Plays tennis left-handed, despite being right-handed.
Coached by his uncle, who was also a tennis player. .
Turned down a request from the Spanish Tennis Federation to leave home to train when he was 14.
Took home gold at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing; missed the 2012 Olympics in London due to injury.
Spent a record 160 weeks at No. 2 before overtaking Roger Federer for the top spot.
In 2009, became the first player to hold Grand Slam titles on clay, grass and hard court simultaneously.
Coauthored the memoir Rafa (2011).
Won 10 titles in 2013, including the French Open, U.S. Open, and five masters tournaments; reclaimed World No. 1.
Made history by winning the 2014 French Open, becoming the first player to win five consecutive French Open Titles, nine titles at any one Grand Slam, and to have at least one Grand Slam title in 10 consecutive years.
Chosen to be the flag-bearer for Spain at the Opening Ceremonies of the 2016 Olympics in Rio; later won a gold in men's doubles, with Marc Lopez.
Founded the Rafa Nadal Foundation to help socially-disadvantaged children; opened the Rafa Nadal Academy in his hometown to help train and educate young tennis players.