Here at TheSportster, we don’t care what floats your boat, toots your horn, butters your muffin, sizzles your bacon, or bakes your cake. The LGBT movement has fought tooth and nail for a long time and they deserve a lot of credit for the changes they helped make within many countries, institutions, communities, and organizations. They’re still fighting to this today, because news flash, anti laws are still prevalent in modern day cultures.
That’s why we applaud these beautiful athletes for coming out as they did and letting people know they’re not afraid. It’s a courageous act and you should know who these athletes are. Many of the athletes are retired today but that doesn’t mean we can’t still recognize their bravery. Some have lost endorsement deals for their preference and others have felt the wrath of anti-gay heat. For those that don’t agree with their choices because of their religion or personal experience, we understand, it’s not for everyone, but there's absolutely no need to get upset about it as long as they're not interfering with your right to practice what you wish.
Without further ado, here 15 female athletes that enjoy the company of male and female partners, enjoy!
15 Ireen Wüst
One of the fastest humans on the ice, Wüst specializes in long track all-round speed skating. Representing Netherlands, she won a gold medal in the 3000-meter event at the 2006 Winter Olympics. During the 2010 Winter Olympics, she would win the 1500-meter event. Her success doesn’t end there as she won two gold and three silver medals at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games. In 2009, she came out as being bisexual and in a relationship with Sanne van Kerkhof, another speed skater.
The relationship ended and she became involved with an unknown male recently. Besides the fact that she destroyed the competition at the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, the media and internet were out in full force to cover her being hugged by Russia’s President Vladimir Putin, who signed an anti-gay legislation in 2013.
14 Yoko Yamada
Yoko Yamada is one of the most athletic and multi-talented athletes you’ll ever find on the planet. She has found success in women’s arm wrestling, professional wrestling, mixed-martial-arts, and shoot boxing. Her biggest achievements came from arm wrestling where she has won multiple World Championships representing Japan. Her record in MMA isn’t too shabby either, posting a 6-1 professional record. She’s basically a bad ass that can go toe-to-toe with anyone. Known as “The Sturdy Arm,” she has also worked as a model and hosted an online show called Yoko Yamada’s Happy Girl.
13 Mayssa Pessoa
A handball goalkeeper for Macedonia's ŽRK Vardar and a team member of Brazil’s national team, Pessoa is excellent at her craft. She’s won gold at several competitions, such as the Pan American Games in 2015 and the IHF World Women’s Handball Championship in 2013. More recently, she helped CSM Bucuresti win the Romanian National League the past two years. Her bisexuality was known during the 2012 Olympic Games but she has spoken more recently about her sexuality during an interview this past year. Apparently she might be getting some heat from anti-gay opposition over in Romania. They need to seriously eat a bag of New Day’s Booty-Os.
12 Victoria Galindo
She has found success at every level of her sport. From high school, through college, and then onto the World Cup, Galindo has helped contribute in numerous ways for her teams. Playing for the Golden Bears of the University of California from ’03-‘05, Galindo racked up numerous awards and helped them reach the Women’s College World Series her senior year. She helped USA win the gold at both the ‘06 and ‘07 Women’s Softball World Championships. She now teaches and coaches softball for the West Valley Vikings. In ‘08, Galindo’s sexuality became public weeks before the Beijing Olympics when several athletes decided to come out.
11 Linda Bresonik
A solid soccer player throughout her career, Linda Bresonik first tasted international success when she helped Germany in the UEFA Women’s Under-19 Championship in 2000. Her debut on the senior national team came a year later against Italy. The national team would go on to win the 2001 European Championship. Her success with Germany didn’t end there, winning the 2007 FIFA Women’s World Cup, obtaining a bronze medal at the 2008 Summer Olympics, and claiming another European Championship in ’09. Her personal life didn’t come public until a love triangle was exposed between herself, her teammate Inka Grings, and their coach, Holger Fachs.
10 Kajsa Bergqvist
One of the best track and field stars from Europe, she represented Sweden at the 2000 Summer Olympic Games, winning the bronze medal in the High Jump. Her talents in the competition earned her multiple medals in World and European competitions. She won the gold in ’01 and ’03 at the World Indoor Championships in Athletics. Bergqvist also won gold in ’05 at the International Association of Athletics Federation World Championships in Athletics. After divorcing Måns Herngren in 2011, she came out as a bisexual the same year in an interview. After her retirement, she became an ambassador for both the IAAF and United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund.
9 Nadine Angerer
Arguably one of the greatest footballers to come out of Germany, Angerer wrapped up her storied career in 2015 with the Portland Thorns. After playing second fiddle to Silke Rottenberg on the German’s national team for ten years, Angerer got her chance to shine in the 2007 World Cup in China. She did not disappoint, setting the World Cup record for most minutes played (540) without giving up a goal. In 2013, she earned prestigious awards such as the UEFA Best Women's Player in Europe and FIFA World Player of the Year. She announced her sexuality to the public in 2010 when countryman Mario Gomez called on gay athletes to come out.
8 Mia Hundvin
Her career in handball is one of the most successful in the sport's history. Representing Norway’s national handball team, Hundvin helped her nation win the ’98 European Women’s Handball Championship, the ’99 World Women’s Handball Championship, and a bronze medal at the 2000 Olympic Games. Her sexual attraction for both men and women played out towards the end of her career when she registered for partnership with Camilla Andersen, a Danish handball player. Splitting up three years later, she was became pregnant by her partner and ‘90s top snowboarder, Terje Haakonsen. The couple has two children and they will most likely have insane hand-eye coordination skills because of their parent’s genes.
7 Rosa Mendes
Just because it’s professional wrestling doesn’t mean the wrestler isn’t an athlete. Mendes has been with WWE since 2006 when she was working for WWE’s developmental territory, Ohio Valley Wrestling. She made it to the big show in 2008, appearing as a fan on an episode of RAW. She’s had various feuds throughout the years and has been a cast member of WWE’s Total Divas television show. In 2014, she revealed that she was bisexual and was seen kissing a woman at a bar on an episode of the show. It’s also known by many in the WWE Universe about a co-worker she kissed on the show as well and she’s the next one on this list.
After a successful stint in WWE’s development show, NXT, Paige shocked the world by winning the then WWE’s Divas Championship against AJ Lee in her first match on an episode of RAW. It’s well known that Paige has a rebellious attitude and enjoys a good night out on the town, just check out her Instagram account. On top of that, Paige enjoys the company of both men and women. She explained on WWE’s television show, Total Divas, that she was attracted to both genders.
5 Inka Grings
Just like Linda Bresonik, Inka Grings was a great soccer player, representing Germany’s national team in many competitions. She scored three goals at the 1999 FIFA Women’s World Cup, helping Germany reach the quarter-finals. She helped take home the bronze at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Athens, but was hampered by injuries from 2001-’04. Making a comeback in ’05, Grings would help Germany win the European Championship by become the top-scorer. Historically, one of the best scores from Germany, Grings was caught up in publicized love triangle between herself, Bresonik, and their coach Holger Fachs.
4 Elissa Steamer
The first ever women to earn professional status in the history of skateboarding, Elissa Steamer has a long history of winning competitions. She won the gold medal in the Women’s Street event at the Summer X Games in ’04, ’05, ’06, and ’08. All you video game enthusiasts might remember her as the first female in the Tony Hawk video game series. It was in 2014 when Steamer came out as bisexual during a radio show for the publication Thrasher. With her career over, Steamer has collaborated with others on launching and distributing a new skateboard brand called Gnarhunters.
3 Martina Navratilova
A legendary athlete at the game tennis, Navratilova became a trail blazer for the sport after winning her first singles Grand Slam title in 1978. In total, she won 59 Grand Slam championships, second to Margaret Smith Court’s 62 majors. Only Billie Jean King and Steffi Graf have been talked about in the same breath as her. In 1981, she was interviewed by the New York Daily News in which she said she was bisexual. Navratilova asked the company to wait for the article to be published (she wanted to make her own public announcement first), but they decided to make it public anyway. In 2014, she married her longtime girlfriend in New York.
2 Sheryl Swoopes
The first player to ever be signed to the WNBA, Sheryl Swoopes has been a pioneer for women's basketball. She’s considered one of the greatest women to play the game and was elected into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame this year. Even though Swoopes had a child as was married from 1995-’99, she came out as a lesbian in 2005 and was applauded by advocates of the LGBT movement. After breaking up with Alisa Scott, an assistant coach for the Houston Coments when they met, Swoopes became engaged to a man in 2011.
1 Billie Jean King
Just like Navratilova, King was a trail blazer for a generation of women and their love for tennis. With a total of 39 Grand Slam titles under her belt, she was also known for beating Bobby Riggs in a Battle of the Sexes tennis match in 1973. Navratilova and Court were the only two other women to participate in this type of match, both losing to their opponents. Sadly, her sexuality became public for all the wrong reasons.
After being married to tennis player Larry King, she would have a relationship with her secretary Marilyn Barnett for many years. In 1981, King broke it off with her, which caused Barnett to file a palimony lawsuit. She’s still married to King at this point in time no less (filed for divorce in 1987).
The lawsuit caused King to go public about her sexuality, making her the first illustrious female athlete to come out. Unfortunately, this killed all of King’s endorsement deals and she had to keep on playing just so she can pay off lawyers. We will have a happy ending with this one, since then, King has become a champion and leader of LGBT rights, and is an activist to this day.