Greatest Sports Comebacks by Moms
Former world number one Kim Clijsters is returning to tennis — again — after stepping away from the sport to embrace motherhood. Here are other women athletes who dominated in their sport after having kids. 🎾⚽
Athletes managing their careers as parents
3-time Grand Slam winner Kim Clijsters is returning to tennis after motherhood inspired a 7-year absence. Several decorated athletes have returned to find glory on the highest stages after entering motherhood.
After defeating her sister Venus at the 2017 Australian Open while 8 weeks pregnant, Serena Williams almost died in childbirth, spending weeks on bedrest and going through postpartum depression. The 23-time Grand Slam champ made her return to tennis 12 months later, where she won her first match back, and later on became the oldest Grand Slam finalist.
Christie Pearce Rampone
2-time World Cup winner Christie Rampone made not two successful comebacks to soccer after having children. When her first daughter was born in 2005, Rampone played her first comeback game less than four months later. After having her second daughter in 2010, she went on to finish second place at the 2011 Women’s World Cup — and won the gold with the U.S. as captain for the 2012 London Olympics and the 2015 Women’s World Cup.
After winning gold at the World Indoor Championship for her 60m hurdles in 2014, Nia Ali took off from track to give birth to her son in 2015. At the 2016 World Indoor Championship, she defended her title, and later that year won a silver medal for 100m at the 2016 Rio De Janeiro Olympics.
Kerri Walsh Jennings
After winning two Olympic gold medals for beach volleyball in 2004 and 2008, Kerri Walsh Jennings took a break for the birth of her sons. Jennings was 5 weeks pregnant with her daughter as she returned to win another beach volleyball gold at the 2012 London Olympics. She retired with the most women’s career tournament victories according to the Beach Volleyball Database.