How to fall off a Coker

Hi all,

I’m about to go from 150mm cranks to 125mm on my Coker in hopes of getting some more speed out of it. This will officially put me at a speed of just-faster-than-I-can-run, so I want to practice rolling out of a fall. I’ve never practiced falling, though, and I have no idea what would be a good way to roll, or what would be a good way to practice it. Any suggestions?

Thanks!

Andy

try to get your legs into running motion mid air, even though you will be going fast when you leave unexpectedly, your legs will be spinning in a walking fashion.

You can run out of a suprisingly fast UPD though, but if you need to roll, just try to roll forward into a sommersault, perhaps trying to get some diagonal movement in, as you will most likely not be flying of the Coker straight on.

Try aiming towards the softest place!

Wear armour.

Ride in control…you will soon be able to ride in control at very quick speeds.

The best way out of a crash is to remain vigilant, always scanning for an out. Keeping an eye on things further ahead than on a MUni, for example, is a very good practice. It’s nice to know where you are going to be able to turn into, if a car backs out in front of you, or something like that.

Practice? How about just riding progressively faster in a grassy feild and just jumping off, and see what happens.

I’ve never fallen off of a Coker, but I have something that should help:

At a track meet last year, someone was doing the hurdles and his foot got caught on one. He fell face first into the ground, but he’s also a gymnast so he tucked his head down and did what’s called a shoulder roll. It’s basically a somersault, on one shoulder, without using your hands. Then he instantly came out of it and kept running at full speed, and got second place.
It’s really easy to do spur of the moment, and it helps absorb impact a lot.

From my experience, I’d endorse this method versus the flying forward sommersault. Less risk to head and neck, easier on the back, and if you’re really flying, easier to transition to multiple rolls to absorb your speed. A front 'sault at high speed will tend to lead to a “back slide” which could hurt more on pavement.

$.02, TB

How to fall hard to explain in writing. If you know anyone who are into martial arts you could ask them to demonstrate.

I do have a few tips though:

Practice at low speeds rolling over either shoulder.
If you can’t roll out of a fall (e.g. if your clothes something gets caught on your uni) you have to slide out. When you do that take advantage of the protective gear. The Idea is that you land on your feet, then wristguards, then elbow- and knee pads and then slide.
Don’t keep your arms streight when you land or you’ll break something. Aim your hands in such a way that if your head hits the ground it will land on top of your hands.

Rolling is much better. You are less dependent on the pads staying in place and with practice you can simply ride, run, roll, get up and wave at the spectators in one fluid movement.

Oops, this front rolling method was what I was picturing when I called it a sommersault, sorry.

‘Hey Sofa! I tried you sommersault technique…’

I tuck my shoulder and roll onto my back. If you have a camelbak or a rucksack on, you can roll into that and on top of it, which is good for cushioning you.

Joe

:smiley: :smiley: :smiley:

Ok so heres the sernerio…

Your riding along, going progressivly faster on your Coker. You’ve practiced in grassy feilds for weeks perfecting your rolling technique and feel your ready for anything… your moms really mad cause of all the grass stains in your clothes, oops. Suddenly out of nowhere you feel a upd coming on, you can’t stop it. Looking for the softest landing your options are…

A. Asphalt
B. a Brier patch
C. an old matress that someones throwing out

What do you aim for?

Did I mention the matress is sitting over a 20 foot deep hole in the ground??

Re: How to fall off a Coker

quark soup wrote:
> Hi all,
>
> I’m about to go from 150mm cranks to 125mm on my Coker in hopes of
> getting some more speed out of it. This will officially put me at a
> speed of just-faster-than-I-can-run, so I want to practice rolling out
> of a fall. I’ve never practiced falling, though, and I have no idea
> what would be a good way to roll, or what would be a good way to
> practice it. Any suggestions?

Ooh, I know this one:

Aikido ukemi. Extend an arm, roll like an egg along the ulna, then upper arm,
then shoulder (ducking), then along the back to the opposite hip. Post your
same-side shin and roll smoothly to your feet.

Practice on a grassy field, a hundred reps a day for a while, until it’s
automatic. Both sides, please.

Re: How to fall off a Coker

KJ-52 wrote:
> Ok so here’s the scenario…
>
> Your riding along, going progressively faster on your Coker. You’ve
> practiced in grassy fields for weeks perfecting your rolling technique
> and feel your ready for anything… your moms really mad cause of
> all the grass stains in your clothes, oops. Suddenly out of nowhere
> you feel a upd coming on, you can’t stop it. Looking for the softest
> landing your options are…
>
> A. Asphalt
> B. a Brier patch
> C. an old mattress that someone’s throwing out
>
> What do you aim for?

> Did I mention the mattress is sitting over a 20 foot deep hole in the
> ground??

Aim at the person throwing out the mattress. :wink:

I’ve seen Brian Slater do this off a Coker on hard paved ground, and he just popped right back up to his feet. It was amazing to watch. Me - I do the feet / wristguard slide. I’d much rather be able to do the shoulder roll.

Re: Re: How to fall off a Coker

This is good advice. I used to be much, much better at falling because I was still learning new stuff and did it a lot more often. Now if I crash I’m much more likely to hurt myself.

The shoulder roll (or other variations) is the way to go. The more you practice doing them, the more prepared you will be the next time you need to do one. And the less likely you are to get hurt by the fall.

I should practice.

Re: Re: How to fall off a Coker

A few pictures might help:

http://www.aikidoonline.com/Features/TechAikidoChapter5part1.htm

Note that his initiating hand is outer-edge forward, his thumb pointing backwards, and his elbow and shoulder are bent. When you do it right it’s as if your arm is half a rim and you just roll.

The hard bit is not cracking your noggin on the ground as you roll past. A helmet would be very comfortable at that moment.

Ah…you need to study what the ‘parkour’ people do. :slight_smile: I’m absolutely amazed at what they can do. Here’s a link to an absolutely ridiculously brilliant movie - http://www.le-parkour.com/davidbelle.avi . :slight_smile:

Andrew

Yeah, that’s a shoulder roll when he jumps from the building, and lands on the building, then rolls out and keeps running.

Re: Re: Re: How to fall off a Coker

Yeah, the pictures were good. Only I was reading the rest of the page, and it said:

“Therefore one must understand these requirements while maintaining a serious attitude…”

…so I’m screwed from the get-go.

I was hoping to get it in two or three tries. Automatic would be good, though, since generally the only thing I have time to think conciously while suspended in mid-air with the Coker tumbling behind me is “Oh, crap.”

Thanks all for your suggestions! I’m going to hit the grassy field as soon as it stops raining.

Andy

Yeah, I was very lucky it worked and don’t know who was more amazed, U-Turn or me, but I think it was ME! :astonished:

I know a little about Aikido rolls (6 years Aikido, Shodan rank) and so does my son Owen (7 years, junior Shodan rank), and we’ve certainly fallen off our unicycles enough, although I’ve never UPD’d off a Coker “at speed”. I have found that if you can get one foot on the ground right away you can initiate a nice Aikido roll, if you don’t get the foot down it turns into a belly slide, like I used to do in Volleyball (indoor volleyball). I think the foot helps to generate the angular momentum that is needed for the roll. Since Cokers are mostly ridden on the road, and certainly that’s when they really get up to speed, UPDs may be predictable enough that you can train yourself to get a foot down to start a roll. It will be interesting to see what the skilled unicyclists do when they get up to 20 mph+ with 1.5 gearing.

All of this dialogue about planning your landing during a Coker UPD is good I suppose when you have warning that you are going to go down. On pavement I’ve done the knee gaurd/wrist gaurd slide and I can remember one fall in particular when I had the time to aim for the grass. I was able to make it with the left half of my body while the right half got the sidewalk.
Alot of the time you can land on your feet and the run out works well. There’s also the attempted run out that turns into a dive/slide when your feet just can’t catch up.
Then there’s the fall that gives no warning, etc., etc., etc… (ouch!)

  • Frank