Charles "Charlie" Houchin (born November 3, 1987) is an American former competition swimmer who has had his greatest international success in freestyle relay events. He earned a gold medal as a member of the winning United States team in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay at the 2012 Summer Olympics. He is the CEO and founder of HydroXphere (pronounced "Hydrosphere"). Their product, Meet Central, is a mobile app that can operate an entire swim meet from iPhones.
|Full name||Charles Houchin|
|Born||November 3, 1987|
Lake Forest, Illinois
|Height||6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)|
|Weight||185 lb (84 kg)|
|College team||University of Michigan|
Houchin graduated from William G. Enloe High School in Raleigh, North Carolina. Both of his parents were All-American swimmers for North Carolina State University. Houchin attended the University of Michigan, where he swam for the Michigan Wolverines swimming and diving team in National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) competition from 2006 to 2010. He graduated from Michigan with a bachelor's degree in sports management in 2010. He currently swims for IX3[sports] in Jacksonville, Florida.
Houchin used the money he earned from his gold medal at the 2012 London Olympics to found HydroXphere and create Meet Central. Adamant about increasing the value of participation for young swimmers, Houchin innovated a better swim meet experience for athletes, parents, and coaches. Meet Central operates an entire swim meet from iPhones and iPads, creating a more relaxing environment for parents, volunteers, and officials. Using Meet Central, swim clubs can operate a meet in less time, with fewer volunteers, and less complexity.
At the 2010 FINA Short Course World Championships, Houchin won a silver medal in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay for his contributions in the heats.
At the 2011 World Aquatics Championships in Shanghai, China, Houchin competed in one event, the 400-meter freestyle. Houchin posted a time of 3:48.80 in the heats and did not advance to the final, finishing fourteenth overall.
At the 2011 Pan American Games in Guadalajara, Mexico, Houchin won two gold medals in the 400-meter freestyle and the 4×200-meter freestyle relay.
At the 2012 United States Olympic Trials, the qualifying meet for the 2012 Olympics, Houchin made the U.S. Olympic team for the first time by finishing sixth in the 200-meter freestyle with a time of 1:46.88, which qualified him to swim in the 4×200-meter freestyle as a member of the U.S. relay team. Houchin also competed in the 400-meter freestyle at the trials, and finished fourth overall (3:48.32). At the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Houchin earned a gold medal by swimming for the winning U.S. team in the preliminaries of the 4×200-meter freestyle relay.
At the 2013 World Aquatics Championships in Barcelona, Spain, Houchin combined with Conor Dwyer, Ryan Lochte, and Ricky Berens in the 4×200-meter freestyle relay, with the team finishing in first place for the gold medal. Swimming the third leg, Houchin recorded a split of 1:45.59, and the team finished with a final time of 7:01.72.
Houchin is a Christian. Houchin has spoken about his faith saying, "I like to think I carry a quiet confidence into the water because of my relationship with Christ. He created a swimming timing system called Meet Central, a system that helps swim meets go faster and have more accurate times. This allows swim teams to use mobile devices to start, time, judge, and score very quickly.
- Burkhart, Jessie (January 6, 2014). "Olympian Swimmer from Raleigh Tests Entrepreneurial Waters". American City Business Journals. Triangle Business Journal. Retrieved September 19, 2014.
- Jones, Colleen Michele (January 16, 2014). "feature helps Olympian 'jump into deep end' with app". American City Business Journals. Jacksonville Business Journal. Retrieved September 19, 2014.
- Havey, Joeseph (January 16, 2014). "New app streamlines the swim meet scoring process". Technician. Technician Online. Retrieved September 19, 2014.
- "2010 FINA World Swimming Championships (25 m) – Men's 4 × 200-metre freestyle relay (heats)" (PDF). Omega Timing. Retrieved December 24, 2010.
- "2011 World Aquatics Championships – Men's 400-metre freestyle (heats)" (PDF). Omega Timing. Archived from the original (PDF) on March 31, 2012. Retrieved August 5, 2011.
- OmegaTiming.com, 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials – Swimming, Men's 200m Freestyle (final). Retrieved July 16, 2012.
- "Charlie Houchin".
- Commings, Jeff. "Charlie Houchin Announces Retirement From Swimming, Will Focus Energy on New Company". Swimming World. Swimming World Magazine. Retrieved September 19, 2014.
- Charles Houchin at FINA
- Charlie Houchin at the International Olympic Committee
- Charlie Houchin at USA Swimming
- Charlie Houchin at the United States Olympic Committee
- Charlie Houchin – University of Michigan athlete profile at MGoBlue.com
- Evans, Hilary; Gjerde, Arild; Heijmans, Jeroen; Mallon, Bill. "Charlie Houchin". Olympics at Sports-Reference.com. Sports Reference LLC.