger divers, not a married man with two daughters and a real estate license like Boudia. Diving off the 10-meter platform takes a toll on an Olympian’s joints. From a young age, he was always driven by what he now feels were superficial goals; fame, riches and notoriety. As a seven-year-old gymnast, David Boudia remembers watching his first Olympic Games, Atlanta 1996, and dreaming of competing on the world stage. To reach our full potential, we have to dream big but having such high expectations of ourselves can come at a cost. It was his first time competing since earning the synchronized silver and individual bronze medals on 10-meter platform at the 2016 Olympics. The 29-year-old said he just about belly-flopped in a February crashed dive in platform practice, the worst he had missed a dive … Boudia’s mental health began to deteriorate after representing the United States at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games when he was just 19. RIO DE JANEIRO, BRAZIL - AUGUST 08: David Boudia and Steele Johnson of the United States compete in … All five of Boudia’s world medals come from platform events. Growing up, he enjoyed a normal childhood in the Midwest. His father would make him pre-training breakfast at 6am each day and his mother would drive him to the pool for practice. Once he returned in 2018, he suffered a concussion on a training dive from the 10m platform in February, sparking his switch to 3m springboard. David Boudia, U.S. Olympic gold medallist diver, struggled to ride the high... At the age of 11, in suburban Indianapolis, Boudia’s ambitions began to take shape as he worked towards becoming a top athlete. “Let’s say you drive a sedan your entire life and you step out and you get into a truck, and the feel is just different,” Boudia said. Each Tuesday leading up to the Games, TeamUSA.org will present a nugget you should read about – from athletes to watch to storylines to follow to Japanese culture and landmarks – as part of “Tokyo 2020 Tuesday.” Follow along on social media with the hashtag #Tokyo2020Tuesday. If this sounds familiar, then you’re not alone; around one in five young Americans now struggle with their mental health. He's also training his spirit and his heart and hopes to inspire others with his message. When Boudia was 12 years old, a legendary Olympic coach came to his pool. Then, in a February 2018 workout, he lost his position in the air on his favorite dive — a back 3 ½ pike — and smacked the water. Boudia, whose favorite dive is 109C, enjoys anything competitive (football, basketball, soccer, etc.) "What’s the purpose? Boudia experienced dizziness, blackouts and fatigue following his dive in February that went horribly wrong. Why did I not try?’” Boudia said. He had an undeniable feeling that “I have no desire whatsoever to dive off this ever again.”. He was forced to miss several major competitions this year because of the concussion. Boudia also switched events. He was managing 15 clients on top of training full-time. Olympic diving champion David Boudia was supposed to be in Tokyo right now. David Bou... TM © Olympic Channel Services S.L. So when he did just that, dropping from a platform the height of a three-story building only to slam into the water and become concussed, it wasn’t a total surprise for the three-time Olympic diver. His family, who were already Olympics fanatics, were a strong support system whose work ethic inspired him to aim high. After excelling in the 10m platform, David Boudia suffered concussion and retired from diving. Boudia was named to the 2008 U.S. Olympic team in the 10-meter platform and in the synchronized 10-meter platform event with former synchro partner Thomas Finchum. “It was kind of a good wakeup call snapping on the water to kind of open up my eyes and (see) what am I doing now that’s going to get me to where I want to be in the future,” he said. 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