Triathlon is a great sport that demands a great physical preparation to face the athlete to the three elements involved in the sport: swimming, cycling and running.

What is triathlon?

Triathlon is three different sports in one: swimming, cycling and running in the same competition. It is a sport that requires a great deal of physical and mental preparation from athletes.

About triathlon

Triathlon is a combination of three sports: swimming, cycling and running. Order must be followed strictly to be successful.


The main features of triathlon are as follows:


It is believed that it began with a bet between North American sailors in 1978 in Hawaii. According to the triathlete, historian and writer Scott Tinley, the origin of triathlon is given in a race in France during the years 1920 – 1930 that received the names of “Les trois sports“, “La Course de Débrouillards” and “La course des Touche à Tout”.

In 1920 the French newspaper L’Auto reported on a contest called Les Trois sports, which had the reverse order of today’s triathlon, with an initial run of three kilometers on foot, followed by 12 km on bicycle and finished with the swim in the Marne channel.

There is a 1934 article on Les Trois sports in Rochelle, a race with swimming, cycling around the port of La Rochelle and the park of Laleu, which ended with a race at the André Barbeau stadium.


There are three sporting activities included in the triathlon: swimming, cycling and running. This is the order of the disciplines to be developed. The first test of triathlon, swimming, takes place in open water, where the route must be delimited, which is approximately 1,500 meters, according to the Olympic triathlon.

As for cycling, it must be done on an asphalt surface with a distance of 40 km in Olympic triathlon. Finally, in athletics, the distance must be 10 km. It is the easiest part to prepare as it does not use as much energy as cycling or swimming.


The original distance used in the Ironman is 3800 m of swimming, 180 km of cycling and 42 km of running. The Olympic distance is 1500 m of swimming, 40 km of cycling and 10 km of running and Sprint 750 m of swimming, 20 km of cycling and 5 km of running.

The Iron Kid consists of half the Sprint distance. The Half Ironman or 70.3, which consists of 1900 m of swimming, 90 km of cycling and 21 km of running, are generally qualifying tests to compete in an Ironman.

Triathlon rules

The basic rules of triathlon are as follows:


The triathlon categories are as follows:


The advice of the coaches is to increase the loads by 10% per week to avoid injuries. This is known as gradual adaptation and applies to all three disciplines of triathlon, including gym training.

You should look for the right equipment for training, as it should be optimal to avoid accidents. Recovery or rest is a basic point of training, because the body must replenish energy and repair muscles. Over-training should be avoided, and the body should be allowed to recover.

You should work on the correct technique for strokes and when running, in order to save energy. It is necessary to learn how to combine technique and strength through muscle building exercises to give strength to the tendons and joints.

Triathlon competitions

There are many triathlon competitions throughout the year and in many countries worldwide, however, the most important competitions are the following:


Being a sport that involves three different routines, the equipment needed to participate in the triathlon is as follows:

Written by Gabriela Briceño V.

How to cite this article?

Briceño V., Gabriela. (2019). Triathlon. Recovered on 23 February, 2024, de Euston96:

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