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by Phil Whitten

July 19, 2000

NCAA champion to enjoying Masters' health benefits

What do you do for an encore after you've been NCAA champion three of your four years in college and a member of your country's Olympic team? Swim Masters, of course.

Since 1990 that's just what Sean Murphy, 31, former NCAA champion at Stanford and Canadian Olympian, has done. In 1994 he did it rather well, setting spectacular world records for men 30-34 in the 50-, 100- and 200- meter backstroke and the 400 IM at the Montreal World Championships. His 50 (27.26) and 200 back (2:05.62) times are well under the 25-29 records.

Murphy, a marketing manager for PeopleSoft, a rapidly growing software company, focused on the global meet last July, combining competition with an opportunity to visit family in Montreal and Toronto.

Despite his competitive success, Sean trains primarily for the physical and psychological benefits swimming offers. "I work a fair number of hours," he explains, "most of it desk work, all of it mental. Swimming improves my outlook on life: not only am I fitter, but I find I have more endurance, I'm more productive, and I'm usually in a better mood. Plus, I love the camaraderie of a group workout." His wife, Renee, he says, is "very supportive" of his swimming.

Murphy, who represents the San Francisco Olympic Club but trains in Walnut Creek, swims about 4,000 yards, four or five days a week. Sean M. Murphy lives in Danville, Calif., and swims for The Olympic Club.

Originally ublished in SWIM magazine, March-April 1995