Choosing The Right Bike For Triathlon

To make your mountain bike more suitable for a triathlon, you’ll want to make it smoother and faster with less effort.

You have signed up for your first triathlon and have started training. You are confident in your abilities to run and swim but are unsure if you need to buy a new bike or if you can just use your mountain bike.

Getting started in a triathlon can require purchasing some new equipment, which can be both cheap and expensive. A bicycle can be a big expense.

There is a good chance that most of us have a bike at home that we could use for a triathlon. However, it is important to keep in mind that not all bikes are created equal. A hybrid or mountain bike might not be the best option for this type of event.

We recommend making some changes to these bikes to get the best performance. Read on to find out how to modify your hybrid or mountain bike to make it more suitable for triathlons.

Can I use a mountain bike for a triathlon?

Rockhopper 27.5 | GLOSS TARMAC BLACK / WHITE


If you are just starting to compete in triathlons, a mountain bike will work just fine at first. Serious triathletes use either road bikes or specialized triathlon bikes for competition.

Follow the steps below to prepare your mountain bike for the competition:


What to do to prepare your bike for a triathlon:

  • Road Tyres
  • Clipless pedals
  • Saddle replacement
  • Suspension

You can pump your mountain bike tyres up to 40-50 PSI to make them roll more easily on hard, even surfaces. Be sure to check what PSI your tyres can be pumped to before inflating them.

A second set of wheels with 1.5-inch slick tyres is often bought by bikers who also want to use their bike for riding on the road. These tyres more closely resemble road bike tyres.

No matter what width tyres you choose for your road bike, you’ll need to bring along extra tubes in case you get a puncture while you’re riding.

This text is discussing the advantages of using clipless pedals instead of traditional pedals. Some of the advantages include more stroke control and more power.

You’ll want to get a pair of specialized shoes to go with your clipless pedals. These shoes clip into the pedals and lock your feet into position, so you’ll be able to pedal with more power.

This pedal system will help you go faster and ride your bike more smoothly. You can either install it yourself at home or take it to your local bike shop.

It’s always a good idea to buy a new saddle that suits your needs when you get a new bike. The seat that comes with the bike is usually a standard model that isn’t meant to be super comfortable, just functional.

It is especially important to be comfortable when riding in a competition. You should not have to worry about a sore back when competing, as this will take away from your focus.

For the triathlon, you should raise your seat to have a higher stance and be more aerodynamic for speed.

The suspension on a mountain bike is important for riding on rough terrain, but it is not necessary when riding on the road. There are a few ways to adjust the suspension on a mountain bike to make it more similar to a road bike.

What are the differences between bikes?

There are several different types of bicycles, each of which is better suited for different conditions. Here is a brief overview of the different types of bicycles.



While hybrid bikes are not as light as other types of bikes, they make up for it with thicker wheels and a more effective power transfer. Hybrid bikes are designed for commuting, light and casual off-road riding, and leisurely rides, not for competition.

While hybrid bikes may not be as sleek as other options, if you’re comfortable riding one and think you can maintain your goal pace, it could be a good choice for a triathlon.

Mountain bikes


Mountain bikes are designed to be used off-road, rather than on roads. They are usually heavier than other bikes because of their sturdy construction and off-road design.

Their tyres feature aggressive tread to keep you stable on rough ground and loose terrain.

Road bikes

R872 Disc - Sport

The main difference between road bikes and mountain bikes or hybrids is that road bikes are thinner and lighter. If you take a look at all three types of bikes, it should be easy to tell which one is the road bike. This design makes them more aerodynamic and able to go faster.

Even though their tyres aren’t good for off-road cycling, they would be the best option for road triathlons if the person has experience with road cycling.

Triathlon bikes

man riding on gray road bicycle during daytime

Triathlon bikes are designed to be aerodynamic and efficient in races where drafting is not allowed. Most triathlon bikes have built-in aero bars.

Upgrades to improve a hybrid or mountain bike for a triathlon

1. Skinnier wheels

Best road bike tyres in 2022: the 10 fastest clincher ...

If there’s only one change you can make to your bike, get tyres with less tread for a smoother ride.

If you want to go faster, taller wheels are a good option. You can either swap out your entire wheelset or just your tyres.

If you want to switch to tubeless tyres, we recommend the Schwalbe One TLE. They’re durably constructed with MicroSkin and RaceGuard technology, so you won’t have to worry about them wearing down quickly.

If you have never installed a tubeless tyre, it may be difficult. It is recommended that you get a professional to show you how to do it before attempting it yourself.

Triathlon bike tyres come in different sizes and are designed for different wheel rims. Make sure you get the right size for your bike and wheel rim.

2. Clip-on aero bars

Bike Aero Bar Cycling Adjustable Multi-Position Armrest Triathlon HandlebarImage result for free images of aero bars for bikes

Aero bars are handlebar extensions that provide support for the wrists, forearms, and hands while minimizing drag. Aero bars can help you go faster by reducing drag. You can buy clip-on aero bars that attach to your current bike. We recommend getting a set because they can make a big difference in your speed if you use them correctly.

If you want to buy a set of handlebars, the Profile Designs T3+ is a good option. They are made of light but strong aluminium and have multi-position drop bend extensions and adjustable armrests that are designed to fit the anatomy of your arms.

This is referring to the aforementioned car parts. They are easy to install and can improve your car’s performance significantly.

3. Clipless pedals

Clipless pedals Stock Photos, Royalty Free Clipless pedals ...

You will see a significant difference in your performance if you switch from flat pedals to clipless pedals on your hybrid or mountain bike. You will pedal more efficiently and finish faster.

Clipless pedals attach your shoes to the bike pedals. You need to have a pair of compatible shoes with the right clip to be able to use them.

When you clip your feet to the pedals, you can control the pedalling more specifically. You will also be able to apply power to the upswing of the pedal, instead of relying on momentum.

If you want to improve your performance and do better in triathlons, we recommend that you buy the Shimano Dura Ace PD-R9100 clipless pedals.

Shimano is a popular choice for cycling equipment and tech. These pedals are a good option for beginners who are new to clipless pedals, as well as experienced cyclists.

4. Saddle

Best triathlon-specific bike saddles - 220 Triathlon

No matter how long or short of a distance you’re riding, you need to be comfortable on your seat. Your seat can not only ruin a race due to discomfort, but it can also greatly affect your aerodynamics and body position.

Most mountain bikes and hybrids come with less-expensive seats. If you plan to spend more time riding, we recommend investing in a more comfortable, streamlined seat.

We recommend the Pro Stealth Saddle for its ability to keep your body in an aerodynamic position while providing comfort.

This bike seat is built to last with a carbon-reinforced base and stainless steel rails. The light EVA cushion pads support your bones, and the snub-nosed, deep-recess design removes pressure from sensitive areas.

The device is offered in two sizes, 5.6 inches and 6 inches.

5. Triathlon hydration system

Aerobar Drink Systems – TriSports University

We strongly suggest you install a triathlon hydration system if you plan on taking your water bottle on your bike.

This water container is positioned between your aero bars and is more streamlined and convenient than one in a bike frame cage.

The Profile Designs FC System is our top choice because it is compatible with both narrow and wide-fitting aero bars and has a low-profile, streamlined, aerodynamic shape.

The water container can hold up to 35 ounces of water and has a spill-proof refilling port. There is also a handy storage pouch at the back for extra energy gels or nutrition bars.

6. Suspension

The suspension on a mountain bike is designed to handle rough, bumpy terrain. Triathlon courses are usually much smoother, so tightening the suspension on your bike may help you to perform better.

Make the springs tighter to stop the movement that would lower your speed and make you less efficient.

How to prepare for a triathlon

It’s imperative to train for every stage of the triathlon, but you may need to put in extra effort to build up your biking endurance.

To improve your biking skills, you should go on bike rides frequently. Do this for several weeks, gradually increasing the intensity and duration of each ride.

Take your training to the next level:

  • Pick up an indoor trainer
  • Monitor your heart rate
  • Join a group ride
  • Schedule challenge rides
  • Have fun

A trainer will turn your bike into equipment that stands still inside.

This is the perfect solution for people who want to bike ride, but can’t due to outdoor conditions like wind and hills. You can train on rainy days or if you can’t leave the house.

You should try to keep your heart rate at a certain level while working out so you know you are making progress. You can easily calculate what your heart rate should be.

To find a local biking or better still a triathlon group, do a quick search online or ask other cyclists you know. Once you find a group, go on a group ride! This is a fun way to explore new routes and get to know other cyclists and triathletes. Having a group to encourage you will help you stay motivated on days when you might otherwise want to quit.

This is how you become a more proficient biker: by taking the time to work on the things that need the most work. So if you’ve been biking mostly on flat courses, challenge yourself by finding a course with lots of hills, to build up your endurance. And if you don’t feel comfortable on curves, dedicate a day to practising that skill.

Hybrid and mountain bikes are not exactly recommendations, just ideas


Product Image of color Eclipse Blue

This bike’s aluminium frame and upright geometry make it sturdy and fairly streamlined. It can accommodate riders up to 300 pounds.

This bike includes high-quality Shimano hydraulic disc brakes and a Shimano crankset.

This bike has 24 gears for a smooth ride, and it can be easily modified to be more suitable for triathlons.


This bike has a sleek look, 21 gears, and a hard but lightweight aluminium frame.

The Shimano parts on this bike make it more valuable. The 7-speed drivetrain, universal rack mounts, and StraightShot internal cable routing make it an easy and convenient bike for use in a variety of situations, including triathlons.

The bike is available in a range of sizes to suit those competing in triathlons. It’s easy to make further adjustments to the bike to better suit triathlon conditions.

3. Triathlon Bike

Premier Tactical: A Bike for the Proletariat -
Premier Tactical: A Bike for the Proletariat


The main point is that you had a specific goal in mind when you decided to participate in a triathlon. Don’t forget what that goal was and enjoy the process. There’s always time to improve your performance and get better equipment later. For now, just focus on what you can do and take it one step at a time.


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