John Godina 22.22m personal best in Carson (© Kirby Lee/The Sporting Image)
John Godina, at the age of 36 one of the mostdecorated throwers in track-and-field history with nine Olympic and World Championships medals to his credit, has announced his retirement.
“From the day-to-day challenges of training to the intensity of competition, I will miss the rigors of being an athlete,” said Godina, a four-time World Champion and two-time Olympic medalist. “But I am retiring with pride and a true sense of satisfaction with what I’ve accomplished. I’m happy to have played a large role in the drug-free revolution in my events, and I look forward to continuing a heavy involvement in the sport.”
Godina’s 14-year professional career began in 1995 with a gold medal in the shot put at the World Championships just months after winning NCAA titles in both the shot and discus. He would repeat as World Champion outdoors in 1997 and 2001, also winning a World Indoor title in 2001. At the 1996 Olympics, he won a silver medal in the shot put, and at the 2000 Olympics earned a bronze medal.
Also a two-time US discus champion, Godina in 1996 became the first American in 72 years to make the US Olympic team in both the shot and discus, and his six appearances at the World Championships outdoors ties him for the most by an American male.
Twice a Jesse Owens Award winner as the top male track-and-field athlete in the US, Godina was a pioneer in the crusade against the use of performance-enhancing drugs. He plans to continue his volunteer work with the United States Anti-Doping Agency.
Godina recently began coaching throwers, including 2007 US runner-up Dan Taylor. Founder of the Whole Fitness gym and kPilates in Mesa, Ariz., he and his wife, Kendra Jordan, will open a second fitness studio, Karve, in nearby Scottsdale next month. Godina has also just opened John Godina’s World Throws Center and John Godina’s Center for Track and Field, a 13,000-foot training facility in Mesa for elite athletes in all areas of the sport.