Kids that TRI, a non-profit organization dedicated to introducing youth to triathlon, is expanding into Boulder and Fort Collins. This five-year-old organization that now involves more than 150 youth in Littleton plans to start programs in the northern Front Range this spring.
Bob Seebohar, a certified triathlon coach, sports dietician and strength coach for the last 21 years, founded Kids That TRI nearly five years ago to give his own children a chance to participate in a sport which Bob has enjoyed for 23 years since he attended Colorado State University.
Seebohar says, “We strive to get kids to be active, learn how to be good sports and inspire confidence in them; in short help these kids become good people. All through triathlon.” Kids That TRI is set up as a non-profit organization “in order to give back to the community,” says Seebohar. "The non-profit structure fits in really well with our mission.”
Kids That TRI and Teens That TRI participants learn the basics of triathlon from age 9-18. They focus on swim technique, safe and efficient cycling, and running skills, as well as strength, coordination and positive mental skills. Older kids learn about racing and advanced training. Some of the kids have never done anything like this, while a few of the advanced athletes have placed high in the youth triathlon national rankings. Kids That Tri is a certified part of the USA Triathlon high performance development team, which is a pipeline for Olympic hopefuls.
“The emphasis is on fun,” says coach Marco Hintz, who runs the winter sessions out of Lakeshore Athletic Club in Superior. “We are building strength and enhancing coordination with our workouts, but we have to keep it fun and enjoyable so the kids want to come back.”
“This would be a great thing to have in Boulder,” says Russell Herbert, a former member of the Great Britain National Youth Triathlon Team and coordinator of the mentor program for the Boulder Triathlon Club. “I grew up in the junior development program in the UK,” says Herbert, “and when I got to Boulder I thought this would be a great place to start up a junior program.” Last July, Herbert hosted a youth triathlon clinic at Boulder Reservoir to expose youth to swim safety, entering and exiting the water, transitions and race protocols. “I started with triathlon when I was 13. My brother and I raced for the national triathlon team. Now that I’m having kids, I want them to have the same kind of opportunity as we had,” Herbert says.
Safety and proper coaching is a big part of Kids That TRI. Founder and coach Seebohar says, “We have a dozen highly qualified coaches to ensure that the kids have a good experience, fun and safe. I require that these coaches have a special certification in youth coaching, and have developed my own training program for these coaches.”
Seebohar plans to start the Boulder sessions in mid-March. “Right now we are selecting safe cycling routes and finding places to swim, weather permitting. And we are working now to line up some race opportunities for the kids who want to compete this summer.”
For more information on Kids That TRI: http://www.kidsthattri.org/