U.S. Artistic Swimming Team Qualifies to Participate in the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris – NBC Los Angeles

The U.S. Artistic Swimming Team is making its final push in training as the 2024 Summer Olympics in Paris quickly approach.

Artistic swimming, formerly known as synchronized swimming, requires athletes to tap into their best skills of acrobatics and artistry.

As the U.S. artistic swimming team qualified for its first Olympic opportunity since 2008, team members say they spend 8 to 10 hours a day in the water while training at UCLA, often without a weekend break.

“This is our full-time job,” Kenny Gaudet said. “We moved from across the country to pursue this dream and have the opportunity to be on the best team in the world.”

Training also takes place outside the pool. The athletes say they hone their skills with cross-training, gymnastics and ballet – all with the goal of matching all angles in and out of the water.

“We skip holidays. We don’t see our families that often,” said Dani Ramirez, a student at UCLA. “We sacrifice a lot to be here.”

For swimmers like Megumi Field of Cerritos, wearing USA on the chest is an extra motivator while pushing through grueling workouts and shaking off burning eyes and tired legs.

“There is so much pride that comes with being part of the USA team,” Field said. “It is super exciting for us to be able to represent the team again in the Olympic stage.”

Ramirez, a daughter of immigrants, is also reminded of her parents when training for the Olympics becomes difficult.

“Coming from an immigrant family, it means a lot to us to represent the United States,” she explained. “We have done a lot to get here, done a lot for our citizenship. Representing the U.S. is something my mom and dad are very proud of.”