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Should swimmers do weight training?

Should swimmers do weight training?QUESTION:

Hey Gary,

It’s me Sam, from Florida of the United States. I have had great success following your videos and website. From last year when I first found your site to today, I have improved my freestyle from barely being able to break 30 seconds in a fifty to a 27 seconds flat!

I had just one question since I’m planning to pursue swim in college in two years. Should swimmers participate in weight training like other athletes (football and wrestling) do? I know that too much mass causes more drag but I was planning to get a gym membership and I was wondering if there’s any exercises I should avoid or try in particular.

Sam Chen


Hi Sam, great to hear from you.

Yes swimmers will do some weight training to assist their development particularly once they hit 14/15 years and older.  The training though needs to be really well structured.  Many swimmers and gym coaches make the mistake of just working on general strength whereas swimmers need to develop core strength initially and then strength when doing specific swimming actions.

I would suggest looking closely at the Swim Gym Pro program as it is excellent for swimmers with all exercises specifically designed for competitive swimmers.  You can also check out the article at https://theswimmingexpert.com/dryland-training-for-swimmers/.

Once you can do all the exercises in the Swim Gym Pro program consistently well, you would then seek out a gym coach who understands and has worked with competitive swimmers.


The Swimming Expert

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