The quest for the perfect midsection is one that many people embark upon. With abs being one of the most sought-after body parts, people often turn to different types of exercises to achieve their desired results. One question that comes up frequently is whether swimming works abs. In this blog post, we’ll explore the answer to this question in detail.

How Swimming Works Abs

Swimming is a low-impact, full-body workout that can help build endurance, strength, and flexibility. It works many different muscle groups, including the abdominal muscles. When you swim, your core muscles work to stabilize your body and maintain proper form in the water.

What Science Says

According to a study published in the Journal of Exercise Rehabilitation, swimmers have a higher percentage of lean muscle mass in their abs compared to non-swimmers. The study also found that swimming was effective in reducing waist circumference and body fat percentage.

Swimming vs. Other Ab Exercises

While swimming can tone your abs, it’s important to note that it may not be as effective as other core exercises, such as planks or crunches. This is because swimming is a full-body workout, and you may not be able to focus solely on your abs during the activity. However, this doesn’t mean that swimming is not a valuable addition to your workout routine.

Swimming Workouts for Abs

If you’re looking to target your abs during your swimming workouts, there are a few exercises that you can try. These include:

  • Flutter kicks: While holding onto the pool edge, perform flutter kicks to work your lower abs.
  • Leg lifts: Holding onto a kickboard, perform leg lifts to target your lower abs.
  • Crunches: While floating on your back, perform crunches to work your upper abs.
  • Planks: Hold a plank position in the water to target your entire core.


In conclusion, swimming can work your abs and help you achieve a toned midsection. While it may not be as effective as other core exercises, it’s a great full-body workout that has many other health benefits. Incorporating swimming into your workout routine can help you build endurance, strength, and flexibility, and reduce body fat percentage.

Remember, consistency is key when it comes to seeing results. Whether you choose to swim or perform other types of ab exercises, make sure to stick with your routine and give your body time to see the changes.