Core exercises are essential for swimmers as they can enhance overall performance. (Image via Unsplash / Mark Williams)

5 Best Core Exercises For Swimmers: No Equipment Required

Core exercises can make a big difference in your skills as a swimmer. They can help you swim a little faster or cover more yardage on any given day.

Incorporating core workouts at least a few times per week is proven to go a long way in injury prevention while enabling movement in water more efficiently. In this list of the best core exercises for swimmers, we have come up with the top five exercises that can be done anywhere without any equipment!


Best Core Exercises For Swimmers

Here are the five best core exercises that swimmers can do without any equipment:

Plank is one of the best ways to strengthen and tighten your core. (Image via Unsplash / Annie Spratt)

1) Plank


For a complete core workout, nothing beats the plank. Given that it's such a simple exercise and yet so effective, you probably already have it in your workout arsenal. This is the best all-around measure for core strength, and by changing up your hand placement and the way you do it, you can target different areas of the core.

How to do it?

  • Lie on your tummy with your arms and legs outstretched.
  • Keep your elbows directly below your shoulders and hold for 30 seconds.
  • Increase in time as ability allows.
  • Keep your body in a straight line, don't let your head drop, and keep your abs tight throughout the exercise.


2) Hip Bridges

This core exercise will strengthen your hip flexors, hamstrings, lower abs, and your lower back. This exercise is great for developing deadlift strength, which is important for weight training programs for swimmers.

Here's how you do this exercise:

  • Lie on your back, stretch your arms to the sides, and take a deep breath.
  • Raise your torso towards the ceiling, making sure not to arch your back.
  • Hold it for 3-4 seconds, then lower it slowly.

Superman is a great exercise for developing your scapular stability. (Image via Unsplash / Ayo Ogunsiende)

3) Superman

This exercise is great for developing your scapular stability, which will help you maintain good posture and ward off swimmer's shoulders. It also works your glutes and back.

How to do it?

  • Start lying face down on the ground, with your arms straight above your head.
  • Squeeze your glutes and pull in your belly button.
  • Lift your left arm and right leg at the same time, and hold for three seconds.
  • Now do it again, with the opposite arm-leg combo.

4) V-Sit Kicking

This core workout is a bit more challenging. If you're not ready for the full flutter kick, begin with basic back kicks on your back. This core exercise works your lower back, hip flexors, and abdominal muscles.

Here's how you do this exercise:

  • To do the flutter kick, sit on the ground with your feet together and your arms stretched out above your head.
  • Kick up and down, trying to be as close to a real kick as possible.
  • To steady yourself, use your belly muscles, not your upper body.

Russian twists can help you to develop balance and core stability. (Image via Unsplash / Brian Matangelo)

5) Russian Twists


A Russian twist requires you to rotate your torso in a circular manner, similar to the arm movement in freestyle. Rotating quickly with power and control is crucial for performing this core exercise well.

How to do it?

  • To do an abdominal crunch, sit on the floor with your feet and knees together.
  • Bend over at the waist and put your hands on the floor, shoulder-width apart.
  • Slowly lift your feet off the ground while keeping your back straight, then roll up to the top position.
  • Pause for a second or two before going back down slowly. Repeat.


If you are serious about swimming and spending time in the water every day, or most days, you should be serious about your dryland training as well.

Swimmers, just like other athletes, need to train on land if they want to take their skills to the next level. The body needs balance, and core exercises are one of the best ways to make sure swimmers don't get left behind as they continue to set goals and raise the bar on their swims in the pool.

Edited by
Susrita Das
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