Andrea Gyarmati

b. 1954

by Jacov Sobovitz

Olympic medalist Andrea Gyarmati in 1972. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

In Brief

Andrea Gyarmati is a Hungarian Olympic medalist in swimming. She began training at age twelve and competed in the 1968 Olympics at fourteen. Over the course of her brief career, she won two Olympic medals, several European championships, 28 Hungarian national championships, and set two world records. Gyarmati quit swimming in 1974 to become a pediatrician. She was elected to the International Swimming Hall of Fame in 1995.


The daughter of Olympic medalists, water polo champion Dezso Gyarmati and swimmer Eva Szekely, Andrea Gyarmati was born in Budapest, Hungary, in May 1954. At the age of twelve she began serious training as a swimmer under her mother’s guidance and competed in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico in three events, reaching the finals in all three.

Between 1970 and 1973, Gyarmati gained 23 individual titles and set eleven national, nineteen European, and two world records. In the 1970 European Championships she captured two titles (100-meter butterfly and 200-meter backstroke) and twice placed second (100-meter backstroke and 4x100-meter freeestyle relay). At the 1972 Munich Olympics she won the silver medal in the 100-meter backstroke and a bronze in the 100-meter butterfly. At the 1973 World Championships in Belgrade Gyarmati won the bronze in the 200-meter backstroke and placed fourth in the 100-meter. At the height of her career, she won 28 Hungarian national championships, in the freestyle, breaststroke, and butterfly events.

In the spring of 1974 the 20-year-old Gyarmati suddenly stopped in the middle of a training session supervised by her mother and announced that she was abandoning competitive swimming because she no longer enjoyed it.

Now a pediatrician living in Budapest, Gyarmati is married to Mihaly Hesz, a dentist and former world and Olympic champion kayaker. In 1995 she was elected to the International Swimming Hall of Fame.


“Andrea Gyarmati.” International Swimming Hall of Fame.

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How to cite this page

Sobovitz, Jacov. "Andrea Gyarmati." Shalvi/Hyman Encyclopedia of Jewish Women. 27 February 2009. Jewish Women's Archive. (Viewed on May 23, 2024) <>.