Basic Equipment Needs for Triathlon

Very Basics-

Bike, sunglasses and cycling gloves.  It is a good idea to have a water bottle holder on the bike.

Helmet that has been approved by CSPC and has a sticker inside it.  See the following video about helmets.

Swim suit and goggles.

A good quality pair of running shoes.

Air pump at home.


Spare tube, 2-3 C02 Air tubes,  2 Tire Levers.  

A big message the athletes will receive is that they are responsible for maintaining their bikes.  Every season we have flats, it's part of cycling.  Athletes should have everything they need to change a flat.  We will learn through the process.

Few additional notes:

When you walk into most bike retailers and say that your child is going to start doing triathlon you are going to get a variety of responses.  Generally people, even those in bike shops don't understand kids and triathlon.  Coach Kim could write a book about the crazy things that have been said to parents!  So if you have any questions, feel free to contact her.  She will be more than happy to help you.  Below is information to help you with your decision making.  

It is very common for parents to want to wait and see before investing in a sport.  Hence the above list of BASIC items your child needs to get started.  Below is additional information for parents who want to have a deeper understanding.


90% of the time when you say triathlon and bike in the same sentence, you'll be guided to TT Bikes or Triathlon bikes. No, do not buy your child a triathlon bike.  Triathlon bikes are for longer distances, typically used in long course events. Triathlon bikes have the aero bars sticking out front.  This is not safe for most athletes getting into the sport.  These bikes do not handle as well.  Young athletes moving into triathlon should be focusing on cycling skills.  When you are doing drills, games and riding with others on your bikes- the aero bars that stick out become weapons.  Therefore, Triathlon Bikes are not permitted at practices.

Many bikes have the option of disc breaks, this is a newer technology that is very popular.  UCI allows disc breaks in competition, draft-legal triathlon does not allow disc breaks. Therefore, if you believe your child may be competitive, and want to move onto the High Performance team, it is suggested that they do not get disc breaks.

Mountain bikes and Cyclocross bikes are acceptable for non-draft competition.  However, the larger tires and deeper tread will make the athlete slower.

Ideally, a road bike is the best option. There are many used bikes available.

DO NOT buy a bike your athlete will grow into.  A bike that is too large or too small is difficult for an athlete to control.  It is very important that a bike "fits" the rider.  Our team bike sponsor is Cyclical Nature in Hilliard.  Bill is very familiar with our team and offers a deep discount on purchases.  Feel free to visit them their website

Saddle Bag- Bag underneath seat, spare tube, two levers and compressed air or an air pump.

Tri suit.

Ideally athletes wear a triathlon suit during competitions.  Impact Multisport has partnered with Kiwami for our team suit.  Suits range in price from $100 to $130 depending on size.  Please see the Team Store to order a suit. 


One of the benefits of being a team member is that you have access to team equipment.  We currently have 14 team wetsuits that may be used for races.  Most summer races will not require a wetsuit.  Depending on the weather, the OSU Ross triathlon could be wetsuit legal.  We have a team discount with ROKA, suits are also available to be rented by various