Any tips on learning to Idle

I’m a class 1 unicycler, but I juggle 3 clubs while unicycling. I figure the
next step is to learn to idle, then learn do juggle while idling, and then
learn to pass to another juggler while idling. Any tips, other than “just do


Re: Any tips on learning to Idle

use the search function to find threads with info ref learning to idle
it takes a while
be patient

once u can idle, practise idling with your arms folded to get used to being able to stay on the uni with mininal use of your arms
for now, u can practise riding with your arms folded
this really helps to ‘free-up’ your arms for juggling, poi-swining or banjo-playing while on your uni

keep us informed of your progress

It takes effort, unlike learning to ride which just takes time.

Find a good place, a doorjamb, a long hall, porch posts etc; someplace where you have a hand hold, preferably on both sides. Mount the unicycle while holding on for balance. Get situated. Get in the rhythm. LET GO AND TRY TO STAY ON! There are long essays on idling, what little patterns to make with the wheel on the ground and all that, but this is what worked for me. Try it. Try it as hard as you can. effort is required.

Do what the other guy said too, search out the old postings. Write back in a couple of weeks and tell us how you are progressing. Don’t hurt yourself, please.

Re: Any tips on learning to Idle

“Mike McDermott” <> writes:

> Hi,
> I’m a class 1 unicycler, but I juggle 3 clubs while unicycling. I figure the
> next step is to learn to idle, then learn do juggle while idling, and then
> learn to pass to another juggler while idling. Any tips, other than “just do
> it”?

I’m just learning to idle. Right now I can successfully stop, pedal
1/2 revolution backwards, and continue onward more often than not.
Sometimes with surprisingly good control. My best idle has only been
3 swings back and forth and then riding away, but it is really
beginning to make sense.

Here are my observations: Idling doesn’t come easy or fast. It is a
level 4 skill, so I don’t expect to jump there quickly as a level 2
rider. As others have said, the feel is like a pendulum with the
wheel moving forwards and backwards as you stay in place. I have felt
this, but only briefly so far. My weight is primarily on the seat and
lower pedal. I find that I had to learn to shift my weight to the
side to accomodate the uneven pedal weighting tp prevent falling to
the side. Not too much shift, though, or I fall the other way. Like
other aspects of unicycle balance, this is becomming automatic.

Getting the feel of stopping with the unicycle in front of me, so I
can then reverse was today’s breakthrough. This may sound obvious,
but I now realize that just before I come to a complete stop with the
idling pedal down, I kick the pedals forward, shooting the uni forward
into idling position. This seems to offer much better control than my
earlier attempts to lean back while stopping, hoping to end up in
position to idle.

By the way I learned to side mount before I seriously tried idling. I
find that after side mounting I am momentarily paused in balance atop
the uni with one pedal down. To proceed, I kick the top pedal back
which allows me to then ride forward. This feels just like the second
half of an idle oscillation, and I think it has helped me to progress.
The weird thing is that I usually side mount left foot down, but
prefer to idle right foot down. Despite much more practice right foot
down, I can do the back and forth this left footed nearly as well.

Speedy progress to you.


Re: Any tips on learning to Idle

Idling just takes practise - I never thought I would get it, it took
several weeks of just trying to idle - 2 idles, then 4 idles etc etc
and after thinking it wouldn’t come it did !

I just learnt on a small patio - not in a door frame - think idling
came the same way as riding - small attempts daily letting the brain
process it overnight after 2-3 weeks you’ll be idling until your legs
cannot take it !

I am amazed that you can juggle 3 clubs on a unicycle without idling !

I am a bit of a juggler - can do clubs - but I am waiting until I can
idle with my arms folded (i.e. not using arms for balance at all so I
can use them for juggling !) until I start to juggle.

Re: Re: Any tips on learning to Idle

that’s a good way to get better at it, but u shouldn’t really put it off till then
come on?! what happened to that ol’ ‘can do’ attitude?
get out there and go give it a go
tell us how it went

(dont mind me, i’m just trying to be a bad influence…)

ps. try juggling and riding first
it’s waaay easier

Re: Re: Any tips on learning to Idle

If your idling is stable, go ahead and try the juggling.

I can juggle clubs while idling pretty well these day, even though my arms crossed my idling is still pretty bad.

I can Juggle while idling, it is my best trick.

Start with one ball, bounce it, toss it back and forth, then try for a simple three ball flash while idling. Be patient with yourself and try to give this at least five minutes a day for the next month.