Advice on a Beginner Triathlon Bike

Triathlon Event  I purchased an entry level road bike and I am not ready to spend a few thousand on a real tri bike… I am considering buying aero bars for my bike… Is there a big difference having them? Is it harder to steer, since tri bikes are made that way?

Forrest from Georgia

Triathlon Event  Hi Forrest,
Thank you for contacting!

First of all, you are already following our best advice to beginner triathletes which is to invest minimally in your first triathlon. Triathlon bikes are very cool, but honestly, until you have a couple of triathlon seasons under your belt, you will not notice the difference between a comparably priced road bike and a triathlon bike. There are subtle differences and it’s always a better idea to wait until you have been bitten by the tri bug and are ready to jump into the sport swim cap deep.

Once you are ready, there are so many amazing triathlon bikes to choose from. We always suggest that you go to your local bike shop (go small business) to pick the best bike for you. Small bike shops tend to have sales people who participate in the sport of cycling and can give you great advice on what type of bike would be best for your cycling needs. They can also help you find a bike that fits your budget, whether it be used or new, and they will adjust the bike to fit you properly before you walk out the door — all great services not always found at the chain stores.

Aero Bars are a great asset to have because they can help you get into a very aerodynamic position, which will allow you to shave time off your bike leg. Do you need them for your first triathlon? No. In fact, we suggest you skip them and wait until after you have a couple of races under your belt. You will be presented with plenty of new experiences with being in your first triathlon event — no need to complicate things.

Would they be pretty cool to have? Yes. Like we said, they keep you very aerodynamic and you look like a real professional cyclist with them. They are not hard to steer, but they steer a bit differently than regular handlebars and you’ll need to spend some time on the road acclimating yourself to them. If you’re going to purchase them, get them asap and start training with them so they are second nature to you by the time your event rolls around.

Be well.
~Jack staff Recommended Resources:


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