Hi all - new here obviously.
My mother always raised money for local charities, even at her own funeral last week, (no sympathy please - not looking for that, just mentioned for context) by requiring everyone to donate to Pendleside Hospice instead of buying flowers.
We’re not rich as I had to give up work over a decade ago to care full time for my wife after she became ill, (again, context, no sympathy!) but now the kids are all grown up they pitch in to mum-sit at times and we can do something productive for charity. We’d like to raise money for the Hospice in her honour and hit upon UniCycling as being an unusual enough activity to enable us to do so.
I’ve never ridden one previously during my 52 years on this planet, but all the articles on sites like yours have assured me that I will be able to get to grips with it.
My current plan is to learn to ride well on a cheap unicycle, then buy something sturdier and plan something like a 25 mile UniCycle ride this summer to raise money locally through sponsorship. I feel this is an activity that we could use to raise reasonable amounts for the Hospice and honour my mother’s memory at the same time.
It won’t be a one-off event either, I’ll be open to suggestions from the Hospice and the Community here for other ideas/rides that are open to sponsorship.
I plan to start a blog once I have my first Unicycle and update everyone in agonising detail about my progress, or lack of it
Now - my questions:
I’m over 5’ 11" tall and currently weigh around 13.5 Stones (85 Kilos?), but measurements assured me that a 20" unicycle would be big enough for me to learn on so I’ve ordered a cheap-ish Reflex 20" from a shop sale in Bolton that I found on eBay. It looked better quality than the chinese 20" that were £39.99 from various sellers. If I’m wrong, tell me now so I can cancel the order before the shop opens in two days I’ll probably donate it to one of my sons once I can ride properly.
I figure that my initial use will be some kind of distance road riding for the charity, so I will need a 24" Uni that will stand up to the rough roads around Burnley without breaking - any suggestions for something affordable (nearer to £100 the better, I could scrape more together if needed but disability benefits don’t give us much spare cash)?
I selected 24" because it’s pretty hilly around here, on the side of the Pennines, and probably longer cranks and extra stamina will be required.
For a 25 miler I will have to allow for punctures and maybe spills - any advice on what support/equipment would be needed to make sure it goes off without a hitch?
I have my old skateboard kneepads and my ice-hockey helmet for safety gear and could put my boxing wraps on for a bit of extra wrist protection. Other than bum-pads, am I missing anything?
Looking forward to hearing some of you pitching in on this and, yes, we ARE serious about committing to this idea.
I’m sure we can drum up local publicity once my skill level is up there enough as I have contacts on the local paper, at local CIU clubs and the Hospice should be able to advise us too. Add on the Blog/Facebook/YouTube and so forth, and take into account the fact that I’ve done contact sports all my life so I bounce quite well, and we should be okay
Have fun guys,
TD;DR?: Learning to Unicycle - plan to raise money for charity by distance road riding with it - advice on equipment desired.