In this Feb. 3, 2017, file photo, Aly Raisman attends ESPN: The y in 2017 in Houston, Texas.
Olympic gold medalist Aly Raisman has stripped down for Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit issue.
The Olympic gymnast has joined the magazine feature “In Her Own Words,” in which the model poses nude with inspirational words and phrases such as “trust yourself,” “live for you” and “abuse is never good,” written on her body.
IN HER OWN WORDS: @alyraisman is a SURVIVOR and proud of it. #SISwim 2018
The move comes after Raisman made headlines recently for presenting a powerful 13-minute testimony against Larry Nassar, in which she directly told the former Olympic doctor, “You are nothing.”
Nassar was sentenced to a maximum 175 years in prison after he was convicted for the sexual abuse of more than 150 women.
“I want to remind everyone that being a survivor is nothing to be ashamed of, and going through a difficult time does not define you,” Raisman said to SI Swimming. “I hope that one day we to a point in which everyone realizes that women do not need to modest to be respected. We are free to draw confidence and happiness in our own way, and it is never for someone else to choose for us, or even judge us for that matter.”
Raisman joins the ranks of the Sailor Brinkley Cook, Paulina Porizkova, and Robyn Lawley, who are also to be found in the Sports Illustrated Swim spread that is intended to celebrate and promote various types, according to SI Swim editor MJ Day.
“For me, ‘In Her Own Words” serves as a reminder of the fact that we are all humans, we are all fighting something, and it is OK not” Raisman said. “We are not alone and we need each other.”
The Sports Illustrated Swimsuit issue drew opposition against those who have mocked the magazine for the attempt to empower women by having them pose nude.
In addition to posing for SI, the gymnast has also been associated with American Eagle lingerie brand Aerie, which the campaign has the un-retouched images to help promote body positivity and acceptance.
“You lose a part of yourself when you are abused,” Raisman recently told People. “I lost a part of myself, and I get it back by speaking.”
The gymnast added, “I’m starting to realize how strong I am and I will not keep silence.”
You can find Morgan M. Evans on Twitter @themizfactor.