Going Straight

I am new to unicycling and have only been riding a month. I bought a torker 20 off craigslist and love riding it (cant wait to get a MUni 24).

skill level: I can mount it without a problem, I can turn around to the left and right. I really like riding on on mountain bike trails. Roots toss me often, but Im also able to go over them too.

My question is when Im riding on the road I feel like im fighting it from turning to the right all the time. I find my body is twisted to the right most of the time in order to keep it going straight. My right leg gets a little burn in it more than the left. Not sure why this is. Any ideas why this is? Is it my feet position or maybe to much tork with one leg?

Thanks for any ideas.

Sounds like road camber.

It’s pretty common to have problems keeping a line when you are a new rider. So the first tip would be to spend more time on it, and learn to relax as your ride.

That being said there are certainly some things that could contribute to the problem.

Road camber can be a big problem. Does the uni do this on flat un-cambered surfaces, like maybe a parking lot?

I had a seatpost once on an old Schwinn that was made poorly, and had the top plate tilted to a side. After I put a couple of washers on the low side the self turning “feature” of the uni was corrected. Of course this will only really matter if you have your seat high enough, and you’ve learned to relax to keep your weight in the saddle, and not on the legs

I’m sure there are more ideas out there, but those two are the only ones I can come up with immediately.

I should say again though, that it seems like most people eventually just relax, and smooth out their technique which fixes a lot of these sorts of problems.

It’s probably road camber (camber means slant). Try riding on the other side of the road and if you then want to turn the other way then it definitely is. The solution is, one practice more, two get a better tire for camber or three ride where there isn’t camber.

Thanks a lot for the input. I’m not sure if it happens on both sides of the road. I will hit a flat parking lot and see if that fixes it. Interesting situation with the crooked seat post. Seams like that would be a hard thing to figure out.

I went through a period where I was fighting this too as many others have. Crossing to the other side of the road so that it was cambered the other way often helped.

Another thing I noticed was that I could feel myself keeping more weight on the right pedal as it passed through the 6 o’clock position, which was making me tip over that way. Ideally there should be very little weight on either pedal there, nearly all of it on the saddle. But in the short term it tended to help thinking about keeping more weight on the left pedal, oddly enough, to balance things out.

Maybe worth a try anyway… Mostly I think it’ll take care of itself as you spend more time riding.

I’ve often had leaning/twisting problems as well, especially when I change my seat height(worse when I make it higher)
I find that if I stand up to pedal for a bit or ride/practice more it goes away.
Road camber also is a factor.

Had the same problem - even posted about it here, just as you did. Just ride. It’ll go away. I did nothing specific and rarely have the problem any more. Just ride. It sounds like trite advice, but it fixes a lot - so I have learned over the last 6 months.

I agree with ubernerd that it does seem to correct itself over time having gone through the same issues.
I do still have times on rides where I seem to have to twist by body to keep things going straight, even on flat-ish paths. I find consciously tilting the hips a bit to the left or right can help and I wonder if the cause of the problem is not sitting entirely centrally (or at least centrally balanced) on the seat. That could also result in a little more weight being applied to one of the pedals as LargeEddie has been conscious of.
Subtle changes in position can make a significant difference.
Good luck :smiley:


I made a thread about this sort of issue too. As they have here, many people suggested road camber to be the culprit, but I found I did the twist even on flat surfaces, and it was really starting to affect my riding, as I was constantly riding sideways… Some advice I picked up from that thread was, don’t JUST concentrate on riding places. My crazy twisting started mostly when I bought my 29er, which was my 2nd uni and felt a massive step-up from my 24", so I started grabbing my 24" for an hour or two every few days and instead of riding it around, I stayed on my street and practised ‘skills’ - Things like riding backwards, idling, figure-8’s… This allowed me to get far more comfortable when riding and seemed to help straighten me out on the 29er!

Sorry for the text wall… But yeah, the crazy twist (If it turns out NOT to be road camber) is just something that irons out as you ride more, get better and more comfortable at it, and generally get your body used to the idea of riding one wheel :smiley:

Another thing that helped me is, start grabbing onto the seat with both hands. I assume because you’re doing the MTB trails that you’re grabbing the seat with one hand fairly often… Try swapping hands, but give both hands equal time on the saddle, and when you’re riding a flat straight section, try holding on with both at the same time. You’ll be in a weird flea-jump crouch position and might look like you’re running to the bathroom, but learning to ride without using your arms to balance should teach you to ride straighter too! :smiley:

Well, after reading all the great replies to my question I discovered camber has something to do with my crookedness while riding. I do ride with a slight twist to the right when on flat ground also. I have tried moving around on the seat and focusing on pedal pressure in different areas of the stroke. Like many have said it will probably go away with practice BUT, I’m hoping it will magically go away with the Nimbus 26 I just ordered.
Boy that was a hard decision to make. 24 26, 24 26, 26 24…. And I ended on the 26. I hope that was the right decision. I read post about people on 24s feeling like they had to work pretty hard to cover ground. I can relate after peddling the 20 around.
The trails around here are not too hilly or technical so that’s why I settled on the 26.