GB Triathlete and training partner of the Brownlees, Mark Buckingham, joined a group of triathlon beginners at Roundhay Park yesterday evening for the GO TRI Absolute Beginners Open Water Swim session.
The session formed part of a British Triathlon & Leeds City Council programme, Tri Something New, to encourage Leeds locals to get into triathlon. So far this summer, 764 people from across Leeds have participated in triathlon for the first time.
Twenty beginners received expert coaching on how to put on a wetsuit, how to enter open water, and how to stay calm and swim confidently. This session, along with a number of other free sessions that take place in leisure centres and outdoor spaces across Leeds, have been hosted to prepare participants for the GO TRI Festival, a beginner friendly triathlon event which takes place in Roundhay Park on Sunday 11 September. You can still sign-up to the event and free training sessions at www.leeds.gov.uk/triathlon.
For those who are nervous about taking part in a triathlon event or activity session, British Triathlon has launched its #YourGOTRI campaign allowing you to simply create your own triathlon, to complete in your own time.
People can select a swim, cycle and run from options including a "trip to the pool", "pedal in the park", and "jog round the block". There’s even an option to "row in the gym" instead of swim. Participants will then be supported with tips and training plans from the experts at British Triathlon.
This summer has seen huge excitement in Leeds around triathlon, from the Columbia Threadneedle World Triathlon Leeds in June, to the successes of the Brownlees at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games. Having showcased staggering crowds in Roundhay Park and throughout the City Centre, the ITU World Triathlon Leeds will return to Leeds next summer.
Mark Buckingham, GB Triathlete, says; "It’s already clear that the World Triathlon Series event and the Brownlees performance in Rio have inspired more people in Leeds to get into triathlon. As an athlete it’s really exciting to be able to support more people getting active. I hope through sessions like today and through campaigns like #YourGOTRI, many more people will get out there and give it a try."
Natalie Justice-Dearn, Participation Director at British Triathlon says; "Major events like the Rio 2016 Olympic Games provide a unique moment in time where we can turn inspiration into participation, and we have challenged ourselves to use this opportunity to keep the momentum going for the long term. We are excited to be working closely with Leeds City Council and local leisure centres to open the sport’s doors to a whole new audience."
To find out more about how to get involved please visit www.leeds.gov.uk/triathlon.