Get Inspired: How to get into modern pentathlon

Samantha Murray competes in the modern pentathlon at London 2012

Fast Answers
Why get into Modern Pentathlon?The chance to fence, swim, ride a horse, run and shoot - all in one sport!
Who is it for?The sport welcomes people of all backgrounds and abilities.
Is there a cheap option?There is so much involved in this sport that it can look expensive, but the equipment is readily available at clubs so you don't have to own it all.
What if I want a proper workout?Every part of your body will be put through its paces! You'll need stamina, fitness and mental strength to go from one activity to the next.
Can I take it to another level?This activity is competitive by nature, so the more you put in the more successful you will be in tournaments.
Is there a disability option?Modern pentathlon is on a journey to becoming a Paralympic sport and in 2015 the first ever para-pentathlon test event took place in Argentina.
Is there a family option?Each discipline can easily be explored as a family and you can build up to the whole event together!
So how do I take part?Go to our club finder page to to find modern pentathlon activities near you.

First you have a swordfight, then you swim for 200m, jump some fences on horseback, go for a run and then finish off by shooting an air pistol. Sound crazy? Welcome to the world of modern pentathlon.

While it may not be the first sport that comes to mind when you're looking for a new challenge, a challenge it certainly is, and broken down into its component parts it is massively accessible.

To find out more about this unusual and exciting sport, find a club near you.

Aspire to be like: Samantha Murray

Aspire to be Olympic silver medallist Samantha Murray

Samantha Murray also won a bronze and silver at the 2012 and 2014 World Championships respectively.

Modern Pentathlon

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Modern pentathlon explained

A day of modern pentathlon begins with fencing, followed by a 200m swim. After that, athletes saddle up to compete in a show jumping round with a horse selected at random. For the finale athletes run a short course then lower their heart rate sufficiently to shoot straight.

Basically, to master this sport you have to be confident in each of the activities involved - check out our guides to each individual discipline above.

The best way to get started in modern pentathlon could be to try each sport individually, although if you are feeling brave jump straight in at your nearest club.

Junior Modern Pentathlon

youth show jumping at the Nanjing Youth Olympics, 2014
Modern pentathlon is a fantastic sport for multi-talented young sportspeople to take up

Modern Pentathlon GB are currently targeting an increase in diversity within their sport, and the best way for this to be achieved is to get people involved from a young age.

Clubs around the country are committed to providing events for young and old, so if you think that your child could be good with a sword and a gun, you know the sport for them!

Disability Modern Pentathlon

Wheelchair fencing in Rio
Although modern pentathlon is not currently a Paralympic event, all five of its disciplines are represented

Modern pentathlon doesn't currently have a vast array of facilities for para-athletes, although that is in the process of being changed, with a desire to bring para-pentathlon to the Paralympics announced in 2015.

For now, disabled athletes interested in becoming involved in the sport should practice each discipline individually, and keep a close eye on future developments!

Coaching & Volunteering

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Murray reunited with first horse

The modern pentathlon governing body are constantly looking to get people involved in the sport, whether as athletes or as volunteers and coaches.

They offer variety of ways to volunteer your services, whether as a general event volunteer, a technical sports volunteer or by getting involved in coaching.

To find out more click here.

What's next?

1. Find Modern Pentathlon training opportunities in Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland and England.

2. Share your story and inspire others!

Are you inspired to try modern pentathlon? Or maybe you are a expert already? Get in touch and tell us your experience of the activity by tweeting us on @bbcgetinspired, visiting us on Facebook or email us on

See our full list of activity guides for more inspiration.