Damien Gulliver is a national swim and surf lifesaving gold medallist. He holds the oldest record in Gold Coast swimming. Damien has “lived and breathed” the swim industry since birth and is a member of the acclaimed Gulliver swim family.
Damien is the son of pioneer swim school and ‘Hall of Fame’ coach Terry Gulliver. The Gulliver’s are responsible and recognised globally for inventing many of the modern learn to swim techniques taught today. The Gulliver’s have taught over two million pupils and are renowned for achieving the results other swim schools cannot.
From birth Damien spent most of his days playing under the water alongside his swim coach parents Sue and Terry whilst they conducted learn to swim and squad lessons. Damien and his brothers were so comfortable in their surrounds that they actually believed they could breathe underwater. As children, Damien and his brothers were often in the media due to their amazing skills and were once filmed riding their tricycles along the bottom of the pool to the amazement of TV audiences around the world.
Vid: Vintage footage of Damien age 3 on Tricycle 1978
Damien's father Terry was heavily involved in all levels of swimming from learn to swim to elite and attended all major national and international competitions as a coach or sports journalist. Naturally Terry took his sons along with him and as a result Damien was fortunate enough to have spectated at every level of competition in swimming and surf lifesaving from the Australian Nationals to the World Games. At 14 years of age Damien formally started work as a coach alongside his father after school. Six years later, Damien started his own swim and surf school at Bond University, had his own private surf-safety program /surf lifesaving competition squad and co- designed and operated a children’s surf camp/program which later expanded nationally.
Pic: Damien at age 14 working along side father coach Terry Gulliver 1989
By 23 Damien had earned a reputation as a master coach due to his unique ability to teach at every level (beginner-elite) and discipline in both swimming and surf lifesaving. Damien produced swim and surf lifesaving state and national medalists, nurturing each athlete. One female athlete under Damien’s direction earned a place in history for winning every event at an Australian Junior Surf Nationals (Inter State Titles) competition and in doing so beat every male competitor. That amazing sporting accomplishment is yet to be achieved by any other athlete in the sport.
Pic: Damien with swimmers, Gold Coast Swim Titles, 1997
Over the years Damien has also evolved into into a leading authority in the area of Child Surf Safety designing programs for some of the world's leading surf lifesaving clubs. Along with teaching swimming surf safety is something Damien is quite passionate about.