Encyclopedia of Sport: Every sport from around the world

Biathle

Biathle, also referred to as modern biathlon, is a sport that was derived from modern pentathlon. The sport originated with the intention to provide training opportunities for the run and swim portions of the modern pentathlon, which later became very popular and emerged as a sport in its own right.

Biathle races consist of swimming and running as part of a single race. It should not be confused with aquathlon, which also features running and swimming, and originated from triathlon. Biathlon races are over much smaller distances and are of higher speeds, compared to that of aquathlon races. Most races are conducted outdoors, but there is also an indoor variant that is used for training during the winter.

Most biathle races are of the swim and run format. There are a few races that feature a run, sum and run again format with continuous transitions. The most common distance for biathle race is a 300m swim segment followed by 5km run.

Biathle is currently not a part of the Olympic Games. The highest level of international competition for the sport is the annual Biathle World Championships which features races for both men and women. The championship races have about 500 athletes taking part from over 50 countries.

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Check out our Encyclopedia of Every Sport. Well not every sport, as there is a list of unusual sports, extinct sports and newly created sports. How to get on these lists? See What is a sport?

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