The ‘ESPN The Magazine Body Issue’ is heading for newsstands on July 7th, with images of 23 athletes who ‘bare it all’ or are ‘in the buff’. Stars like Dallas Cowboys running back Ezekiel Elliott, Chicago Cubs infielder Javier Baez, and Boston Celtics guard Isaiah Thomas.
ESPN Body Issue 2017 pic.twitter.com/pMSGIVBiRL
— Ezekiel Elliott (@EzekielElliott) June 26, 2017
In addition to these male athletes, female athletes such as tennis star Caroline Wozniacki and MMA fighter Michelle Waterson also appear.
ESPN The Magazine launched the BODY franchise almost a decade ago to celebrate and showcase the athletic form of beauty through powerful images and interviews. This year marks their ninth annual BODY Issue.
ESPN The Magazine editor-in-chief Alison Overholt said,
“…we wanted to do something creatively that we have never done before. We wanted fans to have that moment of awe again where they say, ‘Wow. How did they do that?’”
“We were seeing the incredible images iPhone users post on social media tagged with #shotoniphone and our team said, ‘That’s it. How about we do a BODY shoot on iPhone?’”
Photos, personal interviews and videos of the BODY athletes will debut on ESPN.com on July 5th.
As I said earlier MMA and UFC strawweight Michelle Waterson was revealed as the 5th professional athlete to pose nude for ESPN’s Body Issue.
Ms. Waterson is also known as the ‘Karate Hottie’ which is obviously clear, now that she’s stripped down for the ESPN photoshoot.
Waterson is featured on a cover which shows her throwing up a high kick as she faces away from the camera. Of course, you don’t see much of anything, as her arms and legs were strategically placed in the poses from the photoshoot.
In an interview with ESPN, the ‘Karate Hottie’ stated,
“I like my Karate Hottie nickname. I think it’s catchy. I don’t mind saying that I’m hot. If you want to underestimate your opponent [because of her nickname], for sure, go ahead.”
Although Waterson enjoys her nickname, her top priority is not about being sexy, as she explains,
“Your body changes [doing MMA]. You lose body fat, and that means you lose breast tissue. Your shoulders get broad, and you get scraped from the gloves. I do it because I love to do it.”
Waterson goes on to state, as far as being sexy,
“I could definitely be doing something else if I just wanted to look hot.”
Michelle is 31, married and has a 6-year-old daughter, Araya.
Of her pregnancy Waterson said,
“For a long time, I was embarrassed about my stretch marks (from the pregnancy). Now I embrace them, because for me it was like this nest that I created to grow this little human in my body, and I’m proud of that. They are like my battle wounds.”
What a great way for a female to look at stretch marks left from one’s pregnancy.
Speaking of pregnancy, Michelle added,
“There is nothing that compares to the pain of childbirth. On a scale of 1-10, any pain I’ve taken in the ring would rank a 6, and childbirth is a 10. Now I know that if I can get through 12 hours of labor, then I can get through a 25-minute fight.”
Amen, sister. Amen.
If you want to read more about the 23 athletes who ‘bare it all’ or are ‘in the buff’, like Michelle ‘Karate Hottie’ Waterson, you’ll have to wait until July 5th to catch it on ESPN.com. Or check out the ESPN Magazine’s Annual Body Issue 2017 also on newsstands on July 7th.