A Force to Reckon With
TheTryForce Triathlon Club, of Niagara, Ont. is committed to spreading its love of the sport. Described by members as “a social club with a serious triathlon problem,” TryForce aims to make triathlon accessible to all.
Now boasting over 80 members, the club was started by Devin Richardson who rounded up a few swimmers and started a masters swim group, a spin class and eventually an indoor brick session. As word got out and the numbers kept growing. The original group officially launched themselves as a non-profit organization with the mission statement: “To provide a multisport environment that encourages the growth of mind, body and spirit of individuals and their community.”
Members have varying reasons for joining: some are looking for a new challenge, others for training partners and some want an active social group. New members Jamie and Christina Cormier could barely run more than 5 km when they started. “We didn’t have good bikes, or clip-in shoes and we were not great swimmers, but over time we have been coached, supported, encouraged and accepted. We love the club and the sport,” explains Christina.
From one convener to the recent addition of twelve
nccp coaches and three active board members, TryForce is growing every year. The club has very strong connections with the community and tries to incorporate local businesses and facilities into its off- season workouts. In the fall and winter, the workouts are held at the local bike shop ( Liberty! Bicycles) for spin sessions on trainers and swims are held at the new St. Catharines Kiwanis swim complex. Most run workouts are done along the Welland Canal path.
Long-time member Tammy Andrews says “It’s a club for everyone. You can be someone who simply trains to be fit and never races or you can do Ironman races trying to qualify for Kona. Everybody’s goals are important.” Tom Hunter has gone from casual triathlete to qualifying for the 2014 itu World Triathlon Age Group Championships. “The club is an excellent group of people who are fun, encouraging and enthusiastic. There is always a training partner available, your accomplishments are celebrated and shared and they understand the desire to improve.”
The energy of its members sustains the club and has led to numerous personal bests and dynamic Ironman finishes. If you find yourself in the Niagara region, look them up and drop in for a workout.