I talk about myself a lot in this post so I should start by clarifying a few things. I was an athlete while at high school and university and a fairly good one. I kinda-sorta reached the national level of competition during a few years of university. I once qualified to try out for the Olympics but knew my chances were so low, I went on a biology field trip instead of Olympic Trials. In the world of competitive swimming, I was very good, but definitely not great. Now, to talk about great athletes:
In Canada, I don’t recall receiving many privileges in support of my athletic training. At university, my competitive swim training was entirely free and if I missed a class due to a competition, my professor was obliged to allow me to make up missed tests or assignments or the like in another way. Nowadays, athletes at university have to pay for some of their training.