Middle age guy checking in

Hi. I recently had to give up playing ice hockey because of constant minor injuries. This kind of broke my soul but I’m almost ever it. I also had a whole year to learn to do a back-flip due to an poorly thought-out drunken bet. A friend baited me into. That cost me a $400 bottle of whiskey. Anyway, I’m still young at heart and need more fun things so here I am. I’m on day-3 (maybe 1 hour total) and can make it 20-30 feet thanks to youtube tutorials. There is observable progression so I can see the end goal for motivation.

Congrats on getting this far! It sounds like you are nearing the breakthrough point and will soon be riding much longer distances and learning to turn.

When you are ready to learn to freemount check this thread: How long did it take you to learn to freemount?

That’s quick progress! :slight_smile:
I will also suggest joining the “Unicycle chat” group on Facebook and the “Strictly 40+ unicyclists” group on Facebook (if you are over 40!)

  1. I’ll check out those groups. Thanks.

I will suggest deleting your Facebook account.


Disclaimer: My support for Maestro8’s suggestion is not based on experience, as I have never had a Facebook account. I just think FB and its government are creepy.

Welcome, MichaelM! You are learning fast for a middle-aged guy. I’m sure your years of hockey have a lot to do with that.

I just wanted to toss in my 2 cents about Facebook. I use it sparingly. I don’t give out “likes” randomly; because I know they are closely tracked and parsed. I see all the unicyclists out there, and they have discussions but there is no good organization to all the information being shared. :frowning:

Not for the end user.

The more sparingly you interact the more powerful the interpretation of what you actually do interact with becomes.

The more you interact the less important any single interaction becomes.

I don’t care about privacy on the internet. I assume absolutely everything I do is traceable and attributable. If you take care to guard your privacy you will ultimately be disappointed.

Here’s an interesting article describing how we got to this point: The Internet’s Original Sin

Yeah, but there’s less overall data; less for them to do anything with. They’re still going to show me ads for the LED can lights I was searching a month ago, but I work to train my mind to treat all ads as null areas that want to distract me from the topic I’m there for.

Absolutely. Why do you think the Solitaire game that comes with your (Samsung/Verizon) cellphone is over 100MB? It doesn’t need all that to push cards around. Whatever else it’s doing is probably related to tracking every swipe and tap you ever do. The upside is that more of these apps are now uninstallable, at least on the Samsung Verizon phones. And what you can’t remove, you can usually disable.

That’s a good article. The sad thing about it is that it’s about to be five years old! But it’s all still true.


I can ride now. Of course an extremely wobbley version of riding but I can stay up most of the time. I started about the same time I created this thread so around 2 weeks.

I think a couple things really helped. 1) A youtube video where they said to being moving forward and not try to idle or go too slow. 2) I never tried to go along a fence or railing. I would just learn forward a little, let go and shoot out into the open.

I’ve started the process of learning to free mount. This seems like it actually might be harder than riding. hahaha. I’ve go both feet on a few times but that’s it.

Oh and I have pretty nasty dyslexia which commonly causes me to replace correctly spelled words with different correctly spelled words. Trust me, I’m trying. I’d edit my post to correct but it does seem that I can, or maybe just can’t yet.

^^^ See this post has mistakes that changes the context and I can’t correct. Sorry but this is pretty annoying.

My first unicycle is supposed to arrive in the mail tomorrow (and I’m also a newly middle-aged guy lol). Hopefully in two weeks I can do about the same as you! I like the idea of just trying to go, instead of hanging on to the wall.

Congratulations! You’ve done really well in a very short time. And in regards to dyslexia, I really couldn’t see any issues with your writing, I think you write just as well as most people. :slight_smile:

Yes. Going slow is an advanced skill. Clinging to a fence inhibits learning. Learning is much less about balance than keeping the wheel under you.

Sounds like you need to get your weight in front of the wheel so you can ride away.

Have a look at unimyra’s video.

Don’t try too hard at free mounting yet as it can be frustrating. It will get easier as your general riding skills improve, particularly riding slow and still stand. Better to work on getting more control of the uni.

Focus next on steering by leaning the uni with your hips rather than twisting. At first you lean the uni in the direction you want to go while counter leaning your body to stay above the contact point. Later you will learn to lean your body into the turn.

And work at getting most of your weight on the seat.

Regarding pedaling fast, I suppose we don’t want the beginner falling backwards, so leaning forward then committing to pedaling quickly is safer. The rider is almost always going to fall off the front in that situation, landing on their feet. As a beginner, my 20-50 ft runs frequently ended with uncontrollable acceleration then dismount. Later on I figured out how to slow things down.

Regarding the fence/crutch: Don’t use it if you don’t have to. A unicyclist once told me how he learned by arranging a bunch of heavy wooden chairs into a tunnel of sorts. He started with the chairs close together, then slowly removed them, so they were more widely spaced, as he improved. If you’re smart, crutches can work. But mostly, I think they inhibit learning.

I agree that unicycling is about keeping the wheel below me, but I didn’t start feeling that way until after I’d picked up other skills, such as riding slowly, idling, backwards, etc. When you look at a beginner flailing their arms, unicycling looks a lot like the rider keeping himself on top of the unicycle.

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