I have been unicycling for a couple of years now, but just riding. I haven’t really dove into doing anything special yet, but I know I am ready. My question is, is ankle support from your shoes good or bad? High top shoes or low tops? I don’t care about personal preference, I want to know what is actually the best for unicycling, specifically trials.
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High top shoes don’t give you a significant amount of ankle support - they do protect your ankles from hitting the cranks though. If you need proper ankle support, then you need to tape them or use specific support - but you’re only likely to need that if you have particularly dodgy ankles. I used to tape my right ankle for running off-road, but have now managed to strengthen it enough that I don’t need that any more - though both ankles are still prone to turning over. However I’ve not felt any need for extra support when riding a uni, and can’t envisage any particular reason for needing it (mind you I’m not doing trials and don’t have any experience of extreme riding).
I really don’t need ankle support, I just want to know if high top or low top shoes are better for unicycling, mostly for trials.
I use lace-up ankle braces for trials and muni. They save my ankles from occasional awkward landings, and they give a little bit of protection on crank-to ankle-bone hits.
I think high-top shoes do nothing for ankle support. They do give more protection from ankle-bone hits, but I don’t find that I need that. They also get in the way a lot. It’s really awkward when your shoe catches the crank on the way by.
Unfortunately there is no right answer for your question. Its a personal choice by each rider.
I use high tops. I find that I do get ankle support from them but probably not anywhere near what taping or a device would do. I shop for shoes that have stiffer tops so I do get some support.
I’m glad I had high tops when I started learning unispins. Those shoes saved my ankles from many bruises. Even with high tops, I still occasionally ding myself in the space between the top of the shoe and the bottom of the shin pad.
Thanks for all of the input guys! Big help! The reason I brought this up really was because I am getting some new shoes, and I am trying to decide between two pairs. One pair is high one is low. I was just trying to decide which pair to get based on your input.
I’ve never rolled an ankle sideways while riding my uni, but I don’t do a lot of tricks whereby I have to jump off the pedals and hopefully land back on them. Having said that, I’ve over extended my ankles backward plenty of times and it’s not fun. For instance, jumping off a platform and landing so that the front of your foot bends back toward your leg further than is comfortable.
I’ve found that if I move the pedals toward the middle of my feet during landings instead of on my toes I’m less likely to bend them backwards like that. Also, wearing mountain biking shoes with some ankle support seems to help as well. Plus, I don’t hit my ankle bones on the frame anymore.
I just got a pair of Converse “Athletic Workboots”. They are light, the ankles are high enough to protect my left Achilles tendon, which I kept smacking on the crank. They come in women’s wide, which is often hard to find. I’ve only been riding for a couple of months, so I still fall quite a bit. I also sometimes got my ankle stuck between the crank and the wheel. I really don’t like that; lots of bad injuries could result. The boots are too wide to fit in that space, so there’s another benefit.
In addition, I’m getting over foot surgery. These shoe/boots have a nice stiff sole that helps support my foot. I love them!