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Eric Hedlin

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Eric Hedlin
Eric Hedlin in Irvine, California, at the US Open in August 2013.
Personal information
Born (1993-04-18) April 18, 1993 (age 31)
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Height6 ft 1 in (185 cm)
Weight178 lb (81 kg)
ClubVictoria Academy of Swimming
Medal record
World Championships
Silver medal – second place 2013 Barcelona 5 km open water
Bronze medal – third place 2019 Gwangju 5 km open water
Pan Pacific Championships
Silver medal – second place 2018 Tokyo 10 km open water
Bronze medal – third place 2013 Kazan 800 m freestyle

Eric Hedlin (born April 18, 1993) is a Canadian long-distance swimmer. Hedlin won a silver medal in the men's open water 5 km swim at the 2013 World Aquatics Championships.[1]


Hedlin began his notable international career competing in Randy Bennett's Victoria Swim Academy that also includes major Canadian World and Olympic medallist Ryan Cochrane who is also a long distance swimmer. As a member of the Canadian swim team he won a bronze medal at the 2013 Summer Universiade in the men's 800 m freestyle.[2]

Hedlin qualified for the 2013 World Aquatics Championships by finishing 16th at the FINA World Cup event in Cancun Mexico in April of that year. This put him into the 5 km race where he was in a dogfight with former World Champion Thomas Lurz and Olympic champion Oussama Mellouli. Hedlin said of the race that " "I am really happy, because I didn't expect [to beat Lurz]. It felt pretty good. I was trying to hold a top position and stay in everyone's draft. In the final sprint, Oussama was so much quicker than me, and I couldn't do anything to beat him."[3] Hedlin was honoured with Swimming Canada's 2013 People's Choice Race of the Year award for his performance in this race.[4]

He continued to swim for the University of Victoria (UVic) Vikes Varsity Swim Team through 2017, winning gold at the U SPORTS championships, and setting a new collegiate record in the 1500-metre freestyle.[5] In April that same year, Hedlin was named to Canada's 2017 World Aquatics Championships team in Budapest, Hungary.[6][7] He also was selected to represent Canada at the 2017 FISU Universiade in Taipei.

At the 2018 Pan Pacific Championships, Eric Hedlin captured silver in the 10-km open water race, and also finished eighth in the 1500-m freestyle. Hedlin later won gold in the 10-km race at the 2018 UANA Open Water Swimming Championships in the Cayman Islands, and won Swimming Canada’s Male Open Water Swimmer of the Year.[8]

In 2019, Hedlin won bronze in 5-km at the FINA world aquatics championships in Gwangju, South Korea,[9][10] and won Athlete of the Year at UVic.[11]

Prior to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, Hedlin was awarded the President's Cup from UVic, for his combination of academic and athletic success that season.[12] He continued to train through the pandemic, despite Olympic Trials being postponed until the following year.

In 2021, Hedlin was named as one of 4 athletes to compete on behalf of Canada at Olympic Trials for the 10-km open water race.[13] Unfortunately, Hedlin was unable to finish the race due to medical issues and did not qualify for the team.[14] Hedlin continues to swim in anticipation for the 2021-2022 season.

Personal life[edit]

Although Hedlin was born in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, he lived in San Diego, California from the age of a few months until he graduated from La Jolla High School. At that time he returned to Canada to train in swimming and to attend the University of Victoria.[15] His older sister, Dr. Margot Hedlin, is a physician training at NYU Medicine, and his younger brother, Paul Hedlin, graduated from the University of British Columbia in 2020 with a degree in International Economics.

In the spring of 2019, Hedlin graduated from UVic with a bachelor's degree in computer science. Later that year in June, he proposed to his long-time girlfriend and fellow Vikes teammate, Taylor Snowden-Richardson. After their original wedding date in 2020 had to be postponed due to COVID-19, they married in April 2021.

Hedlin successfully defended his master's thesis in September 2021, and will be continuing his education by studying for a Ph.D.


  1. ^ "Canada's Eric Hedlin takes silver at 5K open water race at swim worlds". CBC Sports. July 20, 2013.
  2. ^ Michael Belanger (July 15, 2013). "Hedlin swims to bronze at Summer Universiade Games". University of Victoria Vikes.
  3. ^ Cleve Deenshaw (July 20, 2013). "Island's Hedlin shocks aquatics worlds with silver". Times Colonist.
  4. ^ Mike Lewis (December 3, 2013). "Canada's Newest Open Water Star a People's Choice". SwimSwam.
  5. ^ "Hedlin sets new U SPORTS 1500-metre freestyle record to close out nationals". University of Victoria Athletics. Retrieved September 4, 2021.
  6. ^ Sutherland, James (April 9, 2017). "Canada To Send 26 Pool, 6 Open Water Swimmers To World Championships". swimswam.com. Swim Swam. Retrieved April 10, 2017.
  7. ^ "Sydney Pickrem Sets Canadian Record, Team Canada Named on Exciting Final Night at Trials". swimming.ca/. Swimming Canada. April 9, 2017. Retrieved April 10, 2017.
  8. ^ "Eric Hedlin – Swimming Canada". www.swimming.ca. Retrieved September 4, 2021.
  9. ^ Dheensaw, Cleve. "Victoria's Eric Hedlin swims to 5K bronze against best in the world". Times Colonist. Retrieved September 4, 2021.
  10. ^ Gilhula, Cara (July 13, 2019). "Eric Hedlin swims to bronze at World Aquatics Championship". Team Canada - Official Olympic Team Website. Retrieved September 4, 2021.
  11. ^ Dheensaw, Cleve. "Swimmers Hedlin, Hanus make splash at UVic Vikes annual awards". Times Colonist. Retrieved September 4, 2021.
  12. ^ "Hedlin pockets President's Cup as Vikes split three other major awards". University of Victoria Athletics. Retrieved September 4, 2021.
  13. ^ Keith, Braden (March 2, 2021). "SWIMMING CANADA NAMES 4 SWIMMERS FOR TOKYO 2020 OPEN WATER QUALIFIER". Swim Swam News.
  14. ^ "Canadian open-water swimmer Hau-Li Fan qualifies for Tokyo Olympics". thestar.com. June 20, 2021. Retrieved September 4, 2021.
  15. ^ "Dinos star McIntosh underway in heptathlon at Summer Universiade". Calgary Herald. July 10, 2013.

External links[edit]