Shredded Abs For Hockey Players

How To Get Shredded Abs (Ugh).

Disclaimer: Honestly I don’t really care if you have six pack abs or not.  What I care about most of all is that:

  • #1 you stay injury free
  • #2 your are a major reason why your team wins a ridiculous amount of games
  • #3 you keep playing the greatest sport in the world and love every second

Given the disclaimer above, I feel a little odd delivering this info to you, but it is something I still get questioned about by both women and men, skaters and goalies, heck even my 76 year old Mom complains about her abs.

The Secret

I bet lots of you have even searched the internet looking for the secret.  Yeay, BUSTED!  Don’t worry, I won’t tell, I have done the same thing 😉

Some of the internet fitness experts talk about the ‘secret’method or the special ‘trick’ you can play on your body to coax those abs to the surface.

Let’s think about it for a second.  Is it really that much of a secret that you need to strengthen your abdominals to build some muscle?  And is it really such a ‘trick’ that you need to somehow melt away the belly blubber that is keeping everyone from seeing those abs?

Not really earth-shattering stuff is it?

Spontaneous Pose Off!

Just in case you are still not with me, let’s do this experiment.

  1. Go to the bathroom mirror (actually any mirror will work)
  2. Flash your best front double biceps a la Arnold Schwartzenegger
  3. Tell me what you see.

Hopefully – you saw your biceps muscles pop up.  Did you have to trick or coax them to pop out when you flexed them?  Probably not (some of you maybe J).

They just are not covered in flubber blubber and that is why they look so very nice.

Ab Training = Good Hockey Training

Here is the GREAT news!  Training that will help you get six pack abs is actually the exact same as the training that will build you into a dominant hockey player and that goes for goalies or skaters.

If you look at Sidney Crosby, Steve Stamkos, Pavel Datsyuk or Jonathan Toews with their shirt off, do you think you will their abs just screaming to get out?  I am going to say – yes!

Of course even some NHL guys and even players in your league perform really well minus the ripped mid-section.  I am not saying it is a prerequisite, but it does help.

The Formula

There are three ingredients to this simple fail-proof formula:

  1. Strengthen the abdominals (without doing the most popular exercise for ab).
  2. Banish the belly fat with interval training (while building your speed and stamina)
  3. Find your nutritional happy place (you can start with just one strategy)

Let me show you how it all goes together.


Add the following circuit to your off-ice training three times per week.

NOTE:  If you already do the Ultimate Goalie Training, Rapid Response Goalie Training, Goalie Workout Club, Hockey Workout Club or Hockey Training Blueprint, then you do not need to add this circuit, I already include this formula in all of my done-for-you programs.  That’s why I call them ‘done-for-you’ silly!

If you are not familiar with all of these exercises, don’t worry, I will walk you through them in the video…

If you cannot see the video in the player above, simply click or cut and paste the link

Eccentric Roll Outs – make sure you are lowering for at least 5 seconds.  Try to build up to 10 seconds.  Do 6 reps. This one also helps reduce your risk of ab and hip flexor strains.

MB Smash – do 8 reps. This one will help you activate your torso quickly in a bracing contraction like when you are delivering or receiving a body check.

Facing MB Rotary Pass – do 6 reps to each side.  No secret this one helps you build a quicker, more powerful release.

Side Plank + Static Hold Abduction – build up to 60s on each side.  Oh yeah, it also reduces your risk of sports hernia.


These are tough, tough, tough, but they are over before you know it.  Kinda like that pink penicillin liquid stuff you had to take when you had strep throat as a kid and they said it was ‘coconut’ flavoured, but it wasn’t and it made you barf in the sink – but then after a week of choking it down you felt much better…was that just me?

Anyway, here is what I need you to do…

Grab a jump rope, a stationary bike, an Elliptical, a soccer field, an agility ladder (draw one in chalk), a slideboard….basically anything you can use to get your heart rate up.

Now go for 20 seconds as hard as you can (like as hard as hard as you can), then rest for 10 seconds.  Completely rest – you will need it!

Repeat that 8 times!  Yes, that is only four minutes of work.  Do that for the first three weeks.  After the first three weeks, rest for 5-minutes after your first set of 8 intervals (you could do your ab circuit during the ‘rest’) and then repeat another four minute, 8 repetition bout of 20s full out: 10s full rest.

If you do not feel like you are going to throw up a little bit (or a lot) at the end of the four minutes, you are not doing it right.

If of course you have not exercises since original episodes of Happy Days were playing on TV, then please, please, please do not leap off the sofa and start doing these high intensity intervals.  Start with a walk around the block please.


This one is actually THE KEY!  You can do every single thing right, in fact many of you already are.  Many of you are sitting there with a six or eight pack (that is just genetic by the way) already, but no one can see it because it is buried by your less than optimal nutritional strategies (which is a super nice way of saying, time to cut out the crap).

So here is what I want you to do if you are really serious about this ripped abs thing.  Start today with this simple step:

1.     Start writing down every single thing you eat and drink and the time of day.

The nutrition log will show you in black and white where you are running into trouble.  Good nutrition is not a mystery really.  We all know that we cannot eat pizza once per week, fast food hamburgers and fries twice per week, a beer or two each night, a chocolate bar (for energy) once or twice per week and drink orange juice like we are single-handedly trying to save the orange groves in Florida – – and still have six pack abs.

So look at that log and see – are you eating too much of the wrong foods, are you eating too little to support your activity causing your body to try and store more fat?

Do you eat really well on Monday to Friday, but then the weekend turns into a fast food fiesta!  Note – just because you make hamburgers yourself on the back grill, does not mean you will not get fat if you slam down 2 or 3 and chase it with potato salad.  Just so you know.

So there you have it, the secret six pack formula for hockey players – basically, train properly and watch what you eat.  Develop strong muscles that will help you battle in the corner and fire the puck at lightning speed while whittling your body fat percentage into the region of 8% and there you have it – washboard abs (that aren’t hidden under a load of towels).