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Triathlon | ©Andre Motta /WikiCommons
Triathlon | ©Andre Motta /WikiCommons

How The French Invented The Triathlon

Picture of Jade Cuttle
Updated: 25 January 2018
The French can already boast to have invented the stethoscope, the calculator and the bikini, but that’s not all – they also lay claim to inventing the idea of the triathlon that so many sporting enthusiasts look forward to each year.

A triathlon is a multiple-stage competition that often requires months, if not years, of intense physical and mental training. It concerns the strenuous completion of three continuous endurance disciplines. While there are many variations of this sport to be found across the world, at its most basic, it involves swimming, cycling, and running in immediate succession.

Competing in triathlons as a sport, which is becoming increasingly trendy among the most adventurous types, seems to be relatively new. The first modern event to be called a ‘triathlon’ was held at Mission Bay, San Diego, California on 25 September 1974. In terms of Olympic status, it’s incredibly recent. The sport made its debut at the Olympics at the Sydney Games in 2000.

However, it has actually been around in French culture since in the 1920s. The French were the very first nation to pioneer this adrenaline-fuelled sport.