What the Heck is an Aquabike?
That huge bike with the inflatable wheels that you ride on the water?
Or that spin class in the pool?
Aquabike is a subdiscipline of triathlon, also known as a part of Multisport (the combining of two or more individual events into one race). Other Multisport events include Duathlon (run-bike-run) and Aquathlon (swim-run). But my personal favorite is the Aquabike (swim-bike).
Also known by its moniker “swim-bike-done”, Aquabike is unique in that it can be run on the exact course as a concurrently running triathlon. This makes it super easy for race directors to add this race to their lineup, simply by adjusting their software to stop when an Aquabiker crosses the finish line. It is a growing segment of the triathlon community based upon this fact alone - adding it to more races attracts more participants.
There are so many advantages to the Aquabike competition! First, you get to go “all out” on the bike; no more saving your legs for the dreaded run coming up. There’s nothing more fun than plucking off one competitor after another! Second, you’re finished before the day gets hot and everyone else is baking in the heat! In fact, I often come in around the same time the overall winners cross the finish line, (because aquabikers normally start last) which makes for an exciting finish! Third, if you have any need to rest (big race coming up, an injury, etc), Aquabike is perfect for low impact competing.
How far can you go in Aquabike? I was lucky to have a friend find the very first National Championships in Aquabike down in Miami (just a few hours from where I live). So, in 2016, I went down and entered MiamiMan Aquabike, and came in 12th! That qualified me to be invited to Team USA and compete at the WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS!
In 2017, Worlds was held in Penticton, Western Canada and we made it a racing vacation. Penticton is wine country in Canada, and also the Peach Capital of the World! What an awesome time.
The following year I went back to Nationals in Miami, qualified again for Team USA and got to race in Fyn, Denmark. Another great adventure with friends!
Find your next adventure in Multisport by giving Aquabike a try! You’ll be glad you did!
Written by Rebecca Fratello, Siren Luminary
Follow Rebecca on Instagram @mobilevet01