When athletes decide they want to start triathlon training many focus on different workouts to get their bodies in shape. Just as important as their physical shape is the equipment they use during the race. Having the proper equipment can often make or break an athlete’s time during the race, as well as increase their exposure to possible injury. When starting triathlon training, athletes should consider purchasing the proper type of triathlon shoes that provide them with the ability to effectively compete in the race while optimizing the amount of time they take to change between events.
Triathlon shoes are characteristically light with good ventilation. This ventilation allows the athlete’s feet to breathe while draining out water from the swim portion of the race. Similar to cycling shoes triathlon shoes have automatic binding cleats that hold the athletes’ feet to the pedals of their bikes. To maximize their triathlon times before and during the race the athletes typically leave their shoes clipped into their bikes. Athletes trying to race in regular road shoes run the risk of trying to cycle in wet sneakers that won’t grip the bike’s pedals.
Another characteristic of triathlon shoes is that all the straps open out and away from the bike frame. This is to prevent athletes from getting tangled in the bike chains when they leave their laces open till they get moving on their bike. Athletes typically use triathlon training to determine where in their bike section they should pause in their pedaling to close their laces. Typical road shoes do not take this into consideration, so athletes racing in regular shoes are leaving themselves vulnerable to injury and other problems of getting caught in the bike chains.
The final main characteristic about triathlon shoes is that they are made for performance. Shoes are made to be comfortable to wear without socks, with either wet or dry feet, and also host a stiff carbon fiber sole. This allows the athlete to get a better push on the bike petals and transfer more of their energy into pedaling. Regular road shoes do not have hard soles which tend to absorb an athlete’s energy instead of transferring it on to the bike.
Having proper triathlon training shoes can mean the difference between an athlete winning or only placing in the competition. These specially designed shoes not only improve a triathlon racer’s time but also reduce the possibility injuries that might otherwise occur when using gear not specialized for the sport. Athletes looking to increase their performance efficiency and decrease their race time should invest in a pair of triathlon shoes.
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