Sports Illustrated in run up to the 2010 Vancouver Olympics ran a spread featuring four Olympians: Lindsey Vonn, Hannah Teter, Clair Bidez, and Lacy Schnoor in little more than their underwear.
This spread created a mostly positive reaction, but some internet bloggers spoke out against the overly sexy nature of the photos, a disrespect of the institution of the Olympic games and some even accused the women of cashing in on the moment for a little publicity.
Responding to the criticism, Hannah Teter said "I don't believe in the criminalization of bodies and women having to be ashamed of their bodies. That's just so wrong."
I can’t speak to their ultimate motivations. But lets analyze the facts: we had four adult women with strong athletic bodies, they are obviously very proud of. They made a conscious decision to take part in the shoot.
These women are also highly accomplished: Vonn and Teter have Olympic Gold Medals, while Bidez and Schnoor have carved out amazing careers that send them traveling throughout the world.
What a great message for young women growing up that they can be both sexy and successful.