The New York Unicycle Club meets twice a month. At today’s meeting, I watched Dave Lowell (D5) hop up a flight of ten stairs. To be honest, I wasn’t sure that he was going to make it all the way to the top, but he pulled it off splendidly and deserves much congratulations. The last club meeting was the first time Dave had succesfully hopped up the smaller (4 stair) flight and now he’s alreeady doing 10 stairs! Dave has been working hard at developing his skills and it’s great to watch his amazing progress… it’s an inspiration for us old guys.
Re: Dave Lowell hopped up 10 stairs today!
What’s the definition of old guy? I hope I’m not there yet. I refuse to consider myself old at this point.
I’m more experienced, and I can’t jump as well as the young guys, but I’m not old.
Re: Re: Dave Lowell hopped up 10 stairs today!
Well I’m 35 and Dave’s 39… which isn’t too old, but compared to the riders who are in their teens, we are old! We’re doing pretty good, though… I know I’m still beating myself up as if I were a teenager!
Speaking of riding like or with teenagers, I just got back from a stay in Manhattan. too bad we couldn’t ride together. I saw some awesome gnarly trials lines in Van Cortland (spelling) park. Sadly it was wet out and I only had my muni and no pads.
Great work on the ten set! Once you can do ten there’s basically no skill limit, like the difference between riding 70yds to 200yds.
Edit: Haha. Beat ya to it Brian!
Alright Dave! The first beer is on me
edit: I mean first fancy coffee
I’m right between you and Dave (I’m 37). I refuse to get old. It’s impossible to get old when you ride a unicycle.
niiiiiiice, how’s the riding stairs coming dave? also which uni was that on, 20"?
Great progress on the 10 stair hop up.
Next thing you know he’ll be riding the top of the rail.
Regarding old: Harper is older than me and he’s not old. Therefore, I’m not old either at 44 (Although my wife just informed me that I’m middle aged ).
You must ride more than me. I’m not yet 37 (it’s coming soon) but I feel older.
Gotta get out and ride more.
There seem to be lots of us middle aged men about, riding unicycles, trying to recapture our youth! I don’t feel old either when I’m sitting down, but when I try to jump, there’s just not as much sproing as there used to be, and it can be maddening. It also hurts a bit more when I fall, but i never let on. (41 yrs.)
Oh, and I’ve seen several of these guys ride, and they’re good.
Hi, Zach! Long time no see, my friend! (I think I forgot to return your last PM). Hey, come out to NYC again!
I’m doing the stairs on my MUni now (the last time Zach and I met, I was beginning to ride my Coker down four steps – and made it a few times – but I stopped because I hurt my ankle while trying).
I can ride down the four steps reliably and without fear now. And hop up and down full flights of stairs now. And a while ago, I rode down eight or nine steps (made it too, but just barely, and just one attempt). All this on the MUni. I’m getting real comfortable riding down the four steps, so now I’m ready to ride down the full flight of steps again (over and over until there is no fear – and until it becomes easy).
Re: Dave Lowell hopped up 10 stairs today!
Wow, I made the headline news! Thanks, Andrew. I’m a bit shy and wouldn’t have posted this! But it’s fun to announce my progress to the world and get such nice comments from my friends here. Thanks everybody.
I’ve been riding for two years and two months. All my skills seem to be coming together now. Finally! (hey, I’m almost old – and a slow learner). It’s a really exciting time for me. I think I will be able to hop higher soon (more height). And sometimes when hopping down steps, I hop off the second step instead of the bottom step. I’ll work up to the third and fourth step. And I see idling (hey, I never really practiced it) and one foot riding in my near future too, I think. My core riding skills (basic riding, better control, basic MUni, and basic hopping) have improved and solidified such that I think I will continue to progress rapidly for a while. Also, my confidence level has gone way up. So, I’m trying more things. And I find that some of those things are in the realm of possibility!
I’ve had many excellent teachers along the way. Not to make this like an Academy Award speech (especially since my riding certainly isn’t going to win any awards soon), but…
I’d like to thank the following people for their unicycling pointers and encouragement…
Jeff Prosa, Brian Maw, Joe Merrill, Dave Stockton, David Stone, (and for a short time…) Zach Jucha, and jediunicyclist (Edwin).
And in a category all their own (these people inspire me to “go for it” – although I will never have their level of skill or fearlessness – at least not on a Coker)…
Brian MacKenzie and Andrew (HCR).
And thanks Evan (total uni) for his cool, fun, and educational video. Not only is it fun to watch, but all the slow-motion parts ended up being educational for me (the pre-hop, the suicide mount, etc).
Note: the only bad thing about buying a Dave Stockton custom Coker dream machine… it’s such a thing of beauty that it’s addicting. I actually stopped working on my MUni skills while I put 450 miles on my Coker. But now I’ve found balance. I’m doing Coker, MUni, and trials. And maybe I’ll even throw in some Coker MUni.
Okay everybody, I’ll give my next status report in two months. See you then. (and expect an awesome video from me some time)
Re: Re: Dave Lowell hopped up 10 stairs today!
I’m at that same stage of the game. It’s also been about 2 years for me since the first time I decided to throw a leg over a unicycle. The longest stair set that I’ve hopped up has been about 7 steps. I did my first 2’ drop yesterday. As I get a little older (almost 52), I find myself contemplating the potential for injury before I attempt certain things
Way to go, Dave. I guess you’re about 3/4 of my age so you’ve got a ways to go to really get those skills developed. I think my longest successful, continous flight hopping up was 32 in Lively, Ontario and I rode down it a couple of times. I rode down a flight of about fifty in Vancouver, BC a couple of weeks ago. I should have counted them. It might have been 52, my age. Riding your age is an important factor. They were VERY poorly spaced stairs with two curves in the flight, too.
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Same here. I am not sure it has only to to with the number of years you have trodden your path, it is perhaps also a matter of experience. At 50 I know a lot more about my body than when I was a teenager. I have had my share of accidents and they have all contributed to my intrinsic knowledge. This experience or knowledge can sometimes make me hesitate when I want to try something new. I have for instance been making a lot of fuzz over the jump mount before I finally (yesterday) landed my first. I think it is important to listen to what both your body and mind tells you but on the same time challenge this ‘voice’ from time to time in order to keep developing yourself.
Well done, Dave!
This is great news. You know I am a big fan of trials and finding lines involving hopping so this is real exciting news. I hope to ride again with you real soon. Practice sticking your landings and avoid extra hops and so much more opens up for you to play on during our rides. Bringing up your skill level is a great thing but anyone would agree you are just a blast to be around. I just said yesterday that I missed your sense of humor. Keep up the progress!
im confused did he hop up all the stairs in one hop? or all of them hopping up then one at a time? cause if he did either CONGRATS
next thing you know youll be hopping up two at a time,then 3,or somthing.
My dad is 49,and he doesnt practice much at all,even though he taught me.I should get him to read this!
Thanks! I’ll take you up on that in Cleveland, if they have any fancy coffee, that is. (sorry, poor attempt at a Cleveland joke)
One at a time! But I understand your confusion. You have to take it in the correct context…
What I did was nothing special. For many, many riders, it’s easy. But for me, it was a major accomplishment. People were praising my progress and just being all-around nice and encouraging. While I’ve been able to hop for a long time, I’ve always had big trouble hopping onto things. Now I can do it.
Thanks, B! You and Jeff are good teachers and I love going on your MUni rides. When I was at Ray’s MTB hopping through the rock garden I was a cradling maniac. Thanks for teaching me that! Also, doing the rocks gives me practice hopping on uneven surfaces (a feature mostly lacking in urban trials). How about a ride on Sunday, Jan 16th? It’s my 40th birthday. And then I’m off to Ray’s MTB for a week.
Aw, you remembered. I’m flattered. Thanks, Steve!
Yes, I’ll try two soon. Once I can get that kind of height, then I know I’m doing something right. (my hopping is not great right now… it’s just good enough to get me up and down stairs!)