Any tips on starting with a ultimate wheel?

That is good when you do not have to pick the wheel from the ground literally every two seconds :slight_smile:

Personal log: 6 hours of training; I can land at least 10 revolutions 10 times in a row. From now on I am not worried, I know that the wheel is rideable with a bit of work. The hardest part was to learn how to do the first half of the revolution.

Interesting thing: it really helps to ride the wheel in a wobbling style, I guess it offers lots of tactile feedback. If I happen to ride in a perfect balance, I feel like I lost the feedback and I inevitably fall in few revs.

If anyone is still hesitating, the UW offers lots of fun. BTW, personally I do not feel like I need any protective gear besides long pants (jeans) and gloves. In 6 hours of learning I fell twice, gloves were sufficient.

I’m normally the sceptic when it comes to protection, but I’ve had more heavy falls per distance travelled on the UW than at any time when I was learning conventional unicycle.

Also, rather than jeans, find something with a slippery/shiny surface. I have some lightweight jogging bottoms and they’re far easier to ride in than jeans, even though they are lots thinner.

If you ride in the wet and mud, more specialised leg protection such as KH leg armour is useful — I might even say, necessary.

Good ways to build up your distance riding:

  1. Set yourself some simple obstacle challenges, like riding down a gentle slope, or on some uneven ground.

  2. Set yourself a winding course around cones and try to do figures of 8 and similar.

  3. (Seriously) if you can play mouth organ, or sing, or whistle, try to play, sing, or whistle a tune or song correctly while riding. It takes the conscious mind away from the riding and leaves your brain to get on with it unsupervised.

Interesting! Maybe practicing on the UW is better for learning the seat drag! Trying to learn the seat drag on the conventional unicycle requires almost perfect balance.

I don’t think it’s about pure balance, rather it’s about having iron control of your pedaling. This means keeping the wheel vertical while your feet are constantly moving. I identify this as the hard part for seat-draggy-type ultimate wheeling. Watching the (Expert) Freestylers at Unicon do it is a reminder that it’s possible to do this forward, backward, while operating a prop with your hands, to switch from forward riding to backward and vice-versa and more. They make it look so easy!

Funny new experience:

  1. When I first took the UW, I had to interleave it with regular unicyle because it was so much painful and frustrating.

  2. In few hours (dog years, I mean the UW time) I was able to spend all the training (~1.5 hours) session on the UW, yahoo!

  3. And now I am able to ride 50 meters, and I have to interleave with normal unicycle again because it is so tiring for the legs!

I guess when you fall every two revolutions, actual time spent riding is very small compared to re-mounting time. Well, that is a new feeling and it is fun.

Remounting, when learning to freemount is much more tiring than actual riding. I suppose with a UW it is annoying, because you have to bend down every time to get a hold of the wheel again, where as with a uni, you can most of the time catch the seat in ur hands when you tumble off again.

I was wondering, on in Germany they have a 24" and a 28" UW. Is learning on a smaller wheel easier? I reckon if you want to go somewhere with it and roll off-road (far far future), a bigger wheel is more pleasurable.

Bigger wheels are easier to master, as they give more time for correcting.

I noticed there are two ways the UW are made on the inside :


Wouldn’t the second one be annoying as your feet my slip in between the wheel and surely make you trip. The first one seems much more robust. The second one might also end up getting oval when too much force is applied.

You are comparing a 20" vs a 28" UW. Construction depends on the size.

Oh hadn’t noticed the other one was only 20". Don’t intend to get one so small anyways.

Is it possible to adjust the position of the feet on the pedals?

Right now the riding distance is mainly limited by how quick my feet slip off the pedals. The rim hits in the ankle from time to time, causing little slippage, and finally I have to jump off. So I’d be interested to know how to adjust feets on the pedals without getting off… Can not imagine the technique right now.

Get pedals with pins?

I have major marks on my calfs and shins due to unicycle pinned pedals. I guess that pinned pedals are not any good for contraptions where your only support are the pedals…
I keep pinned pedals on my muny, however after few months and lots of spilled blood I have removed it from my 20" street. Doing 360° spins with pinned pedals is definitely not a good idea.

I don’t do any fancy tricks and love the pins on my unicycles, also with hopping I prefer to have pins and shoes with flat soles. For UW I think pins are only good for people who can easily ride a few 100 metres already.

It is nice to see that flat pedals are stock pedals, so I won’t have pedal bite when I start learning. As I get better, I might get pinned pedals myself.

Yup, those scars look like lifers. Seems an injury/problem largely unaddressed,

Once you reach a certain level of confidence, you will find that when you use pinned pedals you will fall off less often, and ride better.

If you subscribe to the “wheels are round so they can roll” school of unicycling, you will seldom if ever hurt yourself with pinned pedals.

If you subscribe to the “tyres are rubber so they bounce” school of unicycling, you may need lower leg protection, which is readily available.

Even without jumping, pinned pedals do stick to the shoes (as intended). To get a foot off a pedal you need to lift it vertically. Sudden sideways falls can be tricky to land on the feet.

With little experience I have I certainly would not recommend pinned pedals on a ultimate wheel. Riding a regular unicycle is another story: slippery wet plastic is not a near match to good pinned pedals.

I’ve been riding seven years, and yesterday morning I missed a completely routine mount. Pinned pedal, meet shin!

I recommend subscribing to the “you bought those shinguards so you could wear them” school of unicycling.

To (mis-)quote Han Solo: “I can Imagine it quite a bit.”
As the pedals come level, this is your opportunity to lighten your pressure on the pedals (slight jump) and reposition your feet. Not for the faint of heart, and probably to be saved until you are a much more comfortable UW-er.

Yes, pins can get you. Stick to plastic pedals, which can still get you, but I think this is much less of an issue on an UW, where the wheel generally stops as you dismount. You can also try for grippier shoes; both halves of that pedal contact equation can be adjusted. :slight_smile:

Nasty! :astonished:

I’ve been riding 30 odd years but only “seriously” for the last 20, and all my unis have pinned pedals. I have only injured myself with them once (7 stitches in my calf) when I got tangled in a UPD on a short steep descent. I’ve never injured my shins with a pinned pedal.