Superstar sisters Venus and Serena Williams aren’t just in-sync on the tennis court, they’re also fiercely loyal to each other when it comes to real life—and defending any negative remarks that might be throw their way.
“Serena has been through a lot because of her physique,” Venus shared last week at New York’s Nike headquarters. The tennis iconic was part of a panel celebrating the launch of Dove’s new partnership with Nike, the Body Confident Sport coaching program. “And her body is a chiseled, god-made body—the craziest body to hit planet Earth!”
Co-developed by the two brands over the course of two years, in partnership with world-renowned experts—including the Centre for Appearance Research and the Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport—the campaign addresses new findings on how the sports environment impacts girls’ body confidence and self-esteem.
One startling stat: In the U.S., 48 percent of girls who drop out of sports were told they don’t have the right body, while 56 percent were objectified or judged on their physical appearance.
Working in partnership with Dove, the tennis champion and entrepreneur stressed the message on a bigger scale as well: “In sports, girls often face a tremendous amount of pressure—not just around performance and abilities, but also because of unrealistic expectations around their appearances. I am excited to be working with Dove on this initiative to help nurture girls’ self-belief and confidence, foster a positive environment, and shift the conversation from appearance to capability. Our shared goal is to make sports a more inclusive, welcoming space for girls everywhere.”
William was also quick to credit her mom for helping instill confidence in her own career: “I had strong role models in my parents—especially my mom. She always said, ‘Don’t ever let anyone tell you what to wear.’ The same went for anyone telling you how to feel and how to think; I had a great opportunity growing up to embrace that.”