6 Photos of Muay Thai Fighter and Model Search Winner Mia Kang in Mexico

The author and body confidence guru returned to the fold as a rookie in 2017.
Mia Kang was photographed by Ruven Afanador in Mexico.

Mia Kang was photographed by Ruven Afanador in Mexico.

After winning SI Swimsuit’s Model Search in 2016, Muay Thai fighter Mia Kang earned her rookie spot in the ’17 magazine. She posed for photographer Ruven Afanador in Mexico, where she was captured on the beach and among lush greenery. The mental health advocate is an outspoken body confidence advocate who is open about her experience as an eating disorder survivor.

“It’s hard to be a woman today. We are under such extreme pressure,” Kang told SELF through tears the same year of her SI Swimsuit feature in Mexico. “It doesn’t need to be this way, it really doesn’t need to be this way, and I feel like I’ve lost so much of my youth, you know, just hating myself and succumbing to this pressure, and all I want to do is help women learn to love themselves.”

The 34-year-old model, author and fighter continues to use her platform to uplift other women. In honor of her inspirational message of self-love, we’re throwing it back to six of our favorite pics from her SI Swimsuit photoshoot in Mexico.


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Cara O’Bleness


Cara is a trending news writer/editor for Sports Illustrated Swimsuit. A passionate writer and editor with more than 10 years of experience in print and online media, she loves storytelling and believes that words have the power to change the world. Prior to joining the team, Cara worked as a writer and editor across a number of content verticals, including food, lifestyle, health and wellness, and small business and entrepreneurship. In her free time, Cara loves reading, spending time with her family and making her way through Michigan’s many microbreweries. She is a graduate of Michigan State University's School of Journalism.