Who is the fittest athlete in the world right now? It’s a question that’s often debated in households, workplaces, and pubs throughout the globe producing a multitude of answers.
Well, we appear to have a definitive answer now, as the experts over at Sport’s Illustrated - ‘a panel of trainers, exercise physiologists and performance experts’ - have put their heads together and compiled a list of the Top-25 Fittest Males, and the Top-25 Fittest Females in the world over the last 12 months.
Top of the Male category is New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley, aged just 21. He’s enjoyed a remarkable rise since he was drafted last year, bagging the ‘Offensive Rookie of the Year Award’ awarded by the Pro Football Writers of America, while he can run the 40-yard dash in just 4.40 seconds, and bench press 225 pounds for 29 reps...
Barkley, who recently became only the third rookie in NFL history to cross the 2,000-yard mark (2,028 yards), previously told ESPN:
“Being strong but also being athletic and still working on movement. That kind of just changed me, I guess. I got faster, I got more explosive, my first step got quicker, my burst got quicker, and it all just came together.”
Given his ultra-competitiveness, fitness fanatic Cristiano Ronaldo will be gutted at being pipped to top-spot, but there’s no doubting that 33-year-old Juventus star is an absolute physical specimen in stunning shape who continues to dominate the football world.
Milwaukee Bucks 6’11” basketball player Giannis Antetokounmpo (3rd), tennis star Novak Djokovic (4th), and French Decathlete Kevin Mayer make up the top-five.
Other notable names in the top-10 include the iconic Lebron James (7th), Conor McGregor (9th), and Canelo Alvarez (10th), whereas the Ballon d’Or winner Luka Modric is 12th, ahead of the greatest marathoner of all time, Eliud Kipchoge (21st), with Tour de France victor Geraint Thomas 24th.
Simone Biles grabs the spoils in Sport’s Illustrated list of the Top-25 Female athletes in the world over the past year. The diminutive 4'9" American sensation is an absolute force on the gymnastics arena, with her incredible combination of speed, power, and strength seeing the 21-year-old become the first woman to win four all-round world titles.
IAAF’s Female Athlete of the Year in 2018, Caterine Ibarguen, is an athletics phenomen, participating in not one, not two, but three jumping events: High, Long, and Triple. The 34-year-old Colombian won a shed load of events, two of which came within the space of 24 hours in different cities.
Crossfit star Tia-Clair Toomey was third, British sprinter Dina Asher-Smith fourth, while triathlete/marathoner Gwen Jorgensen made up the top-five.
Other prominent figures in the top-25 include UFC’s Amana Nunes (7th), Serena Williams (10th), Caster Semenya (13th), and Caroline Wozniacki (22nd).
For the full lists in both the male and female categories, click on the link featured in the second paragraph of this article.