Definitions of "spin", "frontspin", "backspin" and "riding spin"

Beirne Konarski (bkonarsk@mcs.kent.edu) wrote:
i>What is the difference between a spin and a frontspin? Level 6 includes both.[/i]

First, all definitions of skills mentioned in the IUF/USA Achievement Skill
Levels as well as the Skill Levels themselves are contained in the IUF/USA
Rule Book.

The following two paragraphs comprise my interpretation of the definitions of
spin and frontspin in the IUF/USA Rule Book. The actual definitions from the
IUF/USA Rule Book are quoted after that. Other people may have slightly
different interpretations. Please let me know if you think my interpretations
are off the mark or just plain wrong.

A spin is defined as riding in a small circle. Some people say the circle’s
diameter should be the same as the diameter of the wheel or smaller. However,
the IUF/USA Achievement Skill Levels do not stipulate a specific circle size, so
examinators generally require that the spin must be performed inside a 1 meter
circle fixed relative to the floor, since a circle size of 1 meter is explicitly
given for 90 and 180 degree turns in the Skill Levels. However, the IUF/USA Rule
Book does explicitly stipulate that the spin must be maintained for at least 3
full revolutions.

A frontspin is defined as riding backward, quickly rotating (snapping) the
wheel 180 degrees about the vertical axis, and then riding forward. This
must all be done without any perceptible change in speed or direction (of at
least the rider’s upper body [except for twisting which is required to
perform the skill]). Snapping the wheel is done by a massive action/reaction
(180 degree) turn:

  1. Prepare for the 180 degree snap by slowly turning the upper body 90 degrees
    left (or right) relative to the wheel’s direction.
  2. Quickly twist the upper body 180 degrees (the action), causing the wheel to
    pivot on its vertical axis 180 degrees in the opposite direction (the
    reaction).
  3. Recover from the 180 degree wheel snap by slowly returning the upper body to
    a normal riding position from its 90 degree right (or left) position.

Quotes from the IUF Rule Book which define “spin” and “frontspin”:

i: UNICYCLING SKILLS (main section) GENERAL REMARKS (section) SPINS AND[/i]
i: PIROUETTES (subsection) Spins must be ridden around a fixed point. Pirouettes[/i]
i: must be executed on 1 spot. At least 3 full turnings must be executed.[/i]

i: DESCRIPTIONS OF SKILLS FOR UNICYCLING COMPETITION (main section) STATIONARY[/i]
i: SKILLS (section)[/i]
i: 111. a) spin (subsection) riding in a small circle so that the upper body is[/i]
i: rotating around a vertical axis[/i]

i: DESCRIPTIONS OF SKILLS FOR UNICYCLING COMPETITION (main section) TRANSITIONS[/i]
i: (section)[/i]
i: 158. frontspin (subsection) riding backward, rotating 180 degrees around a[/i]
i: vertical axis and continuing riding forward in the same direction[/i]

Adding “backspin” and “riding spin” just for completeness (note that “spin” and
“riding spin” are completely different skills):

i: DESCRIPTIONS OF SKILLS FOR UNICYCLING COMPETITION (main section) TRANSITIONS[/i]
i: (section)[/i]
i: 156. backspin (subsection) riding, rotating 180 degrees around a vertical axis[/i]
i: and continuing riding backward in the same direction[/i]

i: DESCRIPTIONS OF SKILLS FOR UNICYCLING COMPETITION (main section) TRANSITIONS[/i]
i: (section)[/i]
i: 157. riding spin (subsection) riding, rotating 360 degrees around a vertical[/i]
i: axis and continuing riding in the same direction[/i]

Hopefully now the difference between “spin” and “frontspin” is clear and maybe
this post will be some small aid to unicyclists learning these two skills.

Are the IUF/USA Rule Book definitions of the four skills mentioned, clear
enough to all?

Would anyone like the IUF/USA Rule Book on-line? A new one is nearly finished.
I’ll enter the new one, if anyone’s interested.

Happy Unicycling Trails,

Ken Fuchs (kfuchs@winternet.com) The opinions expressed above are those of a
Unicycling Nut. It is highly recommended that you put him in your kill file, if
value your personal free time and most importantly sanity.