Trying to learn again after three years (falling backwards too many times,
wife made me give it up), Is their any method that one can teach themselves
to master the one wheel wonder? I tried the buddy system but my friends get
so inpatient. does any body have any ideas? Thanks in advance
Trying to learn again after three years (falling backwards too many times,
lean forward more, weight on seat, look forward, dont be afraid to fall, and
most importantly, get outside and go for it!
Wear a helmet, elbow-pads etc… It will make you less affraid of falling. Maybe you could even practice falling off, in a controlled way.
Try riding next to a wall. You can use it to help keeping your sideways balance while you work on forward/backward balance.
This is what I did. I hope it will help you.
Keep trying, you will surprise your wife and the impatient friends
#1, weight goes on seat
#2, lean forward before you start pedaling(just like walking, first lean, then catch yourself with a footstep)–make an effort to always fall in the front of the unicycle, you will be able to catch yourself on your feet every time, and it will get you learning faster than falling in back of the uni
#3, give yourself enuf room–sure riding between 2 people shoulder to shoulder gets you on the thing, but in order to stay on, you need to twist a bit back and forth. you actually do this when you are walking too, you lean a bit forward and towards the opposite side, then catch with the opposite foot
#4? arms all the way out to the side, this helps with the twisting
people say to look forward, i look about 10-20 feet(3-7 meters) infront of me, so i know what terrain is coming. it doesnt matter how far forward you look, as long as you arnt staring at your feet going “wow, look at my feet go around and around and around and around!”
#5 learn freemount ASAP, then you can practice unicycling anywhere!
oh, and dont try to stay on the unicycle if you’re against a wall and using it all the way for support, its better to just get on again with a centered balance
The thing that helped me best when learning was to use a handrail. Fences are good, but the actual fence gets in the way. So, go to a local ballet class and use the handrail to practice riding along. Dodging the kids will help with your maneuverability. Also pointing your toes during 1 footed moves looks exquisite! Good luck!
Yes I used a handrail too and did strait and level in 4 hrs.
One thing not mentioned that helped me was to pick a point at eye level on
the opposite wall to look at and aim for it.
I sat on the uni holding onto a (parked) car, positioned my feet so they were equidistant from the ground, leaned forward, and let go. After falling on my nose a few times I tried pedalling like hell to get the wheel underneath me. This resulted in some spastic wiggling, but by the end of the day I calmed down and was able to ride smoothly. Straight into a wall.
Starting with the feet front and back instead of top and bottom was key for me. If you let go and your feet are top and bottom it’s harder to start pedalling smoothly.
Turning was for day 2.
Dylan Wallinger wrote:
> lean forward more, weight on seat, look forward, dont be afraid to fall, and
> most importantly, get outside and go for it!
Me and my kids ages 35, 11 and 5 learned to ride this summer. I have
been told by some that it takes between 10 and 15 hours to learn and
others that it takes between 15 and 20 hours. Either way it takes work
and determination- but you can do it!
My daughter was going 20ft after 4 days and about 4-5 hours in the
My son was riding after about 12+ hours in the saddle.
I started riding a bit after 9 hours in the saddle.
We used our back deck and hand rail as a starting point. Walls,
fences and the like work well also.
Try not to look down too much (I know you will…). Sit up straight
and look straight ahead, focusing in the distance helps.
Early on try to stay near the railing, wall, fence, etc. You don’t
want to get hurt in the beginning. Riding will come when it comes- just
spend a lot of time in the saddle and let your brain build it’s new
neuro-pathway balancing subroutines.
Make sure your seat is high enough, when the pedal is furthest away
you should have a slight bend in your knee.
Sit down and put ‘all’ your weight on the saddle. I know this sounds
simple and obvious but I found when learning that it took a lot of
effort. I also found that it really makes a huge difference in
establishing your balance.
After a few hours, you may wish to have a friend try spotting you by
holding your hand and walking with you.
After your able to balance and ride a bit with a spotter, try
launching in the abyss. Use a lamp post or some such thing and try
riding a few feet. You’ll probably start with 5-10 then 20, 50, 100, and
then… your off.
All the advice given above is good but I won’t repeat it.
However, I noticed your reference to falling off backwards too many times. Once is too many: falling off backwards is when you hurt yourself most. More to the point, it is a symptom of a fundamental problem with your approach to riding.
Try this: go into the yard and get a broom or other similar object and balance it on your finger, with the tip of the handle on your finger and the head of the broom at the top. It’s quite easy.
Now, walk the length of the yard.
The easy way is to let the broom start to fall in the desired direction, then to follow it with your finger. This is much easier than trying to keep the broom balanced at every moment along the way.
In practice, you will find that you can only ‘follow the falling broom’ for a few feet at a time, then you need to regain the balance momentarily before setting off again.
This is how you ride a unicycle… the contact point between the tyre and the ground is represented by the broom handle and your finger. The heavy head of the broom is you, the rider.
So, to set off from the wall, rail, fence or car, you need to let the uni start to fall in the right direction, then you pedal to keep up.
It’s a dynamic balance - a bit like an object in orbit, which keeps falling but never lands.
The alternative is to try to keep the uni balanced at all times, which leads to a jerky ride, and approximately a 50% chance of falling off the back rather than the front.
You will find that expert riders nearly always fall off the front.
Hope this helps. Good luck.
i only just started to uni about two months ago, so the learning process is still fresh in ma mind…
Well, all that info above is really good, but in my opinion, using a wall just makes it harder to learn because you always depend on the wall.
what i did was i proped the wheel on the curb (pedals at 3 and 9) with my right foot on the closest pedal , then i would lean forward and at the same time throw my left foot on the farthest pedal. then, i would just go like hell untill i fell.
in my opinoin, this got me right into the actual riding and therefor learnin faster.
Also, since there is another side of the road, i made it my goal to get to the other side. it took me about 5 hours to learn.
Thats all folks
when u feel a dismount comin’ on, (planned or otherwise ) keep your wieght on the lower pedal
putting weight on the top pedal will cause the uni to scoot out from under u and quite often falling backwards
practise standing with weight on lower pedal and just stepping off the machine
the confidence of being able to get off peacefully will stand u in good stead
try n maintain a straight line running from your ankles, thru your hips to your shoulders
posture is important and ties into mikefule’s broom example
avoid trying to maintain balance by bending in the middle
once that happens, u r normally out
have fun and enjoy riding past your wife and friends
here’s wishing u all the ’ i told u so’s ’ u can say without getting divorced!
Possibly a unique approach. Highly creative, and if it worked, then great. Might I suggest for our younger readers that this technique may be inappropriate for those living on busy roads…
Joking apart, the kerb could be replaced with a brick or substantial block of wood. What you are effectively doing is a backstop mount, which is a useful half way step to a full freemount, and a useful technique on difficult trails. A ‘portable kerb’ in the form of a brick might retain the advantages of your system, but with a reduced incidence of mortality.
On Wed, 21 Aug 2002 18:15:29 -0500, Mikefule
<All of the excellent advice snipped>
Mikefule, this was another example that made me admire your ability to
pinpoint and understand any riding problem and your talent to give
very clear and useful advice. No joking.