getting stuck at the first half pedal stroke

Does anyone have any advice for this issue:

Im getting stuck when taking off from a wall mount. What happens is I take that first half to three quarter pedal stroke where one pedal is straight up and the other is straight down and then it seems like the pedals just want to stop. My feet feel like there doing the correct thing because my bottom foot comes off the pedal. Its like my leg is still moving but the pedal just doesnt rotate back up.

Is this just the normal newbe issue? Also, how much weight do you keep on your legs vs the seat? could it be I need to relax my legs more and put more weight on the seat? I feel like I have no leverage to get the uni moving and the pedals are too far behind me. Could that be a posture issue or possible seat adjustment backward/forward? My height should be good, leg slightly bent at full extension.

Your problem is your wheel size. This is why people recommended a 20" in your earlier thread about picking a do all wheel size. With a larger wheel, it can be very difficult to put enough force on the pedals to get going sometimes. This larger wheel size will also affect your ability to turn. You probably don’t need to worry about how much weight you put on the seat, just focus on staying on the thing. As you get better at riding, you will probably put more weight on the seat gradually without even thinking about it.

I’d recommend a search. There’s tons of info out there about learning to ride.

It’s not wheel size (unless you’re on a Coker or something). Mostly it’s newbieism. If you’re already ahead of the wheel, you’re already on your way off anyway. I think your first mistake is riding away from the wall. To learn the basics of keeping the wheel under you, stay with your support. The best thing to use (other than a human spotter) is a chain link fence next to a sidewalk, or a railing, or a low wall. But a regular wall will do.

It is normal for beginners to get one foot stuck at the bottom, in what’s called the Dead Spot. No leverage there. Try to pedal from horizontal to horizontal, half a wheel turn at a time. Search around for lots of detailed descriptions for learning to ride, there are tons of threads about it.

Yes. You’ll get past this with practice.

Definitely. It is much easier to spin smooth circles when you are sitting down on the seat. Try to relax into the seat.

Are you still using 125mm cranks with a 29" wheel? You have to push pretty hard to get the wheel going. I can see how it would be easy to end up stuck with all your weight on the bottom pedal. It might help if the wheel is already moving when you let go of the wall. Have you tried rolling along the wall for a few revolutions before launching off?

A 29 inch wheel with 125mm cranks equals a big gear. As Aaron suggested, more momentum would help you get over that initial enertia.You could put larger cranks on,which would give you more torgue, making it much easier to spin that big wheel. The reason your getting stuck in the dead spot is that with such a big gear,your first pedal stroke is very slow and is not giving you enough momentum to carry you through that dead spot. An experienced unicyclist could do a standing start with that set up,but that’s because his leg muscles are well developed for unicycling. If I’m pulling off in big gear I pull up on the hand grip while pushing down on the pedal.I’m running 89mm cranks on my 29er and even with a rolling mount,I pull up on the hand grip to give me extra leverage while pushing down on the pedals just till I get rolling. Then I can take my hand off the hand grip if I wish. So maybe, try pulling up on the hand gri until you get rolling. Hope this helps.

Johnfoss’s advice is spot on- stay with your support- riding along the wall with the help of your hands, until your can get through the ‘dead spot’.

Learning on a 29-er with 125 cranks is an heroic feat- would be a lot easier, I think, if you could get some 150 cranks.

At this stage, don’t worry too much about not having all your weight on the seat- when you can ride, you’ll then work on getting more on your weight on the seat, but, for now, as you’re learning the basics, I’d just do what feels most effective for you- you’ll have plenty of other things to be thinking about.

Why is this the answer to almost any question on here??
The forum may as well be closed down and left for people to search back for any info they require.

I’m sure this has been asked before - did you do a search? :smiley:

Getting “jammed” in the 6/12 position will continue to be a bane during your unicycle training. During mounting practice trying to get your foot on the pedal properly, then starting to peddle while trying to get settled down on the seat you’ll get plenty of practice dealing with this. Just yesterday I had an awesome fall right onto both hand guards trying to curb mount onto a recently asphalted road. Threw the uni quite a ways behind me, too.

Just as suggested, definitely spend some time going up and down a wall or fence (rod iron if you can find one!). Absolutely get used to spinning around in place against the wall to change direction. Then you are ready for the fun part: trying to go straight by letting go of your support!

I actually like these guy’s video. Don’t expect the freemounting to just be a snap though, that’s a long way away unless you are uber talented.

It’s an easy way for people to get a boost in their post count, and give the impression that somehow help is being offered.

As a new member of the forum you may have a hard time recognizing credible posts, and so it may be helpful to pay attention to any advice John Foss puts forth.

And now my post count is up. Yay.

Try putting the least amount of pressure on the pedals that you can. Imagine that there are eggs strapped to the bottom of your feet, and you’re trying to avoid crushing the eggs. That’s about how little pressure you need in order to maintain control on flat smooth ground.

Try to find the smoothest flattest surface possible – a gym floor would be ideal, if that’s not possible then something like slab concrete with no cracks or undulations.

I’m just trying to get my post count up huh? That’s funny. I’d go piss around in JC to do that.

My recommendation was a sincere one. Does the OP have to do that? NO! It’s simply a suggestion. Instead of waiting for others to post about how this is normal and you just need to keep practicing, they could do a search, and perhaps find the answer right now. But if they decide they don’t want to search (or perhaps they did and couldn’t find any helpful threads) people still reply anyway. Just because someone comes along and says ‘try a search’ doesn’t mean you have to.

This forum is great. I’ve learned more on here than I could have any other way. Have I started redundant threads on here? You bet. I’m usually told to do a search, and whaddya know, I find what I’m looking for. Most times though, I do try and search before hand.

Jtrops is right. Newcomers will have a hard time recognizing credible posters, so don’t listen to me, cause I’m far from credible. Listen to John Foss, Terry the Unigeezer, Corbin, Leo, Mikefule, etc. Jtrops was extremely helpful in one of my recent threads as well, so I’d recommend listening to him too.

I’m trying to get my post count up? Yep, and here’s one more. Maybe I should post again, and get to 300.

But please let me finish by saying that if any offense was taken by my recommendation of a search, I humbly apologize.

Thanks for the kind words. Sarcasm is difficult to read on forums, so it’s always a risk. I’m sorry if the humor wasn’t well considered.

And perhaps I took it a bit hard. But my last post was in response to the others in this thread that seemed upset over my post as well.

Anyway, I’m done with this. All’s well.

And here’s 300. :smiley:

This from a guy who always says “Que?” Well Manuel, the reason is because it’s true. Rather than have us all write the same information again, why not offer someone to browse the wealth of information that’s already written? It’s there to read now, rather than waiting for us to write it all again. With comments, and even with people many years ago saying the same thing you did. :slight_smile:

The rules don’t change for a bigger wheel, really. Actually, short cranks on a bigger wheel should make it easier to get past the dead spot, but also “messier” as the wheel makes larger oscillations when it’s not doing what you want.

Hello John, let’s look at it another way. If you had to loosen a tight nut, which would you choose? A wrench with a long handle or a wrench with a short handle. I think you would choose the wrench with the long handle.Once you’ve achieved the initial stiff turn you might choose to continue with the wrench with the shorter handle.But that initial turn would require the torque/leverage that the longer handle provides.Now let’s apply this principle to cranks.The long cranks give more leverage for that initial turn,helping you to get past the dead spot.Once you gain momentum however,the shorter cranks would require less rotational effort due to the shorter rotations. But it’s that initial few turns that Archer is concerned about. What do you think?

The pedals move in a circle. Are you moving your feet in a circle, or do you simply step down on the pedal?

When your pedal is at the bottom, you should be pulling that foot back, since that’s the direction the pedal should be going.

Yes. Always.

You don’t need leverage. You need smooth, fluid strokes of the pedal. This takes time to develop.

Don’t think about being strong. Think about being light, being tall, just dancing on the tops of the pedals, not mashing down on them…

This post is so me…new to unicycling…i am geting stuck on the first half pedal stroke as well…glad i am not the only one… help Mr Wizard… lol

Well Scotty, the help is already available in this thread.

Don’t push your feet all the way down.
Reduce the force as soon as you’re past horizontal.

I know: Easier said than done.
But it will develop over time.

Been there, done that