Michael Phelps was sporting a new item of apparel Sunday at the FINA Swimming World Championships.
He was wearing a walking boot on his right foot and limping thanks to … golf.
“It’s just a fracture. Nothing bad,” Phelps said in an interview on FINA.org. “We’re being very cautious right now.
“So I guess it is true you can get hurt on the golf course.”
Phelps’s coach filled in details about how the injury occurred.
“He hit his foot somehow in the house and then he did that [golf] tournament when he walked about 20 miles and got a little stress fracture,” Bob Bowman told the Associated Press.
Phelps retired from swimming after last year’s London Olympics with a record 22 medals but there has been speculation that he might return for the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Games. If he’s thinking about getting back into the pool, the foot injury won’t be a problem, Bowman said.
“I think he’ll be fine. He can wait that out,” Bowman said, laughing. “I don’t think that’s imminent.”
Phelps acknowledged that it was odd not to jump into the pool when the starting gun fired at worlds.
“It’s kind of weird being on this side of everything,” he said. “It is a little strange to be out and about in public and dressed up, but I am excited to be able to watch some of the swimming this week and not be I guess as nervous.
“This is going to be my first meet seeing people swim since I retired so it’s going to be very different and I’m not sure how I’m going to react, but I’m looking forward to it.”