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New Member Welcome Pack
Welcome to Wakefield Triathlon Club, a rapidly growing club with about 170 fantastic
members. Due to the ever-increasing membership of our club, we are predominantly made up
of new members (the majority of our members have been doing triathlon for less than 3
years) so we all know what it feels like to be new to the sport or new to a club. This pack is
intended to make you feel welcomed into the club, and to give you the information and
confidence you need to make the most of the people and resources you now have at your
disposal to help reach (maybe even set) your goals, which could be anything from simply
having fun, losing a few kilos to completing ultra-endurance events.
The club is very friendly and you’ll be made welcome at all training, races and social events.
The committee are more than happy to lend a helping hand and be contacted for any sort of
advice you’d like:
Chair - Andy Blanshard -- 07976 354322
Secretary - Robin Clough -- 07946 940465
Treasurer and membership - David Dawson -
Head Coach - Greg Parkin -– 07866 61309
Publicity - Helen Fawkner– 07957 737962
Web Master/Forum Moderator - Ben Hawley -– 07595 652821
New Members Secretary – Graham Ward-Thompson –
07885 060304 or 01484 860680
Member without portfolio – Ashley Buck –- 07903052003
How we help our members
Any club is just a bunch of like minded people wanting to do the same thing (in this case –
triathlons). So what we do all year round is try to organise things to keep our training going
and have fun! The worst part of this triathlon stuff is training alone so through winter we
organise group training to encourage you to keep focussed and motivated. Have a look on the
club website and you’ll see we usually have a track session on
Mondays, swimming sessions on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Sundays, running on Friday
evenings. We also organise open water swimming on Saturday and Sunday in the summer
(see below). Group bike rides happen on Sundays. Read on and you’ll find more about some
Please feel free to contact our Head Coach Greg Parki, with any
questions you may have on training with Wakey Tri Club.
Wakefield Triathlon Club takes pride in the fact that we always encourage athletes of all
abilities to attend our sessions, enter our events and become a member of our club. If you
train with us you will NEVER
be left behind. You will be encouraged to take part at your
pace and you will be able to build skills in all three disciplines (4 if you include transitions!).
Throughout the year we aim to provide worthwhile fun training sessions to cater for all
abilities in swimming, cycling and running.
Training sessions are periodised around the race season (May to September). This means that
early winter sessions focus on base fitness and technique. After Christmas and into early
spring we aim to build endurance, into late spring the intensity increases in preparation for
the competition season throughout the summer. When the race season ends around September
we actively encourage athletes to rest during October to allow full recovery from the season's
training and racing. Bear in mind that the trick of training is not to thrash yourself every time
you go out. A lot of your training should be easy at a controlled heart rate (talk to Greg about
zone 2 training).
If you ever managed to do a full week of training with Wakefield Triathlon Club it could
include 2 turbo training (that’s spinning but using your own bike on a special frame) sessions,
a track running session, a guided run, 3 pool swims, 2 open water swims (temperature
permitting!), a group ride, and there is often a workshop run by the club coaches. But you
don’t have to do them all every week!
We run pool sessions coached by qualified club coaches. These sessions are open to non-WTC members but are generally 95% members (of all
abilities). These sessions are particularly valuable for people who want to learn, or develop a more effective front crawl technique before racing for the first time. They are, of course, also valuable for the accomplished swimmer to hone their technique, sharpen their speed, or develop their stamina. The sessions are held at Castleford and Scissett pools. There are currently sessions on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings and Sunday morning (for up to date details look on the club website). A number of members also get together informally to go to specific sessions at the John Charles Centre.
Generally on a Sunday we will organise a ride which starts at Scissett baths at 9.30am. This means that you can attend the swim training session and then go out on a bike ride with the club. The rides typically last between 2 and 31/2 hours. If necessary we will split into two groups so those needing to get home can do a shorter ride. Our coaches and ride leaders know all the best (and generally quietest routes) to take. Don’t be afraid of being left behind – it never happens. If you are at the back on a hill you have the pleasure of knowing that everyone ahead of you will have to turn round when they get to the top and go back down behind you to re-do the hill – we think that’s a nice touch – they can’t just wait at the top of the hill until you get there and then set off again!!
Open Water Swimming
Open water swimming is one of the aspects of triathlon that some people find intimidating at first, but it needn't be. (And most people are amazed at how much more buoyant and efficient they are when they have a wetsuit on. We run open water swim sessions on Saturday and Sunday mornings from April until September, which provide great experience and invaluable training for competition. Pugney’s is a Water Park in Wakefield off Denby Dale Road, a venue that allows us to hold our open water swim sessions in a controlled and safe environment. A number of sessions are coached which you can join in. Open Water Swimming is the standard swimming used for most events over sprint distance. You will normally find that any Triathlon swim over 400mts is in a lake, the sea or other outdoor water course. To get you over the nerves of your first open water swim we will happily provide you with a buddy to swim round with you and all “newbies” will be issued with a special coloured hat so the more experienced swimmers can keep an eye out for you. When you come to our open water swimming you will need to bring your club membership card, this means you only have to pay the Pugney’s entry fee (£3.20 at the time of writing). If you forget your card you will have to pay a day membership fee of £5 as well as the £3.20 to Pugney’s. Pugney’s Country Park Asdale Road off Denby Dale Road Wakefield WF2 7EQ
Saving you money!
Triathlon is not cheap; after you have shelled out for the kit you then have to pay to compete. The club organise two series of events, the summer one is largely free once you are a member.
We organise a Summer Series of events for our members every season. In 2010 there were 20 events, including Duathlons, Triathlons, Aquathlons, Bike Time Trials and other special events. With the exception of the time trials, the events are organised, timed and marshalled by (volunteer) club members, and are usually based from Pugneys Water Park. Entry is free, with the exception of the time trials where a small fee (around £2) is payable to Calder Clarion Cycle Club, who organise these events, and the usual open water swim fee payable to our hosts at Pugneys for the triathlons and Aquathlons. The Summer Series is a fantastic way to meet other members, race for free and with no pressure. Many members use the events as a low (no!)-pressure way of experiencing triathlon for the first time, some for hard training sessions to get race fit and practice transitions. For others, it is the focus of their season due to the low cost and variety compared with many third party organised events.
We encourage all members to come down and take part in the Summer Series and, in keeping with the all-inclusive club philosophy, we ask that anybody competing in the summer series also marshals at some point. The Summer Series coordinator for 2011 is Guy Willard. Guy is happy for you to contact him with questions about the running of the Series or if you want to volunteer to marshal. email:
We also run a Winter Series for when triathlons are few and far between. This differs from the Summer Series in that we use a range of existing, externally organised, event – cross country and fell running, cyclo cross as well as one or two of our own (like timed swim, off-road Duathlon).
Yes, we do have club “colours”. You can buy Wakefield Triathlon Club kit at a discounted rate from the club. This includes bike gear, tri-suits and leisure wear (T-shirt and hoodie). For club kit racing kit, email Heather Parkior For casual gear, contact Glenn Whitehead:
The club forum is the best way to stay in touch with other members and to keep up to date
with official club information, such as the latest training sessions, open water swimming
updates and other useful information. It’s used by lots of members to swap racing and
training ideas, to meet up and generally talk triathlon! We really encourage you to use the
forum as it really is a great place for support, encouragement and advice, along with getting
familiar with other members!
Joining the forum is simple:
1. Find the Wakefield Triathlon Club Google Group at
2. Sign in with a Google ID. If you don’t have one, then simply create one by following the
link on the sign in page. All you need is a valid e-mail address you want to use the forum with.
3. Send an email to the moderator (Ben Hawley - to receive an
Using the Forum:
x You can start a new thread by e-mailingwith a new
subject of your choosing OR through the web-based forum.
x You can reply to forum postings in two ways:
1. From your email (hit reply) 2. Via the forum if you have a Google ID
x You can set Google Groups according to your preferences. Sign in, click on the
“Members” link on the right of the page and you’ll see the following options:
1. No Email - I will read this group on the web.
2. Abridged Email (No more than 1 email per day) - Get a summary of new activity
3. Digest Email (Approximately 1 email per day) - Get up to 25 full new messages
4. Email (Approximately 26 emails per day) - Send each message to me as it arrives
x This is a "closed" forum. People have to be invited to the forum to be able to read and
submit messages. The club will only invite you to join if you are a member.
x It can be confusing when threads change subjects. If you want to start a new
discussion, then please start a new thread.
x Playful banter is welcome, abusive language is not! x When replying to forum messages, it will go to everybody on the forum, not just the
What we want from you!
Clubs work well when members get stuck in. That’s what we need from you.
Every member wanting to open water swim will be asked to “spot” at least once during the
season. “Spotting” is signing in the swimmers before they swim, watching out for problems
(so far, happily virtually non-existent) during the swim and checking the swimmers back out.
You will get a separate briefing note before the open water season starts and we will never
leave you alone as a first time spotter. The open water swimming is not possible without 3
spotters for each session.
More importantly, be a good member! Everything we do is in a spirit of fun (competitive
sometimes). You’ll get the flavour of what we are like if you join the google group and read
through some of the postings. Very few things (other than safety) are taken all that seriously.
What we really love is the enthusiasm, energy and excitement new members bring to the
club. This drives the club onwards, and keeps us all in love with the sport. So the most
important thing is to get excited, get involved and have fun!
New Member Support
Well that’s a starting guide to how Wakefield Tri Club can help you achieve your triathlon
goals. We hope that you enjoy the club as much we do and do not hesitate to contact us if you
have any questions. As you will have seen above, we have a committee member whose role is
specifically to help new members. Graham himself was a new member only a couple of years
ago so he knows what it’s like. Please call him or mail him if you have any questions or
worries or if you’d like a friendly face to meet you when you come down to the club for the
first (or second!) time.
If you’d prefer to speak to a female committee member then get in touch with Helen who
(despite having antipodean origins!) is a warm and friendly source of advice.
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