Triathlon Transitions

July 25, 2011

With about four  weeks to go to the London Triathlon, I’m sure that all of your training for the three disciplines is progressing well. Hopefully the swimming is getting easier, the cycling faster and the running stronger. But what about the fourth and fifth disciplines? The dreaded transitions where you change from swim to bike and bike to run. These are both areas that can either cost you or save you a lot of time. With a little practise and organisation you can be out of transition a long time before those who enter transition with you – here’s some top tips to show you how.

Transition 1 – Swim to Bike

With regards to T1, the biggest problem that people will have is taking your wetsuit off. Personally I tuck the chord on the zip under my swim hat as this way when you get out of the water you always know where it is. My other preference is to take the suit off as soon as the organisers will allow after exiting the water (even if it is before I reach my bike). The suit comes off a lot easier the more water that is in the suit. You must however make sure you carry your suit to your transition rather than handing it to a friend or you will be disqualified

Here is an short video to show you how it can be done. If you haven’t tried clipping your shoes to the bike prior to the race don’t try this for the first time during the race.

Transition 2 – Bike to Run

The second transition, or T2, when you are coming off the bike into the run, again can save you time. Some of the more experienced triathletes will take their feet out of their shoes while still riding and dismount the bike while still moving. Again if you haven’t tried this prior to the race, just stop at the dismount line and go into transition with your cycle shoes still on your feet. Here is a clip to show how to do this as effectively as possible.

If your transition doesn’t go as smoothly as you would have liked don’t panic. It can go wrong for the elite triathletes as well, as this clip from the 2010 Womens Elite race at Hyde Park  shows!

I will put together at least one more blog before the race, but if anyone has any queries please contact me at