ESPN Body Issue: Celebrating Fit Not Thin
The release of ESPN Magazine’s Body Issue does not only mean getting to gawk at our favorite athletes baring it all, it gives us a chance to be inspired. Some may be inspired by the images as fitness motivation, but others may be inspired by the words of the athletes represented. Regardless of how these images inspire you, it is safe to say that viewing these spreads in a positive light and promoting them in a similar fashion can greatly benefit how people begin to accept their own body image and physical appearance.
In our society there is a constant redefinition of what is beautiful, and in this issue, Hilary Knight redefines strength and power with the beauty it deserves. In the words of Hilary, “Women in general, we tend to shrink ourselves and not have as much confidence as we should in presenting ourselves and our body types. It’s OK to be fit and healthy and comfortable within your body, whatever frame you have.”
While keeping a diet and working out regularly should be a goal on everyone’s mind, physical appearance should not. These actions should be taken for health alone and should not in any way demote a woman’s confidence. Not all women are meant to be the same shape, size or build. Hilary inspired us all with her strong, beautiful physique, giving us enough reasons in the photos alone why there should be no shame in a muscular body.
Beauty and confidence come from strength, both physical and mental. All women have the power to be strong, and as we look through the pages of the Body Issue we should remember that the strength isn’t in their physique, it is in their ability to say they are “proud and happy with being a female athlete.”