Climber Colin Duffy, 17, on How School Going Virtual Has Helped Him Find Training Time for Olympics

People Magazine

Homework, prom and … gold medals.

Colin Duffy, 17, is opening up about how he’s managed to juggle being a high school student with his climbing career, especially in the run-up to the Tokyo Olympics this summer.

“It’s not super easy to balance everything,” Duffy, of Broomfield, Colorado, tells PEOPLE during the Team USA Tokyo Olympics Media Summit, “but I just have adjusted to a pretty busy schedule, I manage my time well through training and climbing and getting assignments done.”

The high school junior adds of the COVID-19 pandemic and the Olympics delay, “Through these hard times I’ve been able to climb lots and also succeed academically. So, I’m fortunate enough to just be able to manage everything.”

Duffy, who is the youngest member of the USA Climbing team, also notes that his school’s shift to virtual learning amid the pandemic has afforded him more training availability. He explains, “School being online for the majority of this year has also been super beneficial since I have a lot more free time than I typically would.”

The athlete started climbing when he was just five years old, learning at ABC Kids Climbing in Boulder where he still trains today with Brooke Raboutou, a fellow USA Climbing team member.

Duffy is now a 10-time Youth National Champion, and won gold at the 2020 IFSC Pan-American Championships.

This year marks the first time that climbing has been a sport at the Olympic Summer Games. Men’s and women’s climbers will separately compete in three disciplines — speed climbing, bouldering, and lead climbing — to be in contention for a medal.

KT Tape signs Olympian Steele Johnson

KT Tape®, the leader in drug-free pain relief products, has announced a new partnership with USA Diving, making KT Tape the Official Kinesiology Tape sponsor of USA Diving’s athletes and programs, and supporting divers to go for the gold in the Olympic Games Tokyo 2020. The company has also signed three U.S. Olympic divers to its impressive roster of athletes: Olympic Silver Medalist Steele Johnson; 10-time national champion Kassidy Cook; and World Championship Bronze Medalist Katrina Young.

“We are thrilled to have KT Tape as our partner to support our High Performance Squad and the entire USA Diving community,” said Lee Michaud, president of USA Diving. “Our athletes train extremely hard and having the ability to work hand-in-hand with KT Tape to maximize their recovery, support their journey and help them to perform at their highest level is invaluable.”

USA Diving is a not-for-profit organization that selects, conditions and trains teams to represent the United States in major diving events including the Olympic Games, World Championships, FINA Diving World Cup and the USA Diving National Championships. KT Tape products designed for muscle, ligament and tendon pain relief and support will be made available to USA Diving athletes at their competitions and stocked in their team medical kits.

Steele Johnson: Johnson, a native of Carmel, Indiana, earned a silver medal in the synchronized 10-meter in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, and 13th in individual 10-meter. His career highlights include three World Championships and diving as a four-time World Cup team member and a 2019 Pan American Games team member.

“I’m very excited to partner with KT Tape as I continue to pursue my goal of competing in my second Olympic Games,” said Johnson. “KT Tape has been a major help in my training and competing over the years as I have battled multiple injuries. I’m feeling strong going into 2021 and KT Tape is helping me stay strong through my training!”