I know how to mount… just been a while. I totally get what you are saying about making it last. I call it riding the unicycle up. Like coming over the top of a roller coaster. I make sure I get the seat tucked up nice and tight into my crotchal area, try to relax and enjoy the ride up and over.
The day I fell was only the 2nd day I didn’t do a curb mount first, ride around a bit get the feel of the wheel, then free mount after that. I think that contributed to the fall.
Thanks, it’s a good reminder to not get nervous when I go back to riding in a few days and relax during the mount, don’t rush it.
I am using age-old inline skating gear (wrist guards, knee and usually also elbow pads), bought very cheap at a special offer of a general supermarket = nothing fancy. It’s been useful inline skating, snowboarding (underneath the clothing; though I heard that while it protects the wrists, this sometimes leads to some nasty broken bone in the forearm, which specialized snowboard wrist protection supposedly equally prevents)… and these days I use it mostly used for unicycling. With the gear, I usually use a simple bike helmet since I’ve once lightly touched ground with my head. More recently, I’ve had a friend suffer a very serious head injury when a pedestrian (!) started into his bike - so I figure more than ever that a helmet doesn’t hurt.
The gear’s been used so much that some seams and even some of the material are giving in from tear and wear. I’ve never had “bad falls” with it. I’m not a muni rider (!) and generally not a very fast rider, but yes, I’ve fallen with a 26er only recently without being able to outrun it. I wasn’t hurt. I think for standard riding it doesn’t take specialized super-great equipment, just something you feel comfortable with. BTW, I very much appreciate that my knee pads have not only straps, but can additionally be puton like socks - they just keep in their positions so much better; the downside is that it’s warm and that once in a while I get chafing in the back of a knee from prolonged use… but I mind that so much less than riding unprotected.
I don’t think safety equipment makes me more fearful of falls or otherwise nervous; quite the opposite. My very first days of snowboarding taught me the hard way that protection is simply there to take the pain out of a harmless activity when I mess up. If anything, I was initially a bit annoyed that I don’t feel the air everywhere when unicycling, but I’ve mostly gotten used to it…
Sooo - get better soon and enjoy (riding with) your protection!!
When I rollerbladed I used pretty robust knee pads and so did my friends. There were always the types who wore little or nothing, or rolled around half naked showing off, but I definitely didn’t take my cues from them. They were in a world of their own.
You went from no protection to minimal protection. I think it might be a good idea to buckle down and save up to get something reasonable, even if you have to stop unicycling for a while. A few weeks or even months won’t make a difference in the long run … but all you need is one unlucky day riding without protection to destroy either a body part or your confidence.
Confidence is actually pretty important too … I know my body reacts instinctively to certain dangers that my conscious mind doesn’t take nearly as seriously … but whatever confidence I can muster does help to tamp down the overreactions or freezes I’d otherwise get …
I’d get a helmet too. You can live a decent life with a terrible arm or leg or even more than one, but a damaged head, and your joy is probably gone …
37 here, and I don’t like injury: the downtime that ensues is just not worth it. I wear a helmet on every ride—no helmet, no ride—, shin protection on most rides (soccer pads + knee-high soccer socks) and occasionally some cheap knee guards and MTB full-finger gloves if I’m going to be riding fast-ish on rough ground. I debated whether I should wear wrist protectors but they get in the way when grabbing the saddle so I went with gloves instead, mainly to prevent getting my hands gashed.
If I don’t wear any protection I just don’t feel safe. Just putting on my helmet about doubles my confidence. Give me shin pads and I’m ready to make progress.
Lately I’ve been pickup up my kid from primary on uni. It is very very close by and because I came to 100% freemount rate of my 29" and feel very comfy on it, those times I don’t bother with putting on gloves or helmet.
However last weekend I went for a ride in the forest on the 36" on a dirt road and then I feel more comfy with a helmet and gloves. I had made quite some speed and decided with the bumpiness it was easier to have both hands in the air. This naturally ended in one bump throwing me off the uni. I only barely managed to run out of it, but it was a very nice flying-like feeling it gave, being launched off.
Shin pads mostly sit in the way and are too warm. I don’t do any dangerous muni-ing and haven’t had pedal bites in a few years.
I’m 60 and just began riding again myself after a 10 year hiatus. I took a brutal over the front fall today and have a nice collection of sprained wrist’s and major rib trauma. Actually I’ll have to take a break to heal up. I too rode for 40 years without a trace of safety gear. Now I’m looking into what I will need to acquire to continue the comeback. I feel if I had been my body weight as a youth I could have run-out the tumble and kept myself vertical and my footing. Now I’m looking at a few weeks of aches and pains associated with today’s wreck. I certainly don’t want to throw in the towel, but it did dawn on me that my resilience isn’t what it used to be. Once I’m feeling better I plan to resume riding although the freemounting that used to be so routine is now quite the challenge. Let’s us seniors keep getting back in the saddle. I’m told the skills will return in time. Stay strong!
It is not the speed that is the problem but the deceleration when you stop. I have come off my 36 at over 20 kph sliding down the road without injury but been in pain for weeks after falling from my stationary 20 in a stalled takeoff.
Sliders are essential if you are going to ride at speeds you can’t run out of.
I have skater knee and elbow sliders, Hillbilly gloves as well as hip pads.
I have had some non-Uni related injury’s over the last 12 months that kept me from riding. A torn meniscus needed surgery and torn rotator cuff that healed with therapy along with some arthritis in my hips (getting old). I started to ride again a little about 6 weeks ago. I had my first shoelace wrap ever in my life and went down hard on my back on the concrete trail and hit so hard it cracked my helmet. Worst fall I ever had on a Uni. I was very glad I was wearing my camel back or I think I may have been injured a lot worse.
I was out on my oracle a few weekends later on a trail in the woods and came off unexpectedly and caught myself with a sharp rock just inch’s from my nose. I must admit I am starting to reevaluate my riding. I ride by myself so when doing Muni if something were to happen there in no one to help. I am not going to stop riding but I may change my riding style and the intensity. The reflexes are not what they were and it takes so much longer to heal.
I wear knee and shin protection, wrist guards and a helmet. I have some hillbilly shorts I bought a few years ago and never tried but I may give them a go.
That is so true. I’ve seen someone dismount while gliding downhill at over 20 mph, but thanks to the basic volleyball kneepads and bike gloves he was wearing, he just slid to a top on his hands and knees.
On another occasion, I was at a small uni convention where one of the hosts got on her uni to go once around the track before many people had even arrived, had a foot slip off while mounting, and later came back from the hospital with a broken wrist on one side, jammed elbow or fingers (or both; it wasn’t pleasant) on the other side, and a big fat bandage on one knee. Poor Mrs. Granberry! And of course no safety gear on, she was just going to ride for a few minutes at a comfortable pace!
Sure, gliding to a halt is comfy as feathers—I did it off a motorbike on grass and felt nothing. But on gnarly terrain, let alone a tree or a big rock, basic physics tells us pain is directly proportional to velocity. The biggest fear of all is, for me at least, the face plant.
Regarding the wrist protectors: I had the same experience - I actually hurt myself because I couldn’t grab the saddle properly (bashed my finger badly). If you want to also protect your wrists I strongly recommend you get yourself the KH gloves. I think they were designed to give you the freedom to grab the saddle: they are fantastic, their incorporated wrist guard is quite flexible and it doesn’t run into your hand. You can tell they were designed for the unicyclist needs in mind. In terms of protection they might not be as good as a ‘full on’ wrist guard protector but they definitely protect your wrist quite a bit (I have fallen badly on my hands a few times and without them I would have definitely sprained my wrist more than once). I would say is the best compromise in terms of protection and freedom of hand movement.
I have gone through a couple of pairs now. They are very good quality. Worth every penny