It’s pretty much a given that if you dedicate your life to athletic endeavors that your body will respond in a magnificent way. We see male athletes recognized all of the time for their physical prowess, so now let’s take a moment to look at 12 of the most STUNNING female athletes in the world. There is a notion that women don’t play ‘real’ or ‘competitive’ sports, so be prepared to have your mind blown. Ranging from tennis stars to MMA fighters, these girls have found success both in competition and posed for photoshoots. Keep your eyes glued to this list because these 12 stunning female athletes will get your jaw to drop.
Lokelani McMichael isn’t just a beautiful first name, she’s also a Hawaiian born Ironman who was the youngest to ever finish the popular race. Her parents own a surf shop out in Kailua-Kona, where the Ironman originates, and this served as her first taste of the sport. As a triathlete McMichael has seen intermittent success but as a model she has left the competition in the dust: appearing in GQ, Men’s Health, Shape Magazine, and even Runner’s World. Lokelani is in the Guinness Book of World Records thanks to her completed Ironman at just the age of 18. Only 2,000 people ever get to run the event in a year and she had to beat out over 48,000 for the opportunity so you can guarantee that she isn’t going to take the success afterward for granted.
Get used to seeing Russian beauties on this list as Tatiana Golovin will not be the last. This Russian/French tennis player made it to the big time when she pulled down her French Open doubles win back in 2004. Golovin also made it to the 2008 Beijing Olympics but a back injury that later end her career cropped up, forcing her to withdraw.Since then she has risen as high as #12 overall in the female tennis rankings before being forced to retire early due to a back injury. Golovin now works as a French tennis commentator and she is expecting her first child with Hugo Bonneval, a rugby player in France. Golovin has two other sisters, Olga and Oxana.
Gina Carano was to MMA/Kickboxing back in 2006 what Ronda Rousey is to the sport today. The former MMA fighter blazed through her three years by winning 20 of her 21 total matches. The 5’8 powerhouse bombshell quickly ‘made it’ in the pop culture world due to her beauty and sheer power in the ring. Now Carano is a consistent performer in both television and film with starring roles in Fast & Furious, Haywire, and the upcoming Marvel movie Deadpool. Where most athletes start to fade after their playing days, Carano only seems to be getting more and more popular. Carano has also made appearances in Maxim and ESPN The Magazine.
Skylar Diggins is a 25 year old professional WNBA player for the Tulsa Shock. The 5’9 South Bend native made it to the pro’s after a successful career at Notre Dame. She’s also made headlines for getting the attention of Drake, albeit in a joking manner as the rapper posted on a picture of Diggins and her boyfriend, “Can I dig in?” Still, the basketball beauty continues to make headlines for both her looks and her skills on the court, winning the WNBA ESPY Award. Diggins has also made it on TV in the series ‘Wild ‘n Out’ as a Team Captain. When she’s not dealing with basketball she is campaigning to stop childhood obesity. Diggins is also a model represented by Roc Nation and she has credits with Sports Illustrated and Vogue on her resume.
LoLo Jones, like so many of the other beautiful women on this list, rose to prominence during the 2008 Beijing Olympics. In the NCAA LoLo Jones was a track athlete with special focus in both hurdles and the bobsled. She was the hands up favorite in the ’08 Beijing Olympics in the 100 meter hurdles but tripped on the final hurdle, finishing in last. Her career as an athlete took a backseat as she rocketed into the public zeitgeist. The beautiful brunette is the most popular track athlete on Twitter and has now become a popular model, posing for ESPN among other publications. Jones has also made it into the film and TV industry by starring in the Left Behind movie series as well as Dancing with the Stars. Not bad for a 7th place finisher during the Olympics, right?
Here we have one of the toughest women on the planet. Ronda Rousey is as powerful as she is beautiful and she has the mat work to prove it. Rousey is a 28 year old MMA fighter for the UFC and she hails from Riverside, California. She’s trained in both Judo and boxing and she’s been active in the MMA world since 2011. Over that time span Rousey has gone 15 – 0 with 9 of those bouts coming via submission and 3 coming from knockout. Rousey has also crossed over into the world of film with roles in Furious 7, Entourage, and The Ellen DeGeneres Show. Rousey also holds the title of the highest paid UFC athlete, beating out any of the men.
Leading off our run of Russian tennis players is Anna Kournikova. At 5’8 with long blonde hair, Kournikova is a blur of bright power on the clay. She holds a 209 – 129 career record with 6 career Grand Slam titles in her name. At one point she was so popular that her name was among the most searched keywords in the entire world. Kournikova has done a ton after leaving the tennis world as she’s become host of The Biggest Loser, turned into a philanthropist, and begun her focus on the “Five & Alive” program.
While surfing is a relatively niche sport, professional surfer Anastasia Ashley definitely has some major market appeal. Ashley began surfing at just five years old and by the time she was six she was competing in contests and by age seven she was sponsored. She was the Triple Crown Rookie of the Year and a major title winner by age 16. Not only has surfing come easy to her, but the California native has been all over the pop culture world. Ashley has been in Sports Illustrated, Maxim Magazine, and even racked up at an appearance on the hit TV show Hell’s Kitchen.
Tall blonde and beautiful, Maria Sharapova is one of the most elite athletes in the world of female tennis. The 6’2 blonde made her pro debut in 2001 at the age of 14 in the Junior Rankings. Since then she has gone on to win five Grand Slams whilst becoming the #1 female tennis player on the planet. As one of the greatest players of all time, as well as one of the most beautiful, Vonn never ached for attention from the modeling world. The Russian born model has appeared in just about every big brand in the world, modeling for them all.
Lindsey Vonn needs no introduction but we’ll break down this superstar for you anyway. Vonn is an elite downhill skier with experience in several different event disciplines including downhill and slalom racing. The 5’10 blonde bombshell quickly made waves after entering into professional competition as a 16 year old. She has won four different World Cup Championships, seven seasonal titles, and a gold medal to top it all off. Vonn has had high profile relationships with other huge athletes including Tiger Woods and Thomas Vonn (ex-husband). To cap off her elite hottness Vonn has also appeared in the Swimsuit Edition for Sports Illustrated and Maxim’s Hot 100.
Alex Rodriguez watch out, you have a player turned Maxim Model thirsting after you! Bianca Cruz used to play professional softball but she struggled there and turned to modeling after becoming something of an internet sensation. Cruz did have massive success at Arizona State, a large school for women’s softball, so it’s not like she rose to fame purely on her looks. Cruz was a semifinalist in Maxim’s Hometown Hotties contest and she admitted to having a huge crush on New York Yankees 3B Alex Rodriguez.
Leryn Franco is a Paraguayan athlete known for her work as a javelin thrower in the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Franco rose to fame and quickly went viral on the internet. Since then she has appeared in the vaunted Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition as well as the Miss Bikini of the Universe pageant. The beautiful athlete has made a full pivot toward modeling and now can be seen in magazines all over the world. She has a Business Administration degree and also played football well before ever becoming interested in the javelin throw.