Paratriathlon

What is Paratriathlon?

Paratriathlon is a variant of the sport of triathlon for athletes with a physical disability. The sport is governed by the International Triathlon Union (ITU), and made its Paralympic debut at the 2016 Paralympics in Rio.

What is Classification?

There are different sport classes that compete in paratriathlon. Classification provides a structure for competition to ensure the success of an athlete is determined by skill, fitness, power, endurance, tactical ability and mental focus. This system is called classification.

There are currently five sport classes for athletes with an impairment to compete in over the sprint Paratriathlon distance of 750m swim, 20km bike, 5km run.

PT1 – Wheelchair users. Includes athletes with comparable activity limitation and an impairment of, but not limited to:  muscle power, limb deficiency, hypertonia, ataxia, athetosis that prevent the ability to safely ride a conventional bike and run. Through classification assessment, athletes must have a score of up to 640,0 points. Athletes must use a recumbent handcycle on the bike course and a racing wheelchair on the run segment.

PT2 – Includes athletes with comparable activity limitation and an impairment of, but not limited to, limb deficiency, hypertonia, ataxia and or athetosis, impaired muscle power or range of movement that through classification assessment have a score of up to 454,9 points. In both bike and run segments, amputee athletes may use approved prosthesis or other supportive devices.

PT3 – Includes athletes with comparable activity limitation and an impairment of, but not limited to, limb deficiency, hypertonia, ataxia and or athetosis, impaired muscle power or range of movement that through classification assessment have a score from 455,0 to 494,9 points. In both bike and run segments, the athlete may use approved prosthesis or other supportive devices.

PT4 – Includes athletes with comparable activity limitation and an impairment of, but not limited to, limb deficiency, hypertonia, ataxia and or athetosis, impaired muscle power or range of movement that through classification assessment have a score from 495,0 to 557,0 points included. In both bike and run segments, the athlete may use approved prosthesis or other supportive devices..

PT5 – Total or Partial visual Impairment (IBSA/IPC defined sub-classes B1, B2, and B3): Includes athletes who are totally blind, from no light perception in either eye, to some light perception but unable to recognize the shape of a hand at any distance or in any direction (B1) and partially sighted athletes with a visual acuity of less than 6/60 vision or visual field less than 20 degrees with best corrective vision (B2-B3). A guide from the same nationality and gender is mandatory throughout the race. Must ride a tandem during the bike segment.

Taken from: http://www.triathlon.org/paratriathlon/categories

Race Format

In the PT1, PT2, PT3 and PT4 categories all athletes will be set off at the same time.  The PT5 category however varies slightly.

Athletes racing in the PT5 category have a visual impairment (see below for details of all classification categories).  Within the PT5 category there are sub-classes known as B1, B2 and B3.  All athletes will race with a sighted guide of the same gender and nationality throughout, where they will be tethered on the swim and run leg, using a tandem on the bike section.  Athletes in the PT5 category are the only athletes that are set off in a staggered start system.  This means athletes in the PT5 B1 category will set off ahead of those in the B2/3 categories where men will start 2 minutes 18 seconds ahead and the women 2 minutes 48 seconds ahead.  After this, the race will unfold and the athlete who crosses the line first will be declared the winner (no times require adjustment).

Get Involved

If you just want to find out a bit more about getting involved in triathlon or want to try taking part in an event for the first time then take a look at our Disability Triathlon page.

Disability Triathlon

If you would like to get involved with Performance Paratriathlon then the best information can be found on the British Triathlon website at the link below.

British Triathlon

Our Partners

Triathlon Scotland is proud to work alongside the following partners and sponsors.

  • Equality in Sport
  • British Triathlon
  • sportscotland
  • University of Stirling
  • Winning Students Scotland
  • Legends S
  • ImacImages Photography
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