Learning Journal

I’ll be interested to hear how your relationship with the 36" develops…I have a love/hate thing going on with my 36…the 29er still gives me far more pleasure…

Have fun,

crank length

I have duel cranks, but have only used the 165 (137’s too). I may buy a hookworm to try. Currently have a bloody elbow. A gust of wind gave me a push on the 26 and 8 came off and couldn’t run it out. Oh well:( Going to the beach with my 24 Sat. will see how that goes :sunglasses:

Guess what i got =D its not a uni… but it will go along nicely with my uni…


(please note i am a nikon guy… but when it came to camcorders i liked this one most)

Wow, that’s a nice one! very impressed, congrats on that!

(on a unicycle-related note, I nailed my second successful freemount on my 36 today. I’ll get there eventually!)

It’s great to see all the folks still participating here, the new feats accomplished (go 57UR!) and the new wheels gotten.

Updating my story, I headed out early in the morning a week ago Saturday and took my uni to a city park parking lot. I put on my gear and practiced riding, supporting myself against the car, for maybe 15 or 20 minutes until forum member zakking showed up. He was trekking from Lexington to Raleigh and his route took him within a mile of that park. He wasn’t up for a ride but he did sell me his Nimbus 26" Muni, including a Duro Wildlife and an unused Maxxis Ardent. The Hookworm has already been ordered too. :slight_smile:

So that was mission accomplished. I now have a big step up to aspire toward, and as much as anything I can look at it and see for myself what you’re all talking about when you discuss this stuff. Man that’s a big wheel, and it’s just a 26’er. My imagination fails me at this point when it comes to what 29" and 36" wheels are like.

But as practice sessions go, Saturday was pretty much a bust; probably more harm done than good really. There’s a long list of possible excuses, from being in an unfamiliar location and out of my barely established routine, to not normally excelling at physical tasks that early in the day and being particularly sleep-deprived that morning, to being anxious about making the link-up with Zak and various other plans I had for the day. Whatever it was, I regressed a lot. On every attempt I bailed out as soon as I took my hand off my support, zero success.

My next time out was late Tuesday afternoon and I found that even back on my familiar patio, I was still shaky in the legs and unsteady for a while. It took maybe 30 minutes to feel like I’d gotten back to where I’d been on Thursday before my Saturday morning adventure. But I kept making progress from there and got to where I was free of the wall and felt like I was actually riding the thing. The sensation on my better tries was that my equilibrium system had finally kicked in and made the connection to this mode of locomotion, and I was sometimes finding myself making automatic corrections as I rode; kinda like hardware acceleration had been enabled, in computer terms. That was nice.

The third outing was on Friday and was maybe just a little better than Tuesday, a greater percentage of successful attempts even if I didn’t go much farther. I was consistently riding off the edge of the patio and sometimes successfully negotiating the transition to the lawn, before the ruts and tree roots and grass clumps bogged me down. I guess a 20x1.75" tire pumped to 60 psi to keep the rim off the bricks under my static weight isn’t ideal for unpaved stuff. But I was managing unsupported rides of maybe 20 feet at the best, and able to change my pace and occasionally make some more or less not uncontrolled changes of direction, so I’m feeling pretty good about that.

I think I’m going to need to find a new place to practice. I’ve basically outgrown my patio at this point, although practicing forward and backward pedalling along the wall with the handy window ledge still feels like productive practice. I wish I had a nice seafront footpath nearby with a lovely blue handrail at just the right height, like I’ve seen in someone’s photos here. I’m going to have to come up with something.

Hey LargeEddie, it’s so heartening to read other people having similar issues and equally similar revelations! I’ve (stupidly) started my own learning thread Finally got started… not realising this was a general thread for everyone learning but my experiences and progress seem very close to you.

Good luck and keep us posted.


Thanks UL! I’ve been reading your thread too, just haven’t had any words of wisdom to share there yet. :slight_smile: But you’re doing great and my hat’s off to you for posting a video of your progress. I haven’t had the nerve to try that yet.

I surmise from the earliest posts here that this topic actually started as NotSoYoungOne’s personal learning thread, but lots of other folks barged in on it and posted updates on their own experiences which NSYO graciously welcomed. I thought about starting my own topic instead of posting here, but I guess I must have lacked the confidence that I would get far enough for it justify a thread of its own. Still to be seen really…

I am one of those that have barged in on occasion. Thanks NSYO for starting this. It is a great resource for those learning as it is a one stop shop for new uni riders to get both ideas and support -even if NSYO didn’t mean for it to be. All those individual threads get lost and buried as the person stops posting and the info for a new learner who want to just lurk is lost.

You mean this one ?
I am very lucky to have this nearby.

Yes, exactly that one! (Even with the tadpole trike that’s been clone-tooled out. I’d totally ride that too. :))

And yes, I agree, you’re very lucky to have it nearby. I hope it’s still working out well for you.

The rail was very useful to get me started. It gave me confidence to hang on to it, then later just touch it occasionally. However, I got to the stage when it became a liability, because when I tried to let go of the rail and see how far I could ride, I found that I was subconsciously leaning toward the rail and then UPDing. After that I just used the rail to get moving, then push away from the rail completely. This allowed me to soon ride 200 feet on a couple of occasions.
On my 10th hour I tried free-mounting and managed two successful kick-back free-mounts by the end of the session.
I need to consolidate that now, and learn to turn.

Good luck with your own riding

The importance of this thread

One of the most important things about this thread is that it is a way of gauging the number of active learners to the sport of unicycling. In this way, we can get an idea of how the sport of Unicycling is growing. When I first started learning, I found my way to this forum and I suspect others will do so as well. I get the impression that it’s not really growing by leaps and bounds, but is more or less remaining static. Perhaps this is a good thing. None of us got into this because it was trendy. Still, it’s good to keep track of new unicyclists.

I don’t know how indicative it is. I read the entire thread before I got my learner. When I started learning, I didn’t feel that I had anything to add. So, at a minimum, you’d be missing my datapoint by using the thread as a metric. It is fairly safe to assume that I am not alone in that, and it is not safe to assume any particular percentage of participation or that it would remain constant over time. Your ultimate observation may be correct, but I don’t think the methodology is. Even if you could rigorously collect metrics from posts here, we are but a subset of unicyclists. I have a friend who is learning, and though I have pointed him to these forums (fora?), may not have actually read here, much less posted/commented.

FWIW, I started learning partway through December, had a month off due to illness (not unicycling-related), and am now riding multiple miles around my nontrivially hilly neighborhood and neighboring ones. Without the benefit of a tennis court or other such adequate practice space. You can learn on a bumpy, sloped driveway without a fence, rail, or wall, but it does steepen the learning curve.

As Jigywigy says…
I am one of those that have barged in on occasion. Thanks NSYO for starting this. It is a great resource for those learning as it is a one stop shop for new uni riders to get both ideas and support -even if NSYO didn’t mean for it to be. All those individual threads get lost and buried as the person stops posting and the info for a new learner who want to just lurk is lost.
:slight_smile: The support on here is just Great !

I’ve been riding for nearly 3 years now.:slight_smile: …Still learning.
A few weeks ago I mentioned that I might have another try on my 29’. It’s been unused for quite a while now. in fact the tyre was flat and it was covered in dust :frowning:
Anyways up, I’m off on my hols next week and I’m only gonna take one uni with me…and it’s gonna be my 29’’. I will have no choice then, I will have to make a go of it ;)…actually it’s the thought of the Haribo from jojoxie that is spurring me on Tee Hee.
I’m hoping to be riding along some quiet roads in the Scottish Highlands for two weeks, no muni. So the big apple tyre on it should be about right. I’m going to take 125/150 and 137/165 cranks and see how I get on…oooh hope I’m doing the right thing here…


not sure what the 29er problem is but try dropping your seat 15 to 20 mm. I find that makes it easier to mount, don’t have a problem with feeling ‘up high’ but if you do it should help that too.

Cheers and have fun with the haggis and whatever

Hey Alucard…The Starmix are ready and waiting :D…you can do it!!!
The 29er is not much taller than the 26x3" you already ride…I would stick with the length of crank on the 29" that you are most comfortable with on your 26".

Enjoy the Highlands…remember to pack your snowboard :wink:

The learning curve is daunting.

And get ready for an explosion of hipsters in your scene; I smell them coming.

mounting a 36’r

After several weeks of practice, I’m starting to get the hang of mounting the 36’r. I’m still not real consistent, but getting there.
My friend (who is currently learning to ride) made this video today at noon and posted it on Youtube.

Hi LanceB…that mount looks very proficient.

Very stylish! It must feel amazing to do that.

I notice that you seem to give the wheel a little bit of a roll forward. It looks it’s just enough for it to stop when you put your left foot on. What’s the name for this type of freemount?

(Is there a good name/diagram reference somewhere for different freemount methods? I haven’t found one.)