Many of the athletes who’ll compete at the 2012 Olympic Games in London will have trained since early childhood, but U.S. beach volleyball player Phil Dalhausser says he found his calling a little later in life.

“I started playing volleyball when I was a senior in high school,” Dalhausser said in our exclusive video interview as part of our ongoing coverage of the Olympic Games. “I had a late start,” he added.

Dalhausser explained that it was the persistence of both a school mentor and a best friend that got him addicted to beach volleyball. “My math teacher was the coach of the volleyball team and asked me to come out,” he said. “My best buddy was on the team and pushed me towards volleyball, as well, and once I got out there I picked up the sport pretty easily. Everything came natural to me, and I became obsessed with the sport.”

Watch the full video interview here:

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