I am a pensioner in the UK. I want to teach myself to unicycle but am not
sure of what cycle to look out for. Any sound advice? If it affects things I
am rather vertically challeged - 5’4". Also, apart from getting on and
falling off a hundred times, any good books or articles to teach me the
Thanks in advance
My starter unicycle was a 20" Sun. Its kinda weird because I am also 5’4" Someone said not to buy savage but I don’t know. I have read the book by Jack Wiley “The Unicycle Book” Its kinda old like the 70’s when it was written but it gives alot of information.
Phone 0800 980 0711 or look at unicycle.uk.com
It’s generally accepted that a 20" is a good place to start. I’d suggest getting one that has a kh type saddle, otherwise you’ll end up wanting to upgrade the saddle within a short time.
Good luck with the learning, Keep us up to date with your progress…
Whatever you do, don’t get a savage (as already stated).
I have one, and I hate it
Don’t get hung up on details like a KH seat. Kris Holm seats are a new product. People had been unicycling for years before they were introduced.
Any good 20 inch uni will do. Go to www.unicycle.uk.com which is the UK site for unicycle dot com. Roger there is very helpful. Something like a Nimbus 20 will be ideal.
The reason to choose a 20 is that it is quite versatile, and not too intimidating. It is possible to learn on any size, but the consensus is that 20s are the best beginner’s size.
As for capabilities: i’ve seen people ride 20s off road and down hill; they can be used for trials or freestyle; you can do 20 miles in a day on one if you want. And if you don’t take to it, then a 20 is the easiest size to sell.
And learning? Just find an area with a flat level surface (preferably concrete or tarmac, rather than grass) with a wall or fence at one side. Mount against the wall (put a pedal at the bottom, put all your weight on the pedal to hold the wheel steady, put the seat “in place” and then step up.) Now get your balance, maybe wobble along the wall for a bit, then when you feel confident, head away from the wall.
Just keep trying. After half an hour or so, you will be riding one or two pedal strokes at a time. After an evening or two, you will be riding a couple of yards. After a week or so, you will be riding 10 yards or more at a time. Within a month, you will be riding as far as the pain will let you.
It’s as simple as that. Just practise and learn, and expect it to take you 5 - 10 hours in half hour chunks.
Re: Beginner needs advice
Reply to all
> Thanks for your time and trouble. I have a much clearer idea now what I
intend to do. Unicycling has been an ambition for some years. I’ll drop in a
time or two to keep in touch.
Once again, many thanks. You are a nice and friendly Ng.
I personally would recomend learning on grass if you can find a suitable flat enough area, I learnt on grass and found that it made the falls alot nicer on me and my uni, also I wasn’t brave enough to learn on a hard surface.
Riding on grass is quite a bit harder than riding on a hard surface. Even closely mown grass provides uneven resistance to the rolling of the wheel, and affects your balance. When trying to learn, you should only ever fall off forwards, and be travelling slowly enough to land on your feet.
However, I suppose if you do try to learn on grass, it will make you a better rider more quickly.
Maybe that was why it took me so long to get the hang of it, about two months of much frustration.
Still, it all seems like a long time ago now.
I started riding inside on carpet (probably because it was winter when I got my first uni ;)). Its really a good place to learn because there’s lots of stuff to hold on to, and when you fall its very soft.
Hi there Norcot,
I will add my penny worth as well. One of the things we have found is that sometimes it is better for older learners to learn on smaller wheels, 20" rather than 24" or even down to 16". The reason is that you move slower and falls if you have any are likely to be less dramatic. But… smooth surface is essential! Grass is ok as long as it is solid and smooth. Best is a school hall or Gym.
Safty gear, if you are worried about bones, then wrist guards and knee pads offer confidence.
I have just posted up the dates for this winters UniMeets, they are great places to learn.
If you need inspiration, then talk to Witold, he posts here regularly and is one of the older riders in the UK and learnt within the last 2 years. He is a good competent rider.
Just a word from another old timmer. I am learning in the basement. I find carpet is fine as long as I don’t have to turn. When I could ride far enough that I had to turn I put a large piece of cardboard at the place I turn. It helped me. Good luck. Keep us posted as to your progress.
Re: Beginner needs advice
Just a word from another old timmer. I am learning in the basement. I
> find carpet is fine as long as I don’t have to turn. When I could ride
> far enough that I had to turn I put a large piece of cardboard at the
> place I turn. It helped me. Good luck. Keep us posted as to your
A word of thanks to all who posted replies to my original questions. You
really are a generous lot. I am hoping unicycling will add to my keep fit
regime, which at the moment is mainly country walking. We have a large
garden and outbuildings so a learning space is not a problem now I
understand the criteria. Wish me luck!