How many triathletes are self-coached?

Like almost all of them, just the majority, or maybe a lot less?

It’s just occurred to me that my view of triathletes is heavily biased towards that which I see online which is more likely to be self coached so I guess I have no idea…are there market studies out there somewhere?

What’s a triathlete? Someone who enters a local try-a-tri? Someone who is in a Tri club? A Kona qualifier? Jan Frodeno?

I guess the proportion who have a coach will start at nearly zero for the top group, increasing to 100% for the last group (it’s Dan Lorang)

Are you thinking of drinking from the well @joex ?

% of an IM field would be a good measure.

Utter guesses:
Overall field 20%
Of those, probably 70% of those lining up to attempt KQ.

All based on gut feel ie folk I know (mainly Tri club) who do IM.


No, just challenging my assumptions I guess.

As TRO says, by field makes sense. I’d guess that 90% are not coached. I suppose you could then further divide the self coached into those that have a plan and those that don’t.


Alexa, how many triathletes are self coached?

Here’s something I found on the web. At present, a train rake comprises 18 to 24 coaches depending on the patronage enjoyed by them.

Alexa, how many TRIATHLETES are self coached?

To answer that, I need some more information. Tell me where your work is.

Alexa. For the love of all things holy. How many people do triathlons and also coach themselves?



The answer is as always ‘depends’. The question assumes a steady state whereas my guess would be something like 20% coached all the time 30-40% have been coached before at some point and the rest have never been coached at all.

I’ve been coached before for tri and single sport but it was never for more than a year and sometimes to prepare for a specific race. (mostly bike).

Also, does being in a club constitute coaching?

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Yeah it’s got to be for that season, and I think having done at least a block with a coach,

Club coaching? Not sure

Does Masters swim count?

I guess I think of 121 coaching when Inthink of being coached

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I am coached and I have benefitted hugely from that. It also depends on what you mean by coached as well, just following an emailed plan or someone who sets out what the grand plan is and how to achieve it and checks in with you/trains with you.
I also benefit from training with a running club and riding with a TT club to push me even harder.

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Never, personally.

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That is not coaching, and that unfortunately is what a number of “athlete first coaches” seem to do.



Are you thinking about getting coached or just looking at trends?

Why get coached when you can download the relevant Fink plan in Excel for free?


What can a coach teach me?

I’m untrainable.


Stealthy sandbagging? :wink:

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I seem to be picking up an awful amount of flack for this at the moment, from all my different groups of mates. It seems that being in the public domain is doing me no favours at all! :rofl:

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I think the main problem is you’re actually fast and pretty good.

Most of us say we’re fast but are pretty shit.

Can you see the issue here? :grin:

:joy: No. I’m just in a really, really irritating mood and should probably be ignored for the rest of the day.

In the absence of any real life conversation, on account to being home alone right now, unfortunately for TT, that’s where my nonsense is ending up.

Fortunately for TT my nonsense is totally nonsensical, and I don’t err on the side of wind ups in politics etc. Because, well, I’m a pretty basic individual! :joy:

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Maybe OT for this thread, but I have thought for a while now that the Garmin/Strava/TrainerRoad algorithms will soon be able to create a training plan as well as many ‘coaches’ and also adjust that plan based on the numbers from each session,

Garmin already has a running plan currently aimed at more novice runners I think.
TrainerRoad just launched their adaptive training schedule which I assume is purely cycling based.
Multiport is presumably a tougher nut to crack, but give it time.

Before anyone says “that isn’t coaching”, I 100% agree. But I suspect many athletes and probably a few online coaches think that’s all they need to do. A coach is going to have to offer something different.

Being physically present, especially pool side is obviously a significant advantage. That is coach as a teacher or instructor, providing feedback based on observation rather than looking at results.

The athlete/coach relationship has to be the most important thing. The coach must understand when to ignore the numbers because they don’t make sense or when the current plan isn’t working. Otherwise they will get replaced by the algorithm.