Triathlon NSW recently visited the Illawarra Triathlon Club Junior Session. The session is under the direction of Jye Cajar, level 1 development coach and staged in and around the Wollongong Harbour.
There were 10 juniors under the age of 12 years at the session.
Jye had the assistance of NSW Talent ID athlete and ambassador Grace Mahon, who ran with the juniors during their warm up and their drills.
The juniors ran along the esplanade of Wollongong Harbour for the warm up. Following the warm up, they started their main session. They swam out to a buoy which was about 50 metres from shore. The start line was made more narrow every time they did it, to replicate crowded race starts.
The juniors then moved into a swim | run relay, where they swam out to the buoy, ran and tagged their partner who went and did the same. They then had a small break and lined up to take part in an aquathlon: swim around the boat, out of the water, run along the sand to the middle of the harbour, to where Grace was standing - and run back to the cove.
The training environment was safe, fun, friendly. encouraging and the distances and drills were suitable for the ages.
The session was well planned and included a warm up, drills, swim skills, beach running skills, swim | run transitions, physical conditioning and social interactions.
The next session 6pm - 6:45pm in Wollongong Harbour and was tailored as an adult and older junior session. There were approximately 16 participants, 3 juniors of which one was Grace and 2 were academy athletes.
The session was staged by Nathan Miller and included a 10 minute swim warm up. The group practiced standing starts out to a boat and back. This was repeated about 8 times and also handicapped with the stronger simmers having to swim faster to catch the swimmers in front. The participants finished and stood around chatting to each other, thanked the coach and departed. The session was well organised and included a warm up, race demands, physical conditioning, mental conditioning.
This is one of the many fantastic pathway opportunities for our juniors to get involved in triathlon and in a friendly and fun club environment here in NSW!