Terrific Transitions

cycle-dismount

For the last few Friday evenings I‘ve had a great time coaching Wakefield Junior Triathletes.  They meet at Thornes Park Athletic Track for a 90 minute bike session.  Yes, 90 minutes! Up to 30 intrepid young triathletes age 8 – 16 brave the rain, wind, and sub-zero temperatures.  These athletes are tough and fearless.

I used part of the session with our other coaches to work on transition technique.  Something seniors hardly ever work on.  The improvement over three weeks has been amazing showing that practicing this element can save minutes in a race.

I’ll write further on technique in later blogs.  This is just to encourage every triathlete to put some time aside to practice transition technique even in the off-season.

In the meantime of particular note have been some  interpretations of dismount techniques I have witnessed.

Stop and roll:  Like all of us who have learned to use clip less pedals there have been a few stop and roll dismounts as the cyclist suddenly remembers they are still attached to the bike.

Leap and leave:  Where the triathlete dismounts brilliantly but then lets go of the bike and watches it career riderless through the transition area.

Weaving run:  After the dismount the triathlete grabs the bike saddle and runs.  At this point the bike takes control weaving randomly around the transition area like a terrier on a leash.

Superman dismount:  I’ve only ever seen this successfully accomplished on one occasion.  We had to put a stop to it before others tried.  You race towards the dismount line and detach both feet from the pedals.  While holding the handle bars you throw your feet behind whilst lying on your stomach on the saddle in a superman position.  Then somehow swing your feet to the side and run.  Genius.bike-dismountAero step through:  Not for the faint hearted. Do as the pros and approach the dismount line with feet detached from your pedals, step through with your inside foot ready to run.  At this point crouch down so your body is within the space of the frame in an aerodynamic position. Don’t even think about braking.  As you get near the dismount line instantly run with a leg cadence of at least 250.  It is lightning quick. I like to think of it as pro +.  If you are over the age of 10 don’t even think about trying it. In fact, if you are 10 and under, stop it.  You will only encourage adults to copy.

I would have video of these techniques but it’s hard to get good footage in the wind, rain and snow...return to bike

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