I need info for my club proposal

Good afternoon. I am working on starting a unicycling club at my college. My club proposal has to end up pretty bulletproof. I am starting this thread to ask a few questions and to allow me to come back and ask other questions if I need them.

First off, anyone who has experience starting or running unicycle clubs. What do you find to be the best ways to attract people to trying it out?

Are there any intercollegiate competitions or conventions for any Unicycle-related sports?

What are the best ways to make a group of unicyclists last over time? I have to explain how to make the club sustainable.

Any further ideas on what organized unicycling adds to a community? I have plenty of ideas on this, but I’d love to hear any stories or comments from people who have done more with the unicycling community.

Finally, how do I connect a unicycling club at a small college in Western Pennsylvania to the greater unicycling community? This one is just for me.

Not much experience but this I can answer: through the IUF (https://unicycling.org/)

I started a unicycle club in Germany initially just for kids but now we have a fair number of regular adult members.

I think it depends a lot on who you already have and what/where you want to achieve. I think the best scenario is where you have a core group of riders who come regularly and then a way for new unicyclists to get started easily.

Ideally you would have 3-5 people who can already unicycle or for sure want to learn (if it’s only 2 then could still work). The next good thing is to have some extra unicycles where the seat height can be adjusted and people can try. In general, I find there are lots of people who are interested in trying to learn to ride. But the hurdle to buy a unicycle is a high hindrance.

Maybe you have an basic 20" with square taper cranks on which you learned to ride that you can bring?

There are 3 potential types:

  1. those who have never tried a unicycle
  2. someone who used to ride as a kid but quit for whatever reason (not knowing anyone is most common)
  3. someone who recently (probably alone) and would like to ride with others

On a college campus you’ll have the added negative but also potential that there’s a high flux of people (so most members will be gone in 2-3 years). But a constant influx of new students. So once you get it started then it could grow well.

Logistically you need a location and a probably weekly time: That could be an indoor gym or outdoors like on a basketball or tennis court if the weather allows.

As you say you need a proposal, I’m guessing you may want to submit as an official college club? and maybe then get listed somewhere and have a weekly training time. If you practice indoors, depending on the facility, you need some kind of policy concerning unicycles to protect the floor: generally no metal pedals allowed and clean shoes is enough, or if it’s a nice wooden floor like for volleyball then you might need to require non-marking tires (note: there are black tires that are non-marking) and clean gym shoes (skate shoes often have soles that leave black marks).

So are looking for a general unicycle club mostly to learn? As further options are for something special like uni hockey or uni basketball (but require a fair number of people who can ride). Or something like trail, where you could get more exposure by practicing outside (say getting approval to set up 8 wooden pallets in the courtyard). Unless you already have a few riders, you probably just want the general case getting people to learn.

In association with a college: Will it be just for college students or are others allowed to participate too?

Don’t know what your background is, but I would say that if you get a time slot and then at least one unicycle that people can try (buy a used 20" on Craig’s list) and then maybe make a QR code linked to info about your meeting and that there are loaner unis that someone can scan whenever you are riding the uni around campus and someone asks about unicycling.

Or maybe 2-3 people ride unicycles around campus and do some basic tricks and have an extra uni ready for someone to try?

You can do the thing where 1-2 people help someone trying for learn for the first time by supporting on the shoulders. Generally if there are many people around (say afternoon between classes) and someone is trying, then other people may also come up and want to take a go at it too.

I think you’ve already exchanged with Discrete_Integral about his experience at a college in Texas.

Germany is a little easier (I used to live in Texas/Northeast/Oregon) in that there is a pretty well-developed unicycle community in various disciplines: Freestyle community with many regular events (The Bavarian Freestyle championship was last weekend) as well as urban street/flat events at least twice a year in Germany (I went to EUC in February in Cologne) and trial events also 2-4 times a year plus some track and road events (I think the German unicycle road event was also last weekend). And Muni events about one per country/year (going to Switzerland next weekend, Italy the weekend after and German nationals mid June and France in the fall).

I’ve never ridden with any of them but I remember seeing a fair number of posts from muni riders in the Philadelphia area (I’ve ridden the Wissahikon trails a few times visiting). I think there is or used to be a muni club there.