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Ariana Kukors comes out of swimming retirement

Jun 20, 2014, 10:05 AM EDT

Ariana Kukors Getty Images

World champion swimmer Ariana Kukors‘ retirement lasted about one year.

Kukors, the 2009 World champion and world record holder in the 200m individual medley, announced last summer she had tossed aside her cap and goggles.

She was a correspondent for Seattle NBC affiliate KING 5 at the Sochi Olympics, where the atmosphere played a role in inspiring her return. She detailed her thoughts in a blog.

“[We] were standing together when the Olympic cauldron lit up, and I didn’t realize what the Olympics meant to me until that moment,” Kukors, 25, who finished fifth in her only Olympic swim, the 2012 200m IM, told KING 5.  “I need to do this, it’s so amazing. I need to do this.

“The pool is the essence of my soul.”

Kukors will live and train at USC, where close friend and Olympic champion breaststroker Rebecca Soni used to train. She hopes to return to competition next year, according to KING 5.

Soni, 27, is still retired.

Katie Ledecky breaks 1500m freestyle world record

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