Prue Watt

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Prue Watt
120411 - Prue Watt - 3b - 2012 Team processing.jpg
2012 Australian Paralympic Team portrait of Watt
Personal information
Full name Prue Watt
Nationality  Australia
Born (1987-01-01) 1 January 1987 (age 30)
Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia
Height 1.68 m (5 ft 6 in)
Sport Swimming
Strokes Freestyle, butterfly, medley
Classifications S13, SB13, SM13

Prue Watt, OAM (born 1 January 1987, in Newcastle, New South Wales) is a Paralympic swimming gold medalist from Australia. She has represented Australia at the four Paralympics from 2004 to 2016. [1]


Prudence Elise Watt was born on 1 January 1987 in Newcastle, New South Wales.[2][3] She was born premature at 24 weeks and the high levels of oxygen in her system resulted in her retina being damaged. As a result, she can see about 2 meters ahead and has a limited amount of peripheral vision. Her vision impairment is labelled retinopathy of prematurity.[4] In 2016, she is studying a Bachelor of Science, majoring in Neuroscience at University of New South Wales (UNSW). [5] She is a recipient of a UNSW Ben Lexcen Sports Scholarship and is part of UNSW’s elite athlete program. [5]


Prue Watt arrives at the 2012 Australian Paralympian of the Year ceremony
Watt at the 2012 London Paralympics

She began swimming at thirteen and at the age of fifteen, she first represented Australia internationally at the 2002 IPC Swimming World Championships, in Mar Del Plata, Argentina, where she won two bronze medals.[4]

She became interested in swimming through surf life saving and was competing at state and national levels at the age of fourteen. In 2001, she was selected to tour Canada with the NSW Disabled Ski Team. This selection forced her to focus on swimming for her sporting career.[6] She was an Australian Institute of Sport paralympic swimming scholarship holder from 2002 to 2011.[7] She is currently a Victorian Institute of Sport scholarship holder.[citation needed]

She won five silver medals, and one bronze at the 2004 Athens Games, after competing in the Women's 100 m Butterfly S13 event, the Women's 100 m Freestyle S13 event, the Women's 200 m Individual Medley SM13 event, the Women's 400 m Freestyle S13 event and the Women's 50 m Freestyle S13 event. At the same games, she won a bronze medal in the Women's 100 m Breaststroke SB13 event.[8] She competed at the 2008 Beijing Games but failed to win a medal.[8]

At the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne she swam a personal best in the Elite Athletes with a Disability (EAD) 100m freestyle.[9] At the 2006 IPC Swimming World Championships in Eindhoven, Netherlands, she won a silver medal in the Women's 100m Butterfly S13. At the 2011 Para Pan Pacific Championships, she won four medals with gold in the Women's 100m Butterfly and 100m Breaststroke and two bronze medals for the 50m and 100m Freestyle SB13 events.[10]

At the 2012 London Games, she won a gold medal in the Women's 100 m Breaststroke SB13[8] after being the fastest qualifier for the event, and a bronze medal in the Women's 50 m Freestyle SB13.[8] She also participated in the S13 class of the Women's 100 m Freestyle and 200 m Individual Medley.[8]

At the 2015 IPC Swimming World Championships, Glasgow, Scotland, she finished fifth in the Women's 50m Freestyle S13 and Women's 100m Breaststroke SB13, seventh in the Women's 100m Butterfly S13 and eighth in the Women's 100m Freestyle S13.[11]

At the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games, she competed in five different events. She placed sixth the final of Women's 100m Breaststroke SB13 and eighth in the final of Women's 200m Individual Medley SM13. She also raced in Women's 50m Freestyle S13, Women's 100m Freestyle S13 and Women's 100m Butterfly but didn't progress to the finals. [12]


During 2013-2014, she took a break from swimming and trained with the Australian Paralympic Alpine Skiing Team. Watt said "I’ve always had the dream in the back of my mind to compete at a winter and a summer games because not many people have represented Australia in both.” [5]


Watt was the 2004 Australian Paralympic Committee Junior Female Athlete of the Year,[13] and the 2006 and 2007 Telstra Swimmer of the Year with a Disability.[4] She was awarded an Order of Australia Medal in the 2014 Australia Day Honours "for service to sport as a Gold Medallist at the London 2012 Paralympic Games."[3]


  1. ^ "Swimming Australia Paralympic Squad Announcement". Swimming Australia News, 13 April 2016. Retrieved 14 April 2016. 
  2. ^ Australian Paralympic Committee (2004). Media guide : 2004 Athens Paralympic Games. Sydney, Australia: Australian Paralympic Committee. 
  3. ^ a b "Australia Day honours list 2014: in full". Daily Telegraph. 26 January 2014. Retrieved 26 January 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c "Prue Watt Profile". Telstra Paralympic Education Program Website. Retrieved 13 March 2012. 
  5. ^ a b c Schubert, Leilah. "Prue Watt goes with the flow to reach Rio". University of New South Wales Newsroom website. Retrieved 1 June 2016. 
  6. ^ "Prue Watt". Babel Management Website. Retrieved 13 March 2012. 
  7. ^ "AIS at the Paralympics". Australian Sports Commission Website. Australian Sports Commission. Retrieved 8 March 2012. 
  8. ^ a b c d e Results for Prue Watt from the International Paralympic Committee. Retrieved 6 October 2012.
  9. ^ "Commonwealth Athlete Wins Award". Vision Australia Media Release, 25 March 2006. Retrieved 13 March 2012. 
  10. ^ "Paralympic student takes the gold". Monash University News. 14 September 2011. 
  11. ^ "Prue Watt results". Glasgow 2015 IPC Swimming World Championships. Retrieved 21 July 2015. 
  12. ^ "Prue Watt". Rio Paralympics Official Results. Rio 2016. Retrieved 22 October 2016. 
  13. ^ Healey, Melida (3 November 2004). "Junior athlete title for Prue". Guardian News. Retrieved 13 March 2012. 

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