Herndon Kids Triathlon

814 Ferndale Ave
Herndon, VA 20170

Triathlon > Sprint

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Event Description

This event is designed for youth ages 6-16, regardless of athletic ability or prior triathlon experience.  The courses and distances were created to be achievable for all participants.  The philosophy is completion rather than competition.  We want all of our young triathletes to walk away from the event with a sense of pride in knowing that they completed a triathlon.  Every participant receives a medal when they cross the finish line.

Detailed event information will be posted online at www.herndon-va.gov (parks and recreation department) and at the Herndon Community Center.  Registration will be available online at herndon-va.gov or active.com

Event will be held in and around the Herndon Community Center. Swim in indoor pool, and biking and running on W&OD Trail.

July 1-August 4                  $45
August 5-September 4        $50
September 5-15 at noon     $55

No race day registration.  Register early.  Also, check out our free clinic which is being held on Sunday, August 27 at 10:00am at the Herndon Community Center.  Call 703-787-7300 for more information.

Herndon Kids Triathlon is seeking and needs volunteers for:
Course Marshals             Registration Check-In
Finish Line Support         Intersection Crossing Marshals

Event details and schedule

Thank you for entering the Herndon Kids Triathlon produced by the Herndon Parks and Recreation Department. We hope you enjoy the race, and that this experience helps you develop healthy lifestyle habits from the great sports of swimming, cycling, and running.

This kids triathlon gives youngsters a great opportunity to compete in one of the fastest growing sports in the United States. This event is designed for any youth, ages 6-16, regardless of athletic ability or prior triathlon experience. The courses and distances were created to be achievable for all participants. The philosophy is completion rather than competition. We want all our young tri-athletes to walk away from the event with a sense of pride in knowing that they completed a triathlon.

Every participant receives a t-shirt, swim cap and medal for participating.


DATE:Sunday, September 17, 2023                 TIME: 8:00am


LOCATION:  Herndon Community Center, 814 Ferndale Avenue, Herndon, VA

Online registration active.com (additional fees apply)

Online registration http://herndon-va.gov/recreation/special-events/kids-triathlon


FEES:                         July 1-August 4                    $45

                                  August 5-September 4          $50

                                  September 5-15 at noon       $55


EARLY PACKET PICK-UP: Race packets can be picked up at the Herndon Community Center on Saturday, September 16, 10am-12pm.

Athletes will still need to check in on the day of the race.


DIVISIONS                                                    COURSE

Age*                                       Swim              Bike                Run

6-8                                          50yds             1.1 miles        0.6 mile

9-11                                        100yds           2.0 miles        1.0 mile

12-13                                      150yds           4.0 miles        1.4 mile

14-16                                      150yds           4.0 miles        1.4 mile

*Age as of September 17, 2023


Parents/Guardians are responsible in reviewing the race rules with their children before they participate in the triathlon. All athletes need to be taught on how to participate safely in all three sport events.


All athletes need to pay attention while participating in all three events to notice signage and volunteers providing directions. When cycling, cyclists need to cycle at safe speeds and be alert to see volunteers to safely turn at the turn around points.  The same applies to the run course. 


The triathlon will take place in and around the Herndon Community Center. The swimming event will take place at the center’s indoor pool. The bike course will be on the W&OD Trail heading west with an out and back route. The running course will be on the W&OD Trail heading east with an out and back route.



Don’t get stressed out over this. (Parents, this means you too!) It is intended to be fun and non-competitive. This is an introduction for kids to triathlon, as well as the individual sports of swimming, cycling, and running. Please keep that in mind, and encourage all the participants, not just your own child. No pets (dogs) are allowed in and around the event.


Parents: You, not us, are in the best position to determine whether your child is physically fit and healthy enough to participate in this event. Only you know your child’s readiness and his/her health conditions, not us. If you have any questions, don’t push it. If your child is afraid to do this, don’t force them. If your child has any developmental or health condition that makes it unsafe or even questionable for them to safely participate in this event, please do not enter him/her or allow him/her to race. Safety first! Let’s make this a positive experience for your child, not a negative one.


Kids: If at any point during the event you feel dizzy, sick, throw-up, your heart is beating too fast, or you can’t breathe, please stop racing and move to the side of the course. Wait for a volunteer to come by to check on you, but do not leave with anyone other than your parents. It is perfectly fine to stop your race. We will do it again next year. Parents, please reinforce this with your child.



We will review the weather conditions on race morning. The race is intended to be a fun and enjoyable event for everyone…if it is raining and radar shows it will continue, we will most likely NOT race and will make every effort to reschedule soon. Official announcements of any rescheduling if necessary, would be made on race morning at the race site on herndon-va.gov and by calling 703-435-6866.



Parents and spectators may NOT park along Ferndale Avenue from Vine Street to the W&OD Trail. There is limited parking at the Herndon Community Center (814 Ferndale Avenue). Athletes may be dropped off with their equipment then vehicle drivers must immediately drive to the overflow parking area which is located at Herndon Middle School (901 Locust Street). Vehicles are not permitted to remain unattended or idling in the parking lot.  Unload equipment and park vehicle.  Please be prepared if you must use the Herndon Middle School parking lot. Be respectful of residents, driveways, and fire hydrants.



Restrooms are available in the Herndon Community Center and outside in Bready Park.



All athletes must check in even if you have your race packet. When you arrive at the check-in the athlete must be present with their helmet and bike. At check in athletes will be “body marked” with a sharpie marker on their arm with their race number and age, helmet and bike brakes will be checked and given a race packet. If your helmet is cracked or has been involved in a crash of any kind, you need a new one. Your helmet and bike’s brakes will be inspected for basic use. There will be several lines to accommodate athletes checking in.


Race Packets will contain – bib number with safety pins, swim cap, t-shirt, timing chip/ ankle strap and giveaways.


After you check in, please remove the race bib from bag and pin it to the front of the shirt that will be worn for the bike and run. The number must be worn on the front of your body during the bike and run. You do not have to wear the number during the swim.


Place your bike, shirt and gear in the assigned sections of the transition area. The transition area will open at 6:00am and close at 7:15am. After that, no spectators or parents will be allowed inside the transition area. All athletes should be wearing their swim caps before they arrive at the pre-race meeting at 7:30am.


The race starts at 8:00am. Plan to arrive early to get set up. The transition area will open at 6:00am. Please do NOT arrive before 6:00am.

On race day, participants will receive the timing chip at check in. The timing chip is attached using an ankle strap.  Failure to wear a timing chip during the event will prevent the participant from being timed. 


Parents please do not mix up the timing chips if you have more than one child. Strap is placed around the ankle, please ask one of the volunteers if you are uncertain on how to place it on ankle.


The time is electronically monitored each time your child steps on the timing mats near the entrance and exits to the transition zone and at the finish line. The mats are activated at the start of the first age group race. Therefore, if your child is in a later age group, they must not step on the timing mat before their event if he/she is wearing a timing chip. Please remind your kids to step on these mats only during their race to ensure their time is correctly recorded. 



Once the athlete has checked in and places their race bib on their shirt, they can proceed to the transition area to organize their equipment. (Bike, helmet, shirt to be worn for bike and running events, shoes, etc.) There will only be one transition area.  This is where the athlete will retrieve their bike, helmet, shoes, and shirt for the bike and running events.  Please use the space that has been pre-assigned to organize the equipment.



The meeting will be held in the Herndon Community Center gymnasium at 7:30am. Race officials will go over some of the more important rules and stress any special points or rules to be aware of during the race. Any last-minute changes to the routes or racer schedule will be announced and answer any questions. Athletes are to wear swim caps to the pre-race meeting. Following the pre-race meeting the athletes will be led to the indoor swimming pool to begin the event.



Maps for the Swim, Bike, and Run Courses will be available for viewing and download at herndon-va.gov  (click on parks and recreation department). All parents and participants MUST review the course maps before the race. Race maps are now available.


The Swim

Following the pre-race meeting athletes will be taken inside to the indoor people. Parents/Spectators are allowed to sit on the pool bleachers inside the pool area.  No parents/spectators allowed on the pool deck.  Parents/Spectators need to use the center’s front entrance to enter and exit the building.  Direction will be given to athletes prior to the swim start and assistance with directions will be provided upon exiting the pool.  Once the athlete completes the swim event, they will exit the pool area using the side door and follow the path leading to the transition area to get their bike.

When the swim event begins, the starter will allow participants into the pool to begin their race one at a time in 10 second intervals. Each participant will swim 25 yards down the length of the pool, cross under the lane line, and swim 25 yards back in the next lane. Goggles are encouraged. Swim caps must be worn.


All athletes are provided with a colored swim cap. If you become tired or need help, raise your hand to signal the lifeguard. You are welcome to hang onto the pool wall to rest, but you should not advance forward by using the wall. We will track each child entering the pool using the final registration list based on completed packet pickup. Once you complete the swim, proceed to your bike in transition area.


Parents/Spectators are allowed to sit on the pool bleachers inside the pool area. They are not allowed to be on the pool deck. They must use the centers front entrance for entering and exiting the building.  Numerous lifeguards will be in the pool and on the pool deck to assist swimmers.


The Bike Course

Once the athlete completes the swim event, they will exit the side door of the pool and walk on the path leading to the transition area. They will proceed to their assigned spot which will match their bib number and numbers on their body.


Once the helmet is on (with chinstrap fastened), shoes on, and shirt on with bib number attached to the front of the shirt you may walk your bike to the “Mount/Dismount Line” at the exit of transition area to begin the bike ride. Do not attempt to cycle in the transition area. You WILL NOT be allowed to leave the bike area until your helmet is on and fastened securely. Assistance is provided to direct athletes to the “Mount/Dismount Line”.


Pay attention to other athletes as you leave the transition area. Athletes will bike to the W&OD Trail and will be biking west. This is an out and back route. The trail will be open for public use during the event. Course Marshals will be watching for vehicles and other trail users, but you should watch too. Safety first…look both ways…left, right, left…if all clear and the course marshal says “okay,” then begin your bike ride. Again, proper helmets are required. No helmet, no race.


Participants should know how to cycle on the W&OD Trail in a safe manner. Stay in lane in a single file line and pass only on the left. Only pass if able to pass safely in the left lane.



Race officials will not check bikes for mechanical condition prior to the event.

We encourage you to have your child's bike checked by a qualified bike mechanic before race day.



When you complete the bike course you will get off your bike at the Mount/Dismount Line before the entrance to the transition area and walk it to your same transition space. Once you park your bike, you may begin the run course. The run course will be on the W&OD Trail heading east. While traffic will be very light, the streets will not be closed to vehicle traffic. Arrow signs and course marshals will be stationed along the run course to guide you.


Participants should know how to run on the W&OD Trail in a safe manner. Stay in lane in a single file line and pass only on the left. Only pass if able to pass safely in the left lane. 

Run completely through the finish line. You will be directed to the Kid’s Corral where your timing chip and ankle bracelet will be removed. You will receive your participation medal and at this time, one parent, one parent only, who is wearing the event wrist bracelet, will be permitted to enter the Kid’s Corral to gain custody of you.  Keep hold of your race number as you will need to show this when collecting your finisher’s medal and for collecting your bike from the transition area. After you have got your breath back, return to the transition area to collect your bike and helmet.



To help all athletes know where to go for each course, we will have signs with large arrows along the course to guide the racers. We will also have course marshals stationed around the bike and run course to help guide kids in the right direction and otherwise help if necessary. We will have signs, cones, and course marshals to help warn motorists. Assistance will be provided to help warn motorists/athletes at busy intersections and where athletes need to turn around. Keep in mind this is not a “closed course.” It will be open to traffic. Kids should obey traffic signs. If they see a stop sign, they should stop. Athletes should also watch for traffic at any cross street. Please remind your kids of this.



Each athlete will be presented with a special Herndon Kids Triathlon medal after they cross the finish line. Upon finishing volunteers will be collecting the timing chip and ankle strap from each athlete. All finishers will enter the Kids Corral where one parent/guardian who is wearing the event wrist bracelet will take custody of their child(ren). Only one parent/guardian is permitted to enter the Kid’s Corral area. Children will only be released to the adult who has the event wrist bracelet. No exceptions will be made.

You are encouraged to photograph your child at the photo-op location. We will have after race snacks and drinks for the athletes after the race.



Race results will be posted after the event at www.herndon-va.gov (click on parks and recreation department). By entering the event, you consent on behalf of yourself and your child to the results posting on the website.



A water station may be located near the Transition Zone exit for the run and additional water stations will be located on the run route. We do not supply water on the bike course, but experienced bike riders may have a proper water bottle rack on their bike and take water while riding if it is safe to do so. Practice before the race for taking water while riding a bike is recommended.



A first aid station will be located near the Transition Zone. In the event of an accident requiring first aid the child and his/her parent should report to first aid.


Volunteers on the bike and run course will communicate to first aid volunteers’ assistance is required out on the course. The swimming is monitored by one or more lifeguards and volunteers.


Parents and Spectators

Please do NOT follow your participant around the course, whether on foot, bike, car, etc. This will only create a danger to other children or yourself. Event organizers will not allow non-participants on any of the three courses at any time during the event.

Event Location & Accomodations

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