The Best Videos and Photos of the Bodies of Olympic Athletes


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Every Olympic year, a slew of newspapers, magazines, and websites put out photos of scantily clad or completely nude Olympians. Outside did it this year with pictures of Lolo Jones by Robert Maxwell and Trey Hardee by Carlos Serrao. Most publications do it tastefully, in a way that shows off the distinctly developed features of athletes who dedicate themselves to train for one event or sport. Here's a quick round-up of some of the best photos and videos of Olympic bodies taken before the 2012 London Olympics.

The Olympic Body, Kate Peters for The Guardian
A narrated video showing behind-the-scenes footage of 31 British Olympic athletes, a gallery, and an interactive photo slideshow

Olympic Bodies. Photo: Kate Peters for The Guardian

Martin Schoeller + Olympians, Martin Schoeller for Time and Women's Health
Portraits and action shots of the best United States Olympians, with a gallery and behind the scenes video of his session with Ryan Lochte.

Ryan Lochte. Photo: Martin Schoeller for Time

The Body Issue, Various Photographers for ESPN The Magazine
Portraits and behind-the-scenes videos of everyone from the United States Olympic women's volleyball team to Abby Wambach to Carmelita Jeter accompany photos of athletes from sports from the NFL to surfing.

The Gold Standard: James Nachtwey Shoots China's Women's Weightlifters, James Nachtwey for Time
The famed war photographer shoots the team expected to dominate in London as they train in China.

Train Like an Olympian, Carlos Serrao for Outside
A gallery and behind-the-scenes video of Olympic decathlete Trey Hardee training for London 2012.

Women Olympians, Robert Maxwell, Outside and Whole Living
Photos and a behind-the-scenes video of Lolo Jones appeared in Outside. The photographer also took portraits and videos of everyone from Allyson Felix to Kerri Walsh for Whole Living.

To test out your knowledge of Olympic bodies and injury, check out The Well Quiz: Olympic Bodies.

—Joe Spring