Champion swimmer Libby Trickett says swimming may have masked mental health challenges faced by Grant Hackett, after his dramatic arrest on the Gold Coast yesterday.
Hackett is believed to have been verbally abusive before stabbing a chopping block at his parents home.
Trickett, who spent years on the Australian swim team with Hackett has told Marto Ed & Robin elite athletes are used to putting on a front. "As an athlete you do protect and mask and not show weakness and all of those sort of things, because that's a very important part of competition and of trying to achieve what you're working towards."
"On some level being an athlete you have to be a little bit bonkers. It's hardcore - mentally, you're a perfectionist and you're wanting to achieve these goals."
Trickett says she too struggled with life after the pool. "The biggest challenge I faced as an athlete transitioning, was trying to work out what you're passionate about."
Hackett is believed to be seeking medical treatment after being released without charge, and Trickett has wished him well. "He's achieved so much for the country, he's an incredible athlete, he is a wonderful person - but his family were saying (this) is not him."
You or anyone you know can find mental health help at Beyond Blue or by calling 1300 22 4636
LISTEN to the full interview here:
Similarly, athlete mentor Michael Blucher says he doesn't know a professional athlete who hasn't struggled with the transition to retirement.
He's told Marto, Ed and Robin "They struggle phsically, emotionally, physiologically, socially, structurally and a lot struggle financially."
Hear his full interview here: