Firstly, welcome to ‘Triathlons’, or ‘Edinburgh Triathletes’ or ‘the training/socialising sounds interesting’.

As a newcomer (and we all were at one point) there’s loads of stuff on the internet about what a triathlon is, so no need to repeat the ‘swim/bike/run’ introduction.

However, some people only train/race for one or two of the swim/bike/run options. Clearly people approach it in different ways and their priorities regarding the training/racing/club/socialising vary too. For example, ET has an older injured runner who had never swum 50m front-crawl non-stop. After a few swim sessions, they joined ET. S/he regularly comes along to some of the swim sessions, has yet to do a run or beginner's cycle session but is thinking of doing a triathlon next year.

ET is a fairly large club with around 150 members and it can be rather a daunting experience turning up to a training session and trying to find out everything from scratch, particularly if you are a 'beginner' in one or more of the swim/bike/run activities. “Everyone is very friendly, but it's quite easy to feel intimidated.”

You don’t need to join ET to give it a try, as you are welcome to come along for a few weeks prior to deciding. Just come along a few minutes earlier to any of the sessions, introduce yourself to the coach and you'll be advised where to go and what to do, depending on your level.

Training sessions - quick summary






19:30-20:30: Royal Commonwealth Pool, 50m lanes, club members only.


18:15-19:15: run, meet at Commonwealth Pool.  Generally off road, usually coached. Check emails.



18:30: (summer only).  Hilly time trial and Silverknowes 10 mile time trials.  See website and egroup for details.

19:30-20:30: Spin cycling at Pedalhouse, 29A Beaverhall Road, Edinburgh. Check emails as ET classes are generally Winter only.

18:30: Keira and Martin are leading a mixture of intervals and hill reps sessions. Look for egroup email and please email or text to confirm participation.

19:55: The Meadows Intervals: Not an ET session.  5 x run intervals, loops from 600m to 1200m.  Meet at corner of Hope Park Crescent


06:00-07:25: Leith Victoria, 2 lanes, members’ only.

20:45-21:45: Stewart’s Melville College. Members only.


19:30: run before the swim.  Meet at Stewart’s Melville College.






06:00-07:25: Leith Victoria, 2 lanes, members’ only. 




08:00-09:00: Dalkeith Community Campus, be ready to start promptly.

09:30: meet Dalkeith Community Campus car park.  The rides are divided into groups based upon speed.

 09:30: Parkrun. A non-ET free 5k timed run every week. Nearest are at Portobello & Silverknowes.





In addition: Yoga and Pilates: Classes at Meadowlark Yoga, 43 Argyle Place, include Vinyasa Flow, Power Yoga, Aerial Yoga (don’t eat beforehand) and Pilates. Yoga
develops strength and flexibility to complement your other sports. 

So, how to start?

The free Saturday session at Dalkeith High School (see map at foot of page) is probably the best to start with, totally free, introduction particularly for newcomers. We have an all-abilities swim session using 3 or 4 lanes starting promptly at 0800-0900. Then, grab a bite to eat and a drink and starting around 0930 there are usually two or three cycle groups of varying abilities (including beginners) doing various distances and speeds. Why not come along, introduce yourself to the coaches and give the swim or the cycle, or both a go.


1. Leaving your bike/car

Follow the road signs to the Dalkeith School Campus and most of the regulars park in the main car park situated south-east of the all-weather track. Some ETs will have bikes on roof-racks so will be easy to spot. If you came by bike, ask in Reception for the key to the bike store.

2. Where to meet & when

Go straight to the changing rooms (along the corridor to the left of Reception). The swim session starts promptly   

3. Lockers & where are the coaches?

Lockers are available but most seem to take their bags pool-side. If you are a few minutes early, pool-side is generally the place to find coaches and other ETs for a chat before the session.

4. Food

Quite a few bring a plastic bottle of fluid pool-side to re-hydrate during the swim session. After the swim, for those going on the cycle (or run if the weather is icy for example) a snack and drink can be brought with you or bought from the vending machine in the area outside the changing rooms. If you are just doing the cycle,for example, this is a good time to meet up, and make contact.

5. Type of bike, eg. I only have a mountain bike can I come?

Yes, but make contact with us beforehand as everybody else will be on a road bike and so we would need to arrange for someone to do a slightly different ride with you. Better to have some kind of road bike then you would be part of the group right from the start.  

6. What to wear for the cycle

Depends upon weather mostly, of course. Try a bit of ride a few days before-hand and wear what's comfortable for you, and/or make contact with us.

7. What to take with you, eg. puncture repair kit or spare inner tube and what if you are slow at changing a puncture and hold everyone up?

Try to be self-sufficient, but ET  folks will always help out and you won't get left.

8. Cycle routes

These vary considerably, most weeks there are at least two groups. Again, make contact before-hand if you are concerned and we can re-assure you about distance and pace and type of ride. Particularly for your first time, this can be daunting, but we are keen to help you. Just give it a try.

The free Monday session at the 50 metre Commonwealth Pool, Edinburgh (see map at foot of page) is also in two parts. A run (where no-one gets left behind, and so is suitable for beginners) and a 50m pool swim with 4 lanes for ET shared with Pentland Triathletes. There is a beginners’ lane, with the other lanes for more advanced sessions making the most of the longer pool.


1. Leaving your bike/car

Free parking outside at that time of the evening. You can also park inside and behind the pool (actually it's where the NYD Triathlon transitions are put!) but you will need to wave an ET membership card to get a free-exit from Reception after the swim.

2. Where to meet & when

For the run...

For the swim, if you are a bit early, we congregate in the viewing-area just to the right of Reception. No need to go through Reception, just veer-off to the right a bit a meet us. If a bit late, go straight to the changing rooms (along the corridor to the left of Reception). The swim session starts promptly   

3. Lockers & where are the coaches?

Lockers are available (re-fundable 1 pound coin). If you are a few minutes early for the swim, pool-side at the far end is generally the place to find coaches and other ETs for a chat before the session.

4. Food & drink & Salisbury Arms

Plastic bottle of fluid can be taken pool-side. Vending machines are available too. Meanwhile, the 'first Monday of the Month' outing to the Salisbury Arms (across the road from the pool) provides drink, food and chat after the swim.

The free Wednesday session, using the Ravelston Terrace entrance for Stewart Melville College (see map at foot of page) is also in two parts. A quality run (eg reps/hills), with beginners welcome, followed by in-door stretching/recovery and a 25m pool (all abilities) swim with 3 or 4 lanes for ET. Tackle either session or both!


1. Leaving your bike/car

Make sure you use the Ravelston Terrace entrance. Once inside the grounds the pool is immediately on your right and parking and a rail for bikes are all around you. The main sports entrance is beyond the car park (just keep going right).

2. Where to meet & when

If you are early and the weather is mild, folks tend to congregate outside the entrance. Otherwise through the double doors, keep straight on past Reception and up the stairs.

At the top turn left for the 'restaurant' where the run warm-down/stretch takes place, or right for the changing rooms and pool.

There are other sessions, but geared towards those more experienced. However, in the summer we have an open-water ‘give it a try’ swim or swim&run sessions at Threipmuir Reservoir where the water is shallow and the perfect environment for adapting to Open Water swimming. See emails and Facebook for more info.

How to join… 

Good decision! The details of how to go about it are on the ‘About’ page.

After joining… 

You should have:

  • received a welcome email and been added to the Google Mail group (contact us if you didn’t)
  • been added to the private ET Facebook group, if you wish.
  • you may also wish to think about joining Triathlon Scotland (see 'About' page)

So, turn up to a session, or email, and just give it a go.

Also as a newcomer, if there is anything you feel is missing from the information provided on this page or indeed the website, please let us know so that we can improve our service and others can benefit from your thoughts.

Debut story

We have a document which recognises significant performances including debuts at any triathlon distance. So, if you have completed a triathlon for ET, then it's your chance to get your name on it.

Meanwhile here's one debut story...

"A few years ago, Stonehaven, late summer and my first (novice) triathlon.

I'd cranked up my swimming from 2 sessions a year to 2 sessions a week for a couple of months. The mountain bike appeared from the back of the garage for five outings totalling around 30-40 miles and jogging was erratic around 20 miles a week. I was clearly fully prepared and bought goggles to prove it. 

An encouraging start, with the trusty breaststroke getting me out of the pool with only 4 people behind me. Bit of a slow T1 (no practice I admit) and a fleeting image of the leader (Scott somebody!) approaching T2 as I blasted out of T1 and up the hill. I eased past one cyclist towards T2 (he had broken his chain), and then amazingly clocked 39mph down that hill and through a traffic speed trap. An impressive T2 as I was already in full running gear (so just drop the bike and helmet and go). Pretty confident now as a PB was there for the taking (it was my first ever triathlon after all). I was then supposed to run but my legs had forgotten how. Several days later I finished (only joking).

Good bits...

I finished and was uninjured. I rather enjoyed it, once I'd finished, and my T2 was worldclass.

Things to think about...

Learn front-crawl, get a bike without knobbly tyres, and maybe train a bit. Oh yes... and join ET so that my next distance-debut can go on the GoodOnes list."

Dalkeith School Campus, Dalkeith

Commonwealth Pool, Edinburgh

Stewart Melville School, Edinburgh