rolling hop timing

So I can’t seem to figure this out. I would like to start jumping off some of the 3 stairs or even just curbs, but I can’t ever get my cranks to that spot when you jump in time. I can hop and drop off objects fine. But how do you figure out when to hop? Oh, and I’m talking about straightl-line. I can rolling hop onto and off stuff just fine if I’m riding parallel to it.

try stoping and pning it out by just pushing it to the spot and then back so you can start :slight_smile:

When your doing a rolling hop forwards (straight line) then you need to remember that you have to stop for a split second when your cranks are at the right spot so your leaning forwards…that way you can bring the unicycle forwards furthure. About the cranks, after a while you should just be able to feel where your cranks are and when to jump without thinking about it. Keep practicing, it’ll come soon.

You can do it at a slight angle, so you can time it right to line it up, instead of going straight on and hoping for the best.
Or you can ride up to it, hop until it’s where you want it to be, then ride backwards away from it. Then it’s allll lined up.

Yes,(responding to want Mr. James said) or you can simply just put the wheel how you like it then just roll it on the ground to where your gonna start, then just go and do your jump, and this will assure nicee aligned jumping.


I prefer the riding backwards tech, because you can hop around the spot to ensure it feels right, and riding backwards to prepare looks better for people watching.

Yeah, that’s one of the main reasons I do it. If you go line it up right, then roll backwards and do it, they can tell that you’re setting it up just right.
But if you ride up to it, then ride back, it looks almost like you’re just sizing up what you’re about to do.

Yes that is what i do but if you do not retain the knowledge for riding backwards this is a healthy alternative.


The only problem with lining up by rolling your wheel on the ground is if you ride with a low tire pressure, your weight compressing the tire can effect the distance. If you can’t ride backwards, you could also face away from the obstacle that you want to jump on to and ride away backwards. When you get to a good starting point, hop around to face the obstacle and you should be lined up.

In my experience this doesn’t always work. I think that it has something to do with tyre pressure. That is, the circumference of your wheel will be different with your body weight on it compared to unweighted - especially if you’re running your tyre at a low pressure.

EDIT: Darn, Uni412 bet me to it!


Sorry, I didn’t really explain myself well. I meant you could ride forwards away from the obstacle to line up.

I’ve never had a problem with the tire pressure but if you dont ride in a strait line back wards then you might not be lined up anymore.

I think that the amount that tire pressure can change the circuymfrance of the wheel is negligable, unless you have huge rollup distances. I think that the inevitable turns you make while rolling back have a greater effect on the distance/rotation ratio. I do notice that hand rolling the wheel doesn’t work as well, though.

When I (very rarely) do rolling hops the amount of wobbling when riding backwards is about the same as when rolling forwards, so riding up to the jumping spot and then riding backwards for the run-up has always worked best for me.

I know this isn’t what you were asking about Sigurd, but you may find the frames of Dan Heaton’s rolling hop to 7 pallets helpful -


That pic helped me alot, plus I watched how he jumps in the videos in slow motion, Using that tech I jumped up 4 pallets, but once on top I sliped in a crack and hurt both wrists.

Perhaps I didn’t explain what I meant very well. My point was that when you apply your body weight to your unicycle (as in riding it) the tyre will naturally compress somewhat. Depending on how much you weigh and what your tyre pressure is the amount of tyre sag will vary. Even though the percentage change in the circumference will be pretty small as you say, over a number of wheel rotations it will be enough to put your rolling hop out of alignment. This is why hand rolling the wheel back doesn’t work as well.

For convenience I omitted the body weight factor in my earlier post, assuming that most riders will not gain or lose any mass when doing a rolling hop. Though its effect can readily be seen by having a substantially heavier rider borrow a lighter rider’s unicycle and seeing the tyre sag.


Wow, thanks for all the help guys. Yes, I have seen that pic of Dan doing the 7 pallets. I guess I’m just going to have to start small. Or just keep riding up parallel for a while.

I completely understood what you meant, and my statement still stands. At best you can change the circumfrence of a 19" tire by ~12" (2" deep times 2 times pi), and then roll back. So a 4 rev rollback can, at best, change you rollup distance by 48". But noone ever bottoms out their rim rolling backwards. This means that we can assume they don’t change the rollout of their wheel by more than about 6" per rev. 4x6=24, so there’s a chance for a 2’ discrepancy. But then you factor how much a rider can change their distance by truing while riding backwards, adn this inaccuracy is eliminated. Also, other than Dan Heaton, what rider rides backwards with their tire half bottomed out? Also, from experience I’ve noticed when I hand roll the wheel back, I find myself too close, not too far from the object. Go figure…

Depending on what I rolling hop I do the rolling backwards or the hand rolling.

To correct the weight difference between riding and not riding I just roll it back in a zig zag pattern and this usually assures that I will be on target.

Also when you rolling hop up something I suggest hop from the distance away that the object is tall.
Example: your object is 3 feet high, roll and hop when you are 3 feet away from said object.

I also think this tech. is only good when the object is 2 feet or higher.