I’ve been unicycling for one and a half years now. My preferred stance for trials used to be left foot forward, right hand on the saddle, SIF, hop to the left. A few weeks ago I tried right foot forward, right hand on the saddle, hop to the left and I liked it quite a lot!
I can do stillstands more easily now and in four days of practice I got my sidehop distance and height to almost the same as my stance before. And the good thing is, with my previous stance I used to feel like something is limiting me. I used to practice and see no progress. Now I feel like my limit is much farther out and I can practice and get a lot of improvement before I reach it.
Is the prefered technique not something like: jump towards your forward foot and hold the saddle with the oposite hand so your free hand is on your jumping side and you jump towards your forward facing foot.
I have only ever heard that jumping towards your back foot it worse than jumping towards your front foot.
I don’t think it matters which foot you hop towards, front or back, cos you still have to put relatively even pressure on both feet. Unless you are doing pedal grabs or crank grabs in which case I don’t know which is better cos I don’t do them. It is the hand on the seat which makes a difference in my opinion, you want to hop towards the hand which is free, cos it allows you to wave your arm to displace your weight and move you some more through the air. Hopping towards your seat holding arm seems harder.
My favourite is right foot back, right hand on handle, and hop to the left. I haven’t done much hopping for a while and haven’t tested many of the different ways lately. I wouldn’t say you are weird. Good on you for finding a better way for yourself. I did a poll on Sidehop preference- people have very varied preferences although there is a trend.
I have left foot forward, left hand grabbing the seat and hop to the right. I used to hop to the left with the same stance and I pretty much sucked. I still suck, but that’s the mental blocks’ fault, not the stance’s
Seat in, I hop to the right, left foot back, left hand on handle.
Somewhere I read that SIF was harder if you hop towards your back foot, which it is because I tried it. The uni leans over more, and if you’re holding the seat with the same hand as the foot that is forward, it makes it even harder because that leg gets in the way.
Therefore, I have learnt to SIF hop to my left, left foot back, right hand on seat.
It’s strange, as this is the complete opposite to SI hopping, and I can’t hop SI the way I do SIF -
oh and one more thing, i can only do crank grab to rubber SIF.
I think everybody has their own natural way, but sometimes it’s possible to change. Watching the Fluck high jump competition, I see that some of the finalists are hopping seat out, towards their back foot - so that dismisses my comments earlier!
A big reason to hop in the direction of the foot that is forward is because it’s easier to save yourself if you are forced to bail. With practice you can hop in any direction, but the “other” direction requires more confidence. The more I do trials, the less I have a “preferred” stance. Really, my preferred stance is to be stably balanced on top of the unicycle.
yeah, from what ive tried to see in videos and on here, im not too normal in stances and stuff. i have left hand on handle, left foot forward, i hope to right. (i hop towards back foot) Yeah… I cant hop right foot forward, or right hand on handle. I love to do trials lol. I also cant really hop left. Yeah… w00t
Because there is 2 halves of the body , controlled by two separate sides in your brain, we are a compromise illusion of where we think we’re going. So try to learn skills on each half of your body.
As a long time juggler, on the spot guy, I noticed that I never screwed up stuff on my “good” side, that I was really good at on my left out side. If you can only do it on one side, you will lack confidence in that move.
Ambidexterity is kinda the smooth magic key to the next level, as much as there is one I have found.
I SI and SIF side-hop/crank grab left foot back, right hand on the seat and to the left. I know it’s weird but I “naturally” arrived at this configuration because it “seems” to match the way I used to skateboard; left foot back (i.e. goofy footed) and I naturally turned easier to the left, to the right was more difficult. So by the same token I can side-hop much better to the left than to the right and just like in skiing I seem to be able to turn better to the left than to the right! Not that I can’t turn/hop to the right but it is a bit more difficult.
Today I started practicing seat in high hops with my new stance. After a few hours of practice I was able to stick the height that was pretty much my limit for the other stance SIF(4 pallets, around 60cm).
I definitely like this new stance. It makes my riding more agressive and dynamic. And forces me to have more confidence. The only problem is UPDs. I had at least five UPDs today where I fell off the pallets towards my back, headfirst. I was able to roll out of all of them unharmed. I only bumped my elbow a little bit. I think it’s because my left foot likes to go infront of the pedal, which is back and when I push on the right pedal, the left pedal trips me. I’ll have to work on my UPD technique with this stance.
I jump to the left with my left foot back and my righ hand holding the saddle cup. Joe Hodges also jumps this way. The only drawback is that it is harder to balance on your rear foot than on your front foot when doing pedal grabs.