Daniel Ricciardo Shares The Workout He Swears By To Stay In Shape | Men's Health Magazine Australia

Daniel Ricciardo Shares The Workout He Swears By To Stay In Shape

If you, like me, binge-watched the entire first season of Formula One: Drive To Survive in one sitting, you’d be aware that Daniel Ricciardo is one of the most highly conditioned athletes out. Not only does it require incredible strength to survive the spike in G-force every time he hits the accelerator, he needs stamina and endurance to, quite literally, go the distance.

So, what does he do to stay so fit – especially during iso?

The 30-year-old took Men’s Health to his farm in Western Australia to witness a circuit session with his performance coach Michael Italiano.

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“With F1 racing, we go through so many loads and G-forces, and our whole body, even though we’re tied down in the car, strapped in, our whole body is constantly going through so much stress and force, and the races are 90 minutes to 2 hours long,” Daniel said. “That’s why we need to be very conditioned from head to toe.”

He also has to be mindful of bulking up too much, as the “heavier you are the slower the car is.”

“It’s a very lightweight and lean sport,” he explained. “It’s fun, he [Italiano] keeps it fresh. We’re not going through monotony. We’re changing things up everyday.”

Since being back home, the pair have been squeezing in up to six workouts per week, while also taking cues from whatever equipment is lying around the farm.  

“You can definitely get creative, just keep an open mind,” Daniel said.

Daniel Ricciardo’s Farm Workout

Perform each exercise for 45 seconds, then rest for 45 seconds. Repeat the whole series for 4 total rounds.

Sledgehammer Slams

“He’s going to slam this big truck tire with a sledgehammer. This is pretty much an upper body workout,” Italiano said. “[He’s] working his core. He’s going to alternate hand positions and feet positions, and get into a good rhythm.”

Tire Flips

“He’s going to get nice and low in a sumo squat position, and he’s going to get right underneath the tire,” Italiano said. “He’s going to use his quads, glutes and lower back to really power through, power up, and flip the tire. It’s an explosive movement and also a really good lower back, lower body power move. This is really good for his posterior chain.. For Formula 1 drivers, their posterior chain has to be quite strong. It takes a lot of the braking load, so it’s important that we keep him very well conditioned from his posterior change point of view.”


“He’s going to safely pick up this log, and he’s going to do a squat into an overhead press,” Italiano detailed. “Overhead pressing is really good for his core, and also really good for his shoulder strength. It’s important that drivers have strong shoulders from controlling the steering. We really do work his anterior delts and his chest quite a bit.”

Zercher Walks

“These drivers endure quite a lot of G-forces through turning and breaking, so it’s really important that their core is very well conditioned and strong to be able to control the car,” Italiano said. “So this is a fantastic exercise to compliment this.”

Sled Drags

“We’re improvising a sled drag, so we’ve got a chain drag,” Italiano said. “He’s going to stand up nice and tall, keep his chest up, straight arms, and he’s going to drag these chains toe-to-heel, toe-to-heel. This is really good for his posterior chain, working those glutes, and also for his core and arm strength.”

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