Charleston County Parks Hosting New Youth Triathlon in July

Photo by William Stitt

In conjunction with youth and junior triathlon coaching specialists Palmetto TRIbe, the Charleston County Park and Recreation Commission (CCPRC) will host its first ever Youth Triathlon on July 28 at James Island County Park. The event will be open to ages 7 to 14 and will be the first in the area to offer an open-water swim.

The multi-sport event will be held on a safe, well-monitored course within James Island County Park. The swim portion will take place in the park’s lake. After the swim, participants will traverse the shaded paths and roads inside the park for the bike and run legs of the race.

“The Youth Triathlon is a natural progression of our Charleston Sprint Triathlon Series for adults,” said CCPRC Fitness and Wellness Programming Manager Allison Foster. “The event furthers our goals to create a culture that encourages youth to become more active in a fun, welcoming environment. The benefits of increasing physical activity run deep. It dovetails with higher self-esteem, self-discipline, confidence, team and leadership skills.”

The race will begin at 7:15 a.m. on Saturday, July 28. The course is contained inside the park and the open water swim will be monitored by CCPRC’s safety and lifeguarding team. Distances will vary based on the age of the participants. Ages 7-10 will complete a one-course loop featuring a 100-yard swim, a 1.5-mile bike and a 1-mile run. Ages 11-14 will make their way through two loops to complete a 200-yard swim, a 3-mile bike and a 2-mile run.

All finishers will receive a medal, and age group awards will also be presented to the top three males and females in the age categories of ages 7-8, 9-10, 11-12 and 13-14. Registration is $45, and is available at CharlestonCountyParks.com or by calling 843-795-4386.

“We are so excited that the first open water swim youth triathlon race has come to Charleston,” said Shana Fitch, coach and founder of Palmetto TRIbe. “We are huge advocates of kids being involved in sports where everyone is able to work hard at practice and also experience the treat of racing. Swimming, biking and running is something most all children tend to enjoy from the onset. We find in our training programs that it’s a natural progression for them to put the three sports together in triathlon training for an awesome practice and race experience.”

Palmetto TRIbe coaches will conduct a Youth Tri Swim Clinic Monday, July 23 from 6-7 p.m. at James Island County Park for an additional fee. This is an excellent opportunity for participants to become more familiar with the actual swim course before the event. For more information on the clinic or to register, visit CharlestonCountyParks.com.

The adult-focused Charleston Sprint Triathlon Series is a five-race series spanning May through August. This series is in its 28th year and is also held at James Island County Park, with a 600-yard swim, a 12-mile bike ride, and a 5K run. The 2018 races are held on May 20, June 17, July 8, and July 29 and Aug. 12.

For more information on the Youth Triathlon, the Youth Tri Swim Clinic, the Charleston Sprint Triathlon, or to register, visit www.CharlestonCountyParks.com or call 843-795-4386. For youth and junior triathlon coaching and training programs, visit www.PalmettoTRIbe.com.

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