As an indoor cycling instructor, you”™re going to find a large percentage of your students dabble in triathlon, or engage in it as a serious sport. Either way, you don”™t want to be embarrassed by using the wrong triathlon-related words or terms in your class when talking to them about triathlon (including the ever-popular pronunciation of triathlon as “triath-a-lon”).

So to help you look better and converse intelligently and confidently with your indoor cycling students who are triathletes, this is Part 4 of a five part series called “Tri-Lingo 101” that will teach you how to use the correct triathlon terms. In this article, you”™ll learn common triathlon transition terms. Without further ado, let”™s dive in!

Bike In — Coming off the bike leg of the triathlon, there is typically an arch, gate or area into which you push your bike.

Bike Out — When you head out on the bike leg of the triathlon, there is typically an arch, gate or area out of which you push your bike.

Bodyglide — Various forms of lotion or lubricant materials exist, with Bodyglide being one popular brand. This can be used on arms, legs, hands and feet to enter and exit wetsuits more quickly, and also in shoes to get feet to slide into shoes more quickly.

Change Tent — In Ironman (and some Half-Ironman) events, this is a tent to run into after the swim to change into your cycling gear.

Elastic Laces — These are placed on running shoes to increase speed of transition and reduce the length of time it takes to tie a shoe.

Mat — Timing mats are placed throughout the course and in the transition areas to sense the chip on your ankle and keep track of your swim, bike, run and transition times.

Run Out - When you head out on the run leg of the triathlon, there is typically an arch, gate or area out of which you push your bike (there is no “Run In”…that”™s the finish line!)

Swim In — As you come out of the water and run up to the transition area, you”™ll typically go through an arch, gate or area marked “Swim In”.

T1 — The first transition from swim-to-bike.

T2 — The second transition from bike-to-run.

Transition Bags — In many events, you”™ll be given separate bags in which you place things like running shoes, wetsuit and goggles, or special needs. Be sure to pay attention to what goes where!

Wetsuit Stripper — A volunteer who is there at the end of the swim to help you out of your wetsuit.


Ben is a fitness business coach, triathlon author, and sports nutritionist. If you want more videos, aricles and audios about swimming and other triathlon related topics, visit Ben”™s free blog and podcast at . Also be sure to check out Ben”™s endurance sports website Endurance Planet, at and his Rock Star Triathlete Academy, at .  Finally, if you want to learn how to grow your fitness business and make more money, visit Ben”™s fitness business advice website at .


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