Practice time (Robert Helber) wrote:

> Rarely do I spend more than one hour at a time unicycling. Riding every
> day would be fine but after 45 minutes of continuous riding I get sloppy
> and loose focus. Is this common? I am curious how long other people
> ride. How much does an expert practice?

In my youthful days, I sometimes would practice three hours or more, but usually
it was closer to one or two or less. The brain and body reach a point of
burnout, especially if you practice the same moves over and over again. For me
today, even fifteen minutes practicing the same trick is a lot. Fortunately,
there are always other tricks to alternate with.

Like any other physical discipline, you will sometimes have good days, where you
can seemingly do anything you try, and barely become tired, and bad days where
you can’t seem to stay on the seat no matter what you do.

As your muscles get more and more tired, they seem to lose more and more of
their learning ability. Sometimes you can learn a trick faster by not practicing
it for several days, and coming back to it fresh. We are not machines.

The brain plays a part as well, and there are all kinds of psychological factors
at work. Sometimes your brain will inhibit you from learning. For example, a
jump mount is a simple move, but getting your body to do it requires a certain
amount of confidence and guts. Flinching at the last moment can have painful
results for boys or for girls. Sometimes, getting hurt while learning a trick
affects our perception of the difficulty of that trick, and it may then take us
longer to learn.

To sum up, a lot of short practice sessions are usually much more effective than
a small number of long ones.

Stay on Top! John Foss, the Uni-Cyclone