Cross training, building strength and muscle for swimmers

Dec 11, 2014

Training, Strength and Muscles

Cross Training for Swimmers

An important part of a swimmer’s training takes place outside of the pool. Cross training builds strength and muscle power and provides swimmers with a break of the monotony of the black line.

Virtually any form of exercise you enjoy is a great cross training sport, but here are some of the most effective.

Running or cycling

Running or cycling are great aerobic workouts, building your cardiovascular fitness. As they are higher impact than swimming, they also are proven to improve bone density.

Incorporate a running or cycling session into your training to mix up your routine and get your heart racing.

Weight training

Weight training forms a large focus of many swimmers’ training. Functional exercises that mimic parts of swimming technique are often preferred, using resistance bands or cables to engage the muscles swimmers use in the pool.

Popular exercises include squats, tricep pull downs and hip and leg extensions.


Soccer offers a full body workout but focuses on lower body strength. The kicking motion and agility from the constant changing of direction can be beneficial to swimmers.

The sport also offers benefits through the demand on players’ reflexes, important at the start of a swimming race.