What is six pack nursing

Abdominal muscle training for triathletes - booster for your six pack

Abdominal muscle training is always very popular - especially when the summer months are approaching! And some amateur athletes may dream of the bikini body or the perfect beach figure.

For triathletes who go swimming regularly, a six-pack is often also desirable, even if endurance athletes generally tend to be reluctant to train their strength.

But there are other good reasons for triathletes to care for their washboard abs - apart from the look!

And actually, abdominal muscle training for triathletes is just the beginning ...

The article content for you at a glance:

The thing with the six pack

You may be familiar with the saying “muscles are made in the kitchen”.

That definitely and especially applies to the abdominal muscles!

Because it's just like this:

You can do as much abdominal muscle training as you like: Unfortunately, you won't get a six-pack if you eat too much all the time. As long as there is a layer of fat over it, the existing muscles are not visible!

Excess calories all too often end up on the stomach (for men of creation) or on the thighs and buttocks (for women).

So if you are looking for a six-pack, you should pay attention to your diet in addition to training or work on reducing your body fat percentage (KFA).

The abdominal muscles only become visible from a KFA of 12% in men or around 20% in women.

This also explains why some people just have a washboard abs "on their own" even though they never train it. But then the muscles are very flat.

When it comes to optics, the following 3 points are decisive:

  • regular strength training to build muscles
  • Cardio training to keep burning calories
  • a healthy and balanced diet that will help you lower your body fat percentage (with the help of a calorie deficit) or, ideally, maintain a low KFA

The point of abs training for triathletes

Apart from that, it always makes sense to train the abdominal muscles as part of the core.

Because this plays a decisive role for triathletes in terms of endurance performance.

A strong hull is one of the most important factors

  • while swimming - for a good position in the water and a correspondingly economical crawl style
  • for an upright posture while running
  • to avoid injuries, especially to the spine or the pelvic area

The abdominal muscle training for triathletes naturally helps to strengthen your core.

However, you should not neglect the back and pelvic floor as part of the core muscles, but at least train them as well.

13 exercises for a strong stomach

In the following, we will introduce you to 13 different abdominal exercises for triathletes.

Some are very similar to each other or there are countless variations of an exercise.

Try it out and see what appeals to you the most.

Then you can vary the level of difficulty over time.

Booster - Tips for Execution

You don't need any additional training equipment for the following exercises. Only a mattress or sleeping pad would be appropriate so that you don't hurt yourself on the hard floor.

In general, as always, technology comes before number.
So always concentrate on the correct execution and never work with momentum. Otherwise, you may injure your neck or back.

If you are still at the beginning, it is better to start small before you get such sore muscles that you can no longer move.

In other words: Choose 2-3 exercises, take a fixed number of repetitions (e.g. 10-15) and do them three times in a row (i.e. always the same number in three rounds).

To avoid getting used to it, you can gradually increase the level of difficulty, i.e. either increase the number of exercises or do more difficult exercises.

By the way, the exercises are more effective or more difficult, the slower you do them.

Finally, it remains to be said that you should never forget your opponent, your back. Otherwise, sooner or later there will be imbalances and pain.


Next to situps, crunches are probably the most popular abdominal muscle exercises.

There are countless variations of this.

For the classic version, lay your back on a mat.

The legs are wrapped, the arms crossed over the chest.

Now you tense your abdominal and back muscles and lift your upper body slightly off the mat.

In contrast to sit-ups, the upper body is not completely straightened. That saves your back.

Upleg crunch

Another variation is the Upleg Crunches.

Here you raise your legs in the air.

This will make the exercise a little easier.

Side crunch

With the side crunches you not only address the straight, but also the lateral abdominal muscles.

To do this, you go back to the starting position of the normal crunches. Say: You bend your legs.

This time, however, you put your arms on the sides of your body.

During the exercise you stretch your arms forward, always alternating to the right or left of the legs.

Your upper body rotates back and forth accordingly.

Upleg side crunch

This exercise differs from the previous one only in that you raise your legs again.

Otherwise the execution remains the same.

Side leg crunch

With the Side Leg Crunch you address your lateral abdominal muscles even more strongly.

To do this, lie down on the mat so that your upper back remains straight, but your legs are bent to the side on the floor.

The arms are bent while the hands lightly touch the head behind the ears.

(However, you can theoretically cross your arms over your chest as in the previous variants or stretch them straight forward.)

For the exercise, you raise and lower your upper body again.

After several repetitions on one side, the same number follows on the other.

Bicycle crunch

With this variant you train the straight and the lateral abdominal muscles equally.

Lie back on the mat again and lift your bent legs.

The arms are bent, the hands are touching the head.

Now you always move one elbow and the diagonally opposite knee towards each other. (That is, with the right arm to the left knee and with the left arm to the right knee.)

Since you train both sides alternately, you can do twice the number of repetitions.

Leg raises

The following exercise is a lot more demanding than the previous one, especially if you do it slowly and in a controlled manner.

You will probably feel it especially in your lower abdomen.

You start lying on your back on the floor.

Keep your upper body and arms on the mat while you tense your stomach and lift your legs at the same time.

The feet make a quarter circle when moving, but never touch the ground.


The next exercise is also a little challenge for your abs.

It works in a similar way to the previous one. However, you move both legs independently of each other.

Instead of lifting and lowering them at the same time, you make a kind of scissor movement in which the legs alternate.


When training the abdominal muscles for triathletes, the jackknife should of course not be missing.

You also need a lot of tension in your core for this exercise.

You sit almost permanently on your bottom, but you don't touch the floor with the other parts of your body.

To begin with, legs and arms are straight out. The upper body and legs should be relatively flat off the floor.

During the exercise, you bend your legs and lift your upper body.

Switch between the starting and ending positions again and again so that both halves of the body are constantly moving towards or away from each other.


This exercise is an extension of the jackknife. Here you train all abdominal muscles, the straight and the side muscles.

Here, too, you have to stay permanently on your bottom and keep the tension in your stomach and back.

Instead of opening and closing, you always turn your upper body alternately to the right and left.

You can also optionally take a weight in both hands. Then it becomes all the more difficult.

Foot Reach

The following exercise also works the straight and lateral muscles equally, but is not quite as demanding.

Lie with your back on your stomach and stretch your legs up in the air at a roughly right angle to the floor.

Then lift your upper body slightly, moving your right arm to your left leg.

After a short lowering, you do the same with the other limbs, so that you always alternate both sides.

Try not to pull your legs closer to your body, which would make the exercise easier, but instead try to keep them as straight as possible.

Bottom up

The following exercise is very explosive and in a sense cannot be done slowly.

First you lie on your back and stretch both legs straight up in the air.

Keep your arms flat next to your body.

Tense your core muscles and move your buttocks into the air with a small, powerful impulse.

You will probably not be able to hold this position for long, but will quickly sink again.

Therefore, do several quick repetitions in a row.

Leg rotation

For the last exercise, you need very good control and body control.

As always, lie on your back and straighten your legs in the air.

The arms remain on the floor next to the upper body and are used for stabilization.

Now move your legs slowly and in a controlled manner, alternating on the left and right side.

You may need to balance the weight a bit with your arms to avoid falling over.

The video

Further exercise recommendations

If the abdominal muscle training for triathletes is not enough for you and you want to work on your form in other ways, we have numerous other recommendations for you!

In the following blog posts you will find more exercises with which you can train the different parts of the body:

You can find out how you can improve your maximum strength and benefit from it as a triathlete here:

We have summarized everything about training at home here:

We wish you a lot of fun and success in training!


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Note: All of our recommendations have been carefully selected, developed and checked. They are aimed at healthy adults who have no (previous) illnesses. None of our articles can or should be a substitute for competent medical advice. Before you start training, please consult a doctor and get a check-up.