My 2 older girls (4 and 6 yrs old) recently participated in the TRi KiDs Triathlon in Bracebridge. As we arrived, there were kids of all ages from 3 to 15. There was excitement in the air and everyone was happy as they set up their bikes and running shoes in the transition area. All the young athletes had their number bibs pinned to their front – what was different that I had not seen before was that the athlete’s first name was also printed on there. The reason for this is so that all the spectators could cheer for the kids by name whether they knew them or not. The support was enormous! I found myself cheering for kids as they rode their bike the final few meters or ran across the finish line with their arms in the air. I could see how hard they were trying but at the same time (and more importantly) they were all smiles – they were having FUN! And this is what the event was all about.
Triathlons promote an active lifestyle for our youth and the kids learn about setting and achieving goals. They gain confidence and their physical abilities increase as they practice more. At each event, you see many of the same people so friendships are made amongst the families. As a parent, I could not have been more proud of my own 2 little “champions”.
Triathlons are an event we will continue to practice and do as a family. Our next race is in Milton in September!
Note: In Ontario there are 2 triathlon organizations for kids – Tri KiDS and Kids of Steel. Encourage your children or grandchildren to try a race today!