Whether they're top stars of their sport or they're changing the way the game's played, these are the most influential current athletes. Keep in mind, simply being the best isn't the only thing that constitutes an influential athlete. While these stars are certainly at the top of their class, they're also recognized for the contributions they make to the world of sports, among many other factors and achievements. All things considered, who do you think are the most influential athletes right now? Could they go down as the most influential athletes of all time?
When it comes to iconic athletes, no player may be making headlines and dominating their sport more than Lebron James. He breaks a record almost any time he steps on the court, making him one of the best current NBA players, as well as of all time. Tiger Woods, Roger Federer, and the MLB's Mike Trout are really no different. These star athletes continually prove themselves to be the best out right now—and they continue to contribute to their sport. Of course, there are plenty more names to consider in determining the most influential athletes actively competing.
Check out the list of notable athletes below and vote up the sports stars you think are influencing generations and players to come. Also feel free to add others that may be missing from the list.
Birthplace: Nyagan, RussiaMaria Yuryevna Sharapova (Russian: Мари́я Ю́рьевна Шара́пова, IPA: [mɐˈrʲijə ˈjʉrʲjɪvnə... more on Wikipedia
Mikaela ShiffrinAge: 25
Birthplace: Vail, ColoradoMikaela Pauline Shiffrin is an American World Cup alpine ski racer with the U.S. Ski Team,... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Heppenheim, GermanySebastian Vettel (German pronunciation: [zeˈbasti̯an ˈfɛtl̩]; born 3 July 1987) is a German... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Gelsenkirchen, GermanyManuel Peter Neuer (German pronunciation: [ˈmaːnu̯eːl ˈnɔʏ.ɐ, -ɛl -]; born 27 March 1986) is a... more on Wikipedia
Dafne SchippersAge: 28
Birthplace: Utrecht, Kingdom of the NetherlandsDafne Schippers is a Dutch athlete competing in heptathlon and the sprints.
Charlotte KallaAge: 32
Birthplace: Santo António, PortugalCristiano Ronaldo dos Santos Aveiro GOIH ComM (born 5 February 1985) is a Portuguese... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Pécs, HungaryKatinka Hosszú (Hungarian: [ˈkɒtiŋkɒ ˈhossuː]; born 3 May 1989) is a Hungarian competitive... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Basel, Switzerland← Roger Federer (German pronunciation: [ˈrɔdʒər ˈfeːdərər]; born 8 August 1981) is a Swiss... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Belgrade, SerbiaNovak Djokovic (Serbian: Новак Ђоковић, romanized: Novak Đoković, pronounced [nôʋaːk... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Ehringshausen, GermanyGesa Felicitas Krause is a German athlete who specialises in the 3000 m steeplechase. In the... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: USA, CaliforniaRonda Jean Rousey (; born February 1, 1987) is an American professional wrestler, actress,... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Garmisch-Partenkirchen, GermanyLaura Dahlmeier is a German biathlete. Dahlmeier started in her first world cup races in the... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Manacor, SpainRafael "Rafa" Nadal Parera (Catalan: [rəf(ə)ˈɛl nəˈðal pəˈɾeɾə], Spanish: [rafaˈel naˈðal... more on Wikipedia
Brooke HendersonAge: 23
Birthplace: Smiths Falls, CanadaBrooke Mackenzie Henderson (born 10 September 1997) is a Canadian professional golfer on the... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Stevenage, United KingdomLewis Carl Davidson Hamilton (born 7 January 1985) is a British racing driver who races in... more on Wikipedia
Birthplace: Sherwood Content, JamaicaUsain St Leo Bolt (; born 21 August 1986) is a retired Jamaican sprinter. He is a world... more on Wikipedia
Annemiek van Vleuten