A triathlon denotes an athletic event of three disciplines that are very hard to do all at once. In its present day usage, the triathlon is generally applied to a combination of sports events like swimming, cycling, and running correspondingly. In most modern triathlons competitions three disciplines are placed back to back to back in instant sequence and the official time for competitions includes switching legs of the competition and counting the time needed to change shoes and clothes. Consequently, proficient skills in swimming, running, and cycling are not enough to secure a triathlete a viable time: experienced athletes have learned to get through each stage in a manner that preserves the endurance and energy for the following stages of the competition for all of the athletes.
The realm of triathlete competitors is more the most part is divided into three categories: The short course competitions also known as the Olympic distance circuit runs under the banner of the International Triathlon Union which includes the ITU World Championships, and ITU World Cup Series. In 2004, at the ITU World Cup, more than 75 different events were contested.
The XTerra championship series is an off road triathlon that is very exciting and difficult.
The "long course" competitions or "Ironman" circuit runs under the patronage of the World Triathlon Corporation, which concludes every year with the Hawaiian Ironman World Championship. These competitions are not stamped as "official" by the International Triathlon Union but are definitely the best known Triathlon series in the world.
The Ironman circuit was the first major triathlon competition in its class. The first Ironman circuit was organized in 1978, in Honolulu Hawaii. In 1981, the event was moved to the less industrial island by V. Silk. The next year Silk changed the date from February to October. Ther were two Ironman "long course" competitions in 1982 due to this change in the event.
Today, the Ironman circuit is nearly a yearly event run in the state of Hawaii and encompassing three endurance disciplines like swimming, running, and cycling. Being the most well known of the triathlon "long course" competitions is held in Kailua Kona, Hawaii and features a 2.4 mile swim across the bay of Kailua Kona followed by a 112 mile bike ride and a 26.2 marathon along the big island's coast.
In addition, there are many "long course" competitions around the world that serve as qualifying rounds for the world championships in Hawaii. The fill up quickly in resent years regardless of where they are, The United States, Canada, Australia, Japan , Europe, and the Canary Islands which are all official events.
Additionally, the ITU holds a series of long distance Triathlon competitions with races that are shorter except for the swimming race by the Ironman standard. This race is a recent addition with four yearly events in 2005 Many of the same triathles in both the ITU long distance races and the triathlon circuit.