Perusing a list of 10 famous female athletes introduces the reader to sports greats from tennis, gymnastics and also some athletic endeavors that are not typically associated with women’s sports. Each of these female competitors was at one point a heavy hitter in the field.
- Chris Evert starts off the list of famous female athletes. She is a tennis pro who actually once ranked as the world’s greatest professional female player. A regular at the French Open, she has holds seven championship titles from that event.
- Jackie Joyner-Kersee was hailed the “Greatest Female Athlete of the 20th Century” by Sports Illustrated for Women. She is a medaling Olympian who has excelled at the long jump and also the heptathlon. It is a little known fact that her brother is Al Joyner, another medaling Olympian.
- Shawn Johnson is a world-renowned gymnast. Her 2008 specialty was the balance beam but she can also cut a rug with aplomb. Not surprisingly, her appearance on season eight of "Dancing with the Stars" was a hit.
- Cha Cha Muldowney graces the list of famous female athletes as the “First Lady of Drag Racing.” Formally known as Shirley Muldowney, she broke the NHRA glass ceiling and has thus far won eighteen national titles.
- Serena Williams is must-see tennis great. She is a Wimbledon singles champion and French Open doubles winner. Of course, her older sister is nothing to sneeze at either.
- Venus Williams is the older sister of Serena, but even so she holds her own. At this time she has played in 11 US Open events, holds 43 careers singles titles and has earned a total of $27,290,546.00 in prize money.
- Mia Hamm continues the list of the famous female athletes. Even though soccer is only gradually entering the American mainstream, Hamm is already a household name. Of course, it didn’t hurt that FIFA awarded her the world player of the year honors in 2001 and 2002.
- Nadia Comaneci is a Romanian gymnast. Her medaling Olympics performance propelled her into a league of her own: she is the first gymnast who ever received a perfect score.
- Marion Jones was at the top of her career in track and field, when in 2000 she became embroiled in a steroids scandal. Doping would follow her professionally and also personally, making her one of the more tragic sports figures.
- Last but not least on the list of famous female athletes is Angela Ruggiero. She is an ice hockey player who also appeared on "The Apprentice". Another glass ceiling breaker, she and her brother actually played as a brother-sister combo for the Oilers.
While this list of ten famous female athletes is by no means exhaustive, it most certainly highlights some of the best competitors that sports have to offer.