Miwa Asao swaps beach volleyball gear for glamour of Paris fashion week
Pro beach volleyball star Miwa Asao, 22, showed off the dress she will make her Paris Fashion Week debut in, at a Tokyo hotel this week. World-renowned fashion designer Yumi Katsura, 76, spent half a year completing the dress worth approximately 5 million yen. Katsura said she was inspired by the passion of American actress-singer Liza Minnelli, and designed it in the image of a young bird cruising through the sky.
Miwa Asao expressed her concerns about modeling in the Spring-Summer 2009 event on Jan 27, but said she was happy to be chosen. She also said: “It’s a really beautiful dress. When I saw myself in it, and with the make-up done for me, I thought I looked like an adult.”
Katsura said: “I wanted someone with beautiful legs for the short dress, and tailored it to suit Miwa Asao’s great body.”
Miwa Asao 浅尾 美和 (JPN, Beach Volleyball Beauty)
For our next Superb Senora, we turn to the Land of the Rising Sun and the sport of Beach Volleyball.
In recent years, beach volleyball has grown exponentially in terms of popularity. From its awkward roots in the movie Top Gun (where Maverick and Goose played an intense pick-up game against Iceman and Slider, well not really. I just couldn’t let writing about beach volleyball pass without referencing one of my favorite movies of all-time!), beach volleyball became an Olympic sport in 1996.
A Mainichi Daily News article on Miwa Asao credits the 24-year old with putting “beach volleyball on the map” but also expresses fear that Japan’s foremost beach volleyball icon is “overexposed” in light of her commitments in the media and her “excessively skimpy swimsuits.” In fact, Miwa Asao missed the 2008 Beijing Olympics since she and her partner were ranked 44th in the world at that time, below the required top 24 for Olympic competition.
In sport, an Anna Kournikova is needed to pave the way for a Maria Sharapova. Who knows? Miwa Asao is still relatively young. Her moment of (sporting) glory is yet to come. But for now, what makes her superb is her being larger-than-life icon for her respective sport.
Asao competing in Norway in 2008
Full name Miwa Asao
Miwa Asao Born 2 February 1986 (1986-02-02) (age 25)
Suzuka, Mie, Japan
Miwa Asao Height 1.72 m (5 ft 8 in)
Miwa Asao Weight 53 kg (120 lb)
Miwa Asao Beach volleyball information
Miwa AsaoCurrent teammate
Miwa Asao (浅尾 美和, Asao Miwa?, born 2 February 1986, Suzuka, Mie) is a female Japanese beach volleyball player. Often referred to in media reports as the “pixie of beach volleyball” or simply “pixie of the beach” for her good looks, Miwa Asao has helped to popularize beach volleyball in Japan while herself becoming a national celebrity through her numerous appearances on television and in magazines and newspapers.