ESPN Magazine debuted their Body Issue in 2010, featuring male and female athletes out of uniform, out in fact of everything.
MMA has a played a role in each issue, with Gina Carano in 2010, Jon Jones and Cyborgs in 2011, Ronda Rousey in 2012, and now Miesha Tate in 2013:
Everyone knows the hours before a fight are nerve wracking, but In an interview with the NY Daily News, Tate said that taking your clothes off on a beach and being photographed is no walk in the park.
Ultimate Fighting Championship contender Miesha Tate says 'women in this sport are pretty.'
Miesha Tate, the 26-year-old No. 1 bantamweight contender on the women’s Ultimate Fighting Championship circuit, also wanted to use the opportunity to sweep away some stereotypes.
“One of the of the biggest common misperceptions about women’s mixed martial arts is that we’re not feminine,” she says. “So for me it’s important to show that women in this sport are comfortable about their bodies, that we’re pretty and carry ourselves as women — and we can also turn it up a notch in the cage.”
That being said, Tate admitted to being more comfortable getting kicked in the ribs than disrobing for her photo shoot on a Malibu beach.
“It was nerve-racking because even though it was a private beach, there’s still big houses all around and we had a couple of people trying to walk by the shoot,” says Tate. “They kept turning around and walking in the background and our crew kept having to hold up blinders so they wouldn’t see me."
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The issue also features National Hot Rod Association funny car driver Courtney Force and professional snowboarder Elena Hight.