The meaning of Olesia is 'holy' and the name is of Russian origin. It comes from the Greek given name Oleksandra which is derived from the Greek name Alexandros, which means 'defending men'. It is composed of the Greek elements, 'alexo', meaning 'to defend, help' and 'aner', meaning 'man'. 'Olesia' was the name of a novel written in 1898 by Aleksandr Kuprin. In present day, this name is famously borne by Olesya Aliyeva, who was a Russian former alpine skier. He competed in the Winter Olympics in 1998 and 2006. Another athlete with the name is Oleysa Bakunova, a sprint canoer.