A nude athlete is seated on a base in a naturalistic way, showing the precise study of the male muscle structure. The relaxed and easy attitude of the “Athlete” is in contrast with the tense attitudes of other works by Rodin. Only an athlete could adopt this pose which came so naturally to the athlete, who concentrated before performing his feat.
A comparison between this sculpture and Rodin’s “Thinker” shows the change in the artist’s aesthetic at the turn of the century. The “Athlete” gives the impression of relaxed strength, where a balance has been found between the physical and the spiritual.