While there's nothing quite as effective as working through a year-round training schedule with a coach, the reality is that most triathletes have no regular access to any form of structured coaching. This is where the training camp fits in to the picture.
Apart from the obvious benefits of being able to get away from everybody and spend days or even weeks in a warmer climate with like-minded people, just like a holiday, they do allow you to get individual coaching from the best the sport has to offer.
The following list is not exhaustive but does include all the major camps that we know about. We will update the list as and when new information gets to us, so if you're in the business of providing training, please let us know!
The following are all training camps organised by UK-based companies or individuals.
Robin Brew Sports
We have been on several of the one-day courses and a couple of the weekend courses down at Kelly College. We don't think that any triathlete -- no matter how good or bad a swimmer they are -- could fail to benefit from going on one of these. The ultimate would be that week in Lanzarote...
Information from Robin Brew Sports, The Brewery, 109 Broad Park Road, Bere Alston, Yelverton, Devon PL20 7DP, check out their website for details, email him at or ring 01822-840067.
Total Immersion UK
Total Immersion Swimming Ltd have recently completed their first teacher training course with several triathletes amongst the group who now join the list of intern coaches who will be on deck instructing at the upcoming workshops. One name that may be known to many is ex-Ironman champion Alan Ingarfield. For information contact Total Immersion Swimming Ltd on 0800 3899913, or visit their website.
Team Volcano International
Team Volcano International, the global Triathlon team, have an active programme of Triathlon, Duathlon and Multisport coaching courses working in collaboration with a number of top coaching experts and International athletes, including Julian Goater.
Visit their website for more information or email .
Richard Hobson's TriLiving
Details of his annual training camps in Lanzarote from Richard at 25 St Nicholas Close, Winsley, Bradford-on-Avon BA15 2NH. Use thw ebsite link above, ring 01225-723683 or email .
For more details contact Transition Sport on 0115-914 1337. No email or web details provided...
Runs Sancture Sportifs based in the Pyrénées Orientales, about 30km inland from the Mediterranean.
Steve Trew's Personal Best
Steve Trew runs occasional camps in the UK at Stoke Mandeville and a regular annual camp in Malta. For details contact Steve on (020) 8886 5175 or by email at
David Parker and Ben Pollard have set up Water Works which will offer one-day packages for all levels. For details contact them on 01453-810058.
UK Triathlon Training Camp
Organised by Leisure Pursuits in association with Speedo and 220 Magazine.
Julian Goater's Running Skills
Julian also works in conjunction with Team Volcano. For further details contact Julian Goater by telephone on 01344-421982.
More details from Leisure Pursuits, Victoria House, Victoria Street, Basingstoke, Hampshire RG21 7EQ or by telephone on 01256-471016.
For prices, availability and further information contact: Garth Millar at Bucks Fizz Travel, 28 Oldbury Road, Rowley Regis, West Midlands B65 0JN or ring 0121-559 4221 / 3010 / 8816. He can be emailed at
Activepeople organise triathlon training camps, events and training holidays abroad creating itineraries for any ability. They work with top British triathletes and train with professional clubs and teams in Italy. A new venture is WaveSwim, a series of 1 and 2-day clinics and weekend training camps led by Brian Brinkley, an ex-GB Olympian and ASA national coach. Details at their website or ring 0115 969 2225.
Blue Water Training Camps
Blue Water Training Camps are run by ex-Olympic swimmers based in the UK and specialise in training camps for swimming and cycling to the island of Mallorca, Barcelona, Granada, Torremolinos, Montpellier, Marseilles and Narbonne. Contact James Parrack or on 01753 643607.
Eddie Baud, a former UK Age Group Sprint and Olympic distance champion, is providing front crawl courses. These run throughout the year and are spread over six consecutive Saturday afternoons. The Gloucester-based courses are suitable for adult swimmers and young people aged 10 plus both competitive and non competitive and include video stroke analysis. Eddie claims that he has combined the best techniques from the US and UK to provide a superior approach to stroke improvement. For further details contact Eddie on 01452 520849 or .
Just Sweat No Tears
Brian Welsh, a BTA Level 3 coach, is running "Total Immersion Style" swimming lessons for triathletes. These are held at Abingdon and cost £40 per session which includes a lecture, two 1-hour sessions of technique swimming drills split with video analysis of your stroke and a personalised drill plan. Contact Brian at "Just Sweat No Tears", 21 Langer Close, Branston, Staffordshire or ring 01283 740679 or 0794 7709055 or email .
Several overseas training camps are widely promoted and the following are a sample of these.
Club La Santa
Club La Santa hosts so many of the training camps that it's worth contacting directly to see what's on. Their email address is
Dr Massimo Testa MD and Dr Eric Heiden MD of the UC Davis Sports Medicine Clinic perform physiological testing on clients to form a benchmark as to what level that person is at. Using this benchmark, coaches like Olympian Harvey Nitz develop training programs to help clients attain their goals. They welcome all levels of both cyclists and triathletes from all over the country to their camps in Northern California.
- Terry Laughlin's Total Immersion Swim Camps
- Dave Scott Inc
- Swimming Technology Research
Hotel Acorn Borneo/Sumba, Cala Millor- Majorca
Situated on the east coast of Mallorca, this 4 star hotel complex consists of two hotels. It is directly on the beach and surrounded by quiet roads making it ideal for sea and road training. Also within easy reach is a running and cycling track and 25 metre pool. Acorn Hotels have also recently launched a new program called Acorn Active available in all of their properties across the Balearics, which includes hire and maintenance of professional bikes and secure storage and has a team of professional staff leading excursions for all fitness levels and a variation of routes across the island, also on offer will be trekking, hiking, and a range of other activities.
Acorn are working with Human Race and Sports Tours International to organize training camps and entry into events on the Islands during 2005. They also welcome families and children and can cater for them with a varied entertainment and leisure program. Please email [email protected] to register your interest.
There are many online coaching resources but not many that really seem to be staffed by people who care about you as an individual. We've tried the following:
- CyberSwim Club: online swim coaching with individual programmes; not cheap at $150 for 6 months or $250 for a year but 6 week trial is free. You get what appear to be individual planned sessions with a continuous monitoring programme via email and their website. We really enjoyed the six week trial (normally $40 but currently free) and felt that it looked like a very promising programme for those unable to have a coach on poolside.
Do it yourself
There are several hotels and complexes that have all the facilities a holidaying triathlete could want; pool, good local roads, etc. From time to time we get to hear about these venues and the following list is one that you might consider following up on. Please note: we don't know what these places are really like, only what their brochures tell us!
Villa in Scottsdale, Arizona
Ignore the 18-hole golf course, this three bedroom, two bathroom home sleeps up to six and shares a 25 metre pool, leisure pool, tennis courts, fully equipped gym and all on a private complex with 10k of trails. 300 days of sun per year and lots to do when you're not training...
Contact W Schleibach by email at
Phone: 01784-451234 Fax: 01784-459361
Gite in France
Ferme La Garriguette offers top-quality facilities for sports training and competition with pool and multi-gym on site and the superb surrounding countryside in Provence. Regular training weeks for both professional and amateur competitors are available throughout the year in triathlon and cycling. Nearby Mont Ventoux is an ideal venue for mountain training and there are regular cycling, running and multi-sport events throughout the season.
Owner Peter Coulson, a former manager of the British Triathlon team and now Chair of the BTA, advises many of the world's top competitors and can be emailed at .
Another gite in France
Brian Gibson, former Ironman competitor, has converted a copule of barns into a Gite in SW France. They make a suitable base for training in the area which has masses of trails, miles of cycling on and off road, 15m pool, nearby lake swimming and french boules!!
Contact Brian by email at .
Another gite in France
Belle Buges is Gary Livermore's new Gite in the Dordogne, France. Contact Garry email at .
Hotel Beau Soleil
This Italian hotel has a 25m pool and seems well geared to the runner and cyclist as well. The multilingual brochure could use a little polishing but you get the feeling that they actually like the idea of sports people staying with them -- which is a big bonus compared to some places! As well as their website you can also them or make contact by conventional means. Bucks Fizz Travel has been appointed as the UK agent for this resort.
Hotel Beau Soleil, 47042 Cesenatico, Zadina Pineta, Italy.
Phone: 0547-82209 Fax: 0547-82069
Pollentia Village Club Resort
Situated on the northern tip of Majorca this custom-built facility isn't as extensive as La Santa but it looks well equipped and has been chosen for Total Fitness Training Camps in the past. As well as their multi-lingual website you can reach them by or conventionally. Leisure Pursuits organise triathlon and cycling holidays here.
Pollentia Village Club Resort, Carretera Alcudia, Pto. Pollensa, Km. 54, 2-07400 Alcudia, Majorca.
Phone: (71) 54 69 96 Fax: (71) 54 73 41
The Clyffe House
This small, family run Candian hotel is about 10 miles from Huntsville which is quite handy for events in and around the Muskoka area. Mail the manager, , or contact him at:
The Clyffe House, Port Sydney, Muskoka, Ontario, Canada P0B 1L0. Phone: (705) 385-2371