I recently started teaching unicycling lessons (one of the things I love about unicycling, I can be an absolute terrible rider compared to most of you and still successfully and legitimately teach people to ride). Similar to what I did when I taught myself to ride, I hold my lessons on grass.
I have a couple reasons for this.
- It’s safer. If you take a tumble, as most people do when first learning, you won’t have to deal with any scratches or cuts.
- It’s mentally comforting. I find that people are far more hesitant to try something new on a unicycle, or even just push off from a wall, etc., if they’re on concrete. Free mounting in particular is a hard thing to make yourself do for the first time on concrete.
- Once you know how to ride on grass… you can ride on concrete. I loved this, I expected unicycling to be hard so I was never discouraged when it took a ton of hours to learn. But once I was decent on grass, I got a huge confidence boost because I could do it well on concrete already. It felt like I skipped a step.
- Free mounting is easier. Learning to free mount with that little bit of help from the grass being bumpy is a lot easier than on concrete, so you can get the basics down quicker.
I’ve heard a lot of people say, however, that learning on concrete is better. Do we have any of these people here on the forum? If so, care to tell me why you would think it’s better to learn on concrete? Or perhaps synthetic turf could provide a good mix of being soft for falls and firm for riding?
I’m just trying to figure out if my teaching method is flawed
Another discussion related to learning could include with a wall vs. without a wall if you want to weigh in on that (the latter would be my opinion, but I think that there’s already a thread on this?).