Back protection?

Welp, my first unicycle is on its way, and I want back protection. My primary goal is learning the basics now, and my long-term goal is riding the local trails. If that means two different types of protection, I will spend it to keep myself safe, but hope not to just hemorrhage mad moneez.

Any recommendations?

I can tell you that it’s 90 to 100+ degrees here for months on end, and I don’t want to get cooked.

Any help would be appreciated.

Here is a past thread on back/tail bone protection

It seem that most find trail bone protection more useful then back protection.

Thanks JimT!

I’m up for almost any kind of protection, I guess. Can’t be too careful as you start getting older. I do have these shorts with tailbone protection already:

I’ve seen some videos with guys repeatedly falling on their backs on hard surfaces, so I’m going to try to be extra careful that I have my back protected too.

EDIT: By the way, you’re age 69 and unicycling? That’s great! and exactly what I hope to be doing into my future, too.

Unicycling is not as complicated or as dangerous as many people think when they start out. In 30 years of unicycling, I’ve fallen backwards maybe twice. If you ride confidently and build your experience gradually, you will nearly always fall forwards and either remain standing roll out of the fall.

I always wear a helmet except when performing, but it is mainly to avoid criticism from other road users. I have never once hit my head on the floor in a fall, on or off road. I did once hit my chin on the floor, but a full face helmet is so hot and noisy to wear that I would only wear one on a really rocky trail.

These days, on or off road, I wear cycle helmet and gloves. Very rarely, I wear KH leg armour. I would not even consider wearing more bulky and expensive items of protection for normal riding.

Given that you are at the stage of awaiting your first unicycle, it seems to me premature to be considering back armour.

Thanks Mikefule, I appreciate the advice.

I don’t know what I’m doing of course, so maybe I’m paranoid. Or maybe I’ve been watching the wrong youtube videos?

We were at 102 degrees the other day, 95 today, so I really do dread the idea of covering myself with insulation.

I find that a hydration pack with a waist band to keep it in place is more than enough back protection, even when empty.

the young unicyclists tend to mock me and call me “robocop” :stuck_out_tongue:

I practice mostly Muni so:
I wear a helmet (never needed it), gloves (needed: broke my wrists twice), leg armour (when I learned those **** pedals were trying to bite my leg :wink: but now they tend to behave, but I hurt my knees badly last year so I keep these), elbow protection (needed only once in 15 years! mostly useless) … but never back protection (really useless) and yes I use high shoes (but it’s because I have some strange problem -bones welded together- in my ankles).
A long time ago I also wore protection for my achille’s tendon because I broke one … but frankly this was due to extraordinary circumstances so now no more of this…

on 36er: helmet, gloves, knee pads and shoes.

I was just thinking about that as an alternative and looking them up on Amazon!

I won’t be far enough away from water while learning the basics, but after that, I will be out and about and I go through a lot of water every day. Both for myself and my dog, who has to cool down by panting, I wouldn’t want to be without water, so … maybe that’s an ideal solution for me.

This is one I found on Amazon that’s relatively cheap and gets good reviews:

A backpack.

A little more multi purpose.

First I decid what I want.

Than I read a lot of reviews for the best value gear.

Than I buy it… I buy it used if it costs too much.

My “dragon scale armour” consists of an Alpinestars evolution jacket with short sleeves. I paid it used 50€: it has proven really good: light, protective, with an hidratation pack: I don’t need a backpack anymore.
I wear cheap football shinguards (important for learning freemount or new mount)
I wear a skate helmet, elbows, wrists and knees guards.

Probably I’m a bit too much armoured, but I landed too much flying superman UPD when using my huni-rex that I won’t regret wearing all those stuff for long, fast or difficult ride.

When learning slow skills (sudden stops, idling, hopping) which doesn’t implies new mounts I use only wrists and head protection.

For back protection I use shorts padded by myself. When was studying to buy or not to buy new shorts I decided the best I could buy was baseball’s shorts: light, enough padded and not bulky at all. Someone linked a Storelli shorts… I recall that is a brand I was considering

I’m not sure what I want or what I should want. That’s why I’m asking you guys. :smiley:

I’m the guy who linked the Storelli shorts.

I can’t reasonably buy used in my small town. There aren’t enough people and enough stuff to have any notable second-hand market for most things I’ve ever looked up on craigslist, for example. Anybody else is a 20 dollar trip away at best, and rarely is it at that best. I envy the folks with good second-hand markets!

A jacket with hydration something or other attached? That sounds cool and I didn’t know that even existed. Sounds odd but interesting.

I know what you mean there – I did see some hydration backpacks that let you add stuff on with clips and such and are prepared for that …

Any specific recommendations would be much appreciated!

Note: I will never be commuting via uni, doesn’t work for the town I live in, so I probably don’t have to hold as much stuff as, say, a student rolling through campus might need. I’m thinking water, a small collapsible dog water bowl, maybe a small repair kit and supplies of some kind? A snack, phone, maybe a lunch?

You and I are packing the same items.

I use a 16L backpack that has a padded back(multi purpose for sitting on).
Contoured shoulder straps, two side exterior bottle holders(accessible with pack on), chest and stomach strap(I’m 6’3" with a long body), and lastly it’s bright orange for safety.

I usually add water filter and small light for wilderness riding. A little more come winter.

I bought mine at Mountain Equipment Co-op.

Thanks, Canoe.

My cycle came a couple days early! I got it today and put it together, taking about an inch and a half off the seat post.

Did about a half hour practice session. Yep, I did fall backwards, and enough to hit the ground … twice! The falls themselves didn’t hurt, but the right pedal gave me some considerable scratches below my calf. Grippy may be great on your shoe, but holy cow, they’re like a mouthful of shark’s teeth on your skin.

I look forward to tomorrow’s session, but I need to get something to protect the back of my legs.

It really does feel like an alien world when you’re first sitting on a unicycle.

when you ride a unicycle, you’re only a few inches off the floor. If you start to fall just bail, you’ll normally land on your feet

I sure tried, but I landed on my back, twice in a few minutes. Which didn’t bother me too much this time, except for some nasty pedal bite under my calf.

I hope, like some have said, that you tend not to fall backward. But first I have to learn how to tend to not fall backward.

wobbling bear, what kind of leg armor did you use? I have shin pads and knee pads, but the pedals got me bad on the back of my leg, under the calf, not the front, when I fell backwards and onto their teeth. If I fall backwards again, it seems likely to me that the same thing could happen just as easily.

I’m unaware of anything made to protect that area.

One of the members of unicycle chat was trying to get the community to approve of him taking his 9 month old on his back while he unicycled was a good idea. I reckon a 9 month old on your back would provide a fair amount of protection.

Dangling him off a balcony or taking him into a slippery alligator pit and still becoming beloved by all Australia sounds reasonable, but I’m not sure what you’re suggesting is prudent.

I used to consider getting some back and tail bone protection during my first year of unicycling, especially while learning to ride backwards, but as my unicycling ability improved this started to seem ridiculous. Learning to idle in particular greatly improved my abilities and confidence on the unicycle.

I remember seriously considering some back protection after a few nasty falls while learning to ride backwards, but these falls didn’t lead to any serious injuries and my backwards ability soon improved.

These days all I wear for skills practice are shin guards, knee guards and gloves; if I am doing muni or distance riding I add a helmet.