Some of the Healthiest Images From SI's Swimsuit Issue Over the Years
From Serena Williams to Mr. and Mrs. Allan Houston, a look at the best bodies in sports
Every year, Sports Illustrated's Swimsuit Issue generates buzz for the newest "it" girl to grace the cover but there is more to the magazine than just eye candy on sunny beaches. Over the years, SI has captured plenty of positive images of both women and couples. Here are some of the best.
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Steffi Graf (1997)
In 1997 Steffi Graf, who with 107 women’s singles titles is one of the most successful tennis players in history, posed for the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue. Her earnestness on the court made some view her as unapproachable. Her images in the magazine helped change that, while also showing off some of the most amazing calves in all of sports. At least Brooke Shields once thought so. Ironically, Graf would end up marrying Shields’ ex-husband Andre Agassi.
Gabrielle Reece (1997)
A former professional volleyball player, Reece has successfully bridged the worlds of sports and modeling for more than two decades. This image is from her 1997 appearance in the swimsuit issue.
Allan and Tamara Houston (1999)
In addition to winning a gold medal at the 2000 Olympic Games, Allan Houston enjoyed a successful career in the NBA as part of the Detroit Pistons and New York Knicks. In 1999, he and his wife Tamara posed for a couples portrait in the swimsuit issue.
Nikki McCray (1999)
In addition to earning two Olympic gold medals, as part of the American women’s basketball team, McCray played eight successful seasons in the WNBA. In 1999 she showed off her healthy figure and the moves that made her a star on the court in this portrait with now husband Thomas Penson.
Bill and Julie Romanowski (2000)
After stints with the San Francisco 49ers and Philadelphia Eagles, NFL vet Romanowski posed for this striking couple’s portrait for the Sports Illustrated swimsuit edition with his wife Julie in 2000, during his tenure with the Denver Broncos.
Shaun and Valerie Alexander (2003)
The retired NFL running back, known for his devout Christianity, posed with wife Valerie for the swimsuit issue in 2003
Ben and Julie Crenshaw (2000)
Crenshaw is best known as a former world top ten professional golfer. In 2000 he posed for the swimsuit issue with his wife Julie.
Serena Williams (2003)
Williams is one of the few tennis players of either gender to have won the Grand Slam (French Open, Wimbledon, the US Open, Australian Open.) In 2003 she showed a much softer side than the all-business competitor we’re used to seeing on the court in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit edition.