How To Get A Swimmer’s Body Without Even Getting Your Feet Wet

Ask any given person on the street or acquaintance what the most attractive athletic body type is and odds are you will hear them say a swimmer’s body is the most appealing.  Although some might debate that a different type of body is sexier the truth is they will probably rank it somewhere in the top 2 positions.


Having the genetics of a swimmer does help so I will not lie about that.  However, 99 percent of us are not and will never be athletic swimmers.  This does not mean that we can’t look as athletic as a swimmer.  In fact learning how to get a swimmer’s body is not difficult at all.

What makes this body type so attractive?

The reason this body type is attractive to so many men and women is quite simply that this body is lean without being too bulky.  Most people do not like the Incredible Hulk look.  However, swimmers have a natural yet muscular look that is low in body fat that shows off their definition.

A second factor that makes their bodies attractive is the fact that their physical dimensions are even.  In other words the upper body is equally muscular as their lower body.  One body part does not overpower the other.

So what does it take to look like a swimmer?

Have a low fat diet:  Yes you have heard it before but there is no other way around it.  You have to eat healthy in order to keep your body fat low.

Do Interval Type Cardio Training:  Forget about running miles and hours week after week.  Look at swimmers, specifically the short distance swimmers like Amanda Beard or Michael Phelps (pictured above).  Both swimmers compete in fast races that are similar to short distance track runners.  In order to copy these conditions it is best to do interval type cardio for 15 to 20 minutes.  This type of training can be done either in a pool or using any other type of cardio exercise.

Do Weights In Heavier Range:  Instead of lifting weights in the high rep range lift around six to eight repetitions per set.  Any type of equipment can be used like dumbbells, barbells, kettlebells, machines and even training with resistance bands.  More importantly to do not neglect any given body part.  Do workouts that target the shoulders, back, arms, chest and legs.

If anyone wonders how to get a swimmer’s body the three factors I point out are the ones mentioned above.

However it has been said so often that what distinguishes a swimmer’s body from any other athlete is their upper body, specifically the shoulders and back.

Here is a sample workout to develop a strong swimmer’s back

  • Pull Ups:  Use a slightly wider than shoulder width grip.  Do as many as you can per set.
  • Rows:  Use any machine, barbell or dumbbells.
  • Lat Pulldowns:  Use a lat pulldown machine with a slightly wider than shoulder width grip.  In the absence of a pulldown machine feel free to do close grip pull-ups.
  • Low Rows:  Use a low row machine.  The low rows are excellent in giving upper back development as well rear deltoid development.  You can also do this exercise with dumbbells by leaning chest first into an incline bench.  Let your arms hang straight down with a dumbbell in each hand.  Bring the weigh up and back.

Do 4 sets of 6 to 8 repetitions.  For Pull-ups do as many as possible even if you can only do one or two.  You will do more with time and this will help you gain strength that will help with other upper body workouts.

As you can see it is not necessary to get in a pool and swim.  If you do not know how to swim you can still achieve a swimmer’s body by following the steps mentioned above and different workouts like the back workout outlined in this article.

Now that you know how to get a swimmer’s body try these tips and tell me what you think.

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  1. A swimmer’s body is a great goal. Lean and muscular is where it’s at. You outlined some good exercises to help get there…short of jumping in the pool of course!

  2. Great article and excellent photo choices. I’d kill for a body like that! LOL! Thanks for stopping by my blog too. Tell your P90X girlfriend to stop in and say hi.

  3. Awesome article! Pull ups are the best overall exercise in my opinion. Nothing builds an attractive upper body and the lower body fat you are carrying around the better you get at them. My goal is to get to twenty consecutive pull ups this month. But as long as you are pushing yourself to failure on them you are improving!

  4. I never thought about a swimmers body before I’m so short I don’t think even looking like Phelps would help me.
    Actually I heard Phelps eats about 12,000 calories a day? That would take me 3 days.

  5. Sam Munoz says:

    @ Dave,
    Glad you enjoyed the article. I would send people off to the local pool but with this freezing weather I doubt anyone would listen. Lol.

    I really admire both Amanda Beard and Michael Phelps for their dedication and focus and it is obvious they work hard just by looking at their physiques. Keep at it with your fitness goals and you will definitely have others wanting to kill for having your physique. lol… Really enjoy your page and I will definitely stop by and let my gf know as well.

    @ Mike,
    I am a huge fan of pull-ups and make it a staple of my back workout. I know so many people avoid them and do a couple of pull down sets but the benefits of pull-ups are huge. Keep at it and reach that goal!
    Thanks for stopping by.

    @ Raymond,
    You can definitely get as lean as a swimmer. Although I have noticed that the taller guys tend to be swimmers and somewhat shorter guys are often Olympic divers.
    Oh man, I know what you mean, Phelps eats so many calories it is unbelievable but I know other types of sports require a very high caloric intake to keep up with their energy level.
    I think we could train ourselves to eat 12,000 calories… unfortunately I think I would end up looking 12,000 pounds heavier…

  6. Sam-

    Nice post.

    I think it’s interesting that what motivates many men to go to the gym and “get huge” is that they feel that women will be more attracted to them, when in fact women typically prefer a leaner, but still strong physique.

    You present some nice ways to accomplish this.