Triathlon is one of the few sports in which someone attempting their first triathlon is sharing a staging area with professional athletes. To be clear, usually the pros get their own special bike rack area, but the larger point is that you don't know how serious the person next to you is about their race.You might be excited at the idea of finishing the race at all, and happily tying eye-catching balloons onto your handlebars, while the person assigned the spot two inches away from yours is anxiously visualizing their race as they shoot for first in their age group, or a personal best.If you are participating in your first triathlon, the most important thing is to do the required training. But a close second in importance is doing your homework, reading the Athlete's Guide or course maps, and not making a hazard of yourself. That includes in the transition area, which is where we will focus here.The transition area is usually a single location, but in a point-to-point race you will have two transition areas. This area is fenced off, and only registered participants in the race are allowed inside.But just because you are allowed to be inside the fence doesn't mean you can hang out anywhere and do anything you want! You can be injured or injure someone else if you aren't paying attention and get in the way of an athlete flying through transition. Triathletes begin their race at different times in most competitions, so just because you have long since finished your sprint, that doesn't mean an Olympic or Half-Iron competitor might not come barreling through at top speed as you are lazily packing up your duffel bag.With gear, it's important to be considerate of your transition neighbors. We are all in tight quarters, and it's easy to knock someone's sunglasses out of their helmet. The person who finds them and puts them back as best they can, or even waits around to apologize and make sure everything is OK, has a better race than the person who ticks off their neighbor. It only takes a little frustration and resentment for someone to be just careless enough to mess up your stuff, knock over your water, etc.Here are 10 Tips for Good Transition Karma:
Triathletes are almost always friendly and generous. But they are also frequently nervous and preoccupied right before the race. Everyone will appreciate you, and you'll feel more prepared and confident, if you implement the suggestions above.
Owner at Beginner Triathlete, web marketing consultant at SiteInSight, writer, entrepreneur, advocate for unstructured nature play for kids.