Tomaz Druml has announced his retirement due to health reasons ©Getty Images

Slovenia athlete Tomaz Druml has announced his career is over due to health reasons. 

The 29-year-old had been struggling with heart problems in the last few years and had switched his nationality from Austrian to Slovenia in June in order to continue his sports career. 

But his health issues have flared up again, forcing him into retirement.

“The final diagnosis is that I am suffering from a heart condition, which doesn’t allow me to ski to the max anymore," Druml wrote on his website. 

"Without risky surgical interventions I am not able to go back to normal anytime soon. 

"However, the condition can regenerate in the course of years and sports on a normal level is possible and absolutely not dangerous for me, but high level sports is no longer an option. 

"The consequence is that I am putting my health first and retiring from elite sports."

Tomaz Druml competes during the 15th Nordic Combined World Cup in January 2010 at the 'Toni-Seelos' jump in Seefeld ©Getty Images
Tomaz Druml competes during the 15th Nordic Combined World Cup in January 2010 at the 'Toni-Seelos' jump in Seefeld ©Getty Images

Druml started in 85 World Cup events and won the overall Continental Cup twice, in 2010 and 2014. 

He also has two Junior World Championship gold medals, with the team from Tarvisio 2007 and in the Sprint competition in Zakopane 2008. 

“In retrospective I have to say that I was lucky to lead this lifestyle for so many years," he continued. 

"It was filled with absolutely amazing moments and experiences, countless travels to places I would have never imagined visiting in my life, meeting absolutely amazing people and having fun all the way. 

"I was able to reach many of my goals and I am very happy to have come this far without any bigger injuries.”

Druml finished off, thanking his family, friends, supporters, coaches, staff and fans for their support.

 “I had the greatest time of my life, doing what I love and enjoying the demanding but also very rewarding lifestyle of a professional sportsman. 

"Therefore, thank you all for making this possible - you rule!”

At the time of switching allegiances from Austria to Slovenia Druml had been a member of the Austrian B-team, with the International Ski Federation (FIS) backing his move to change flags.

He admitted at the time: "After a long stretch of health issues during the last three years, I have tried again to reach the top in Nordic combined during the last season. 

"Because my performance, especially in cross-country, was lagging behind at the beginning of the season, I could not make the results and the cut for a spot in the Austrian team.

"The question was do I fight by myself and finance everything from my own wallet, or do I just quit my career?

"Nordic combined was a passion of mine from my childhood years on, therefore quitting was not an option for me. 

"I have the feeling that I have not yet reached my peak."