Running giraffe mount, walk me through

At MUC mtg last night I hit approx 10 out of 13 “static hop up from the back” mounts on my Five Footer. (a personal best %)

I’ve watched “Ben’s 5’ Giraffe Running Mounts” video clips over and over. His mounts are very entertaining. Much more vibrant. They go so fast, I have a little trouble dissecting them into component parts.

I tried the mount a time or two last night and succeded in skidding the tire across the floor, but didn’t rise the body more than a foot off the ground.

Ben, or other’s with this skill, could you please talk me through.

Should I start on concrete and not linoleum? Seems like the tire would grab better, allowing my momentum to bring me up and over.

I think mostly I’m just too chicken to give it 100% thrust. It appears to require brass ones.
:frowning: :frowning:

good stats on the freemount!

i haven’t landed the running yet
i do have a couple of thoughts for u to chew on and hopefully for ben to comment on when he gets here

yeah, the tyre skids on smooth floors
it feels better on a rougher surface
watch that u dont rely too much on the tyre ‘biting’ as opposed to u jumping
walk the steps back from where u want to mount so u know the pedal is going to be in the perfect position
this also helps u determine how many steps u r going to take before u go fo it (i have walked clear across parking lots thinking ‘next time it comes around’!)
work out how and where u want to ‘carry’ the seat so that u can aquire your seat before jumping without getting yourself all confused
what worked best for me was to sort out the whole thing in my head and then, as u mentioned, just go for it
i got as far as being on the machine a couple of times
i never managed the three pedal revolutions and then a tendon injury locked the giraffe in the garage


i should be back on it in about two weeks time

have fun

Is this possible on a 6footer? or is it too far up to go?
Just wondering


Who else would’ve paid money to see that?

Not I; been there. I just made a 180 when I got halfway across the parking lot… :slight_smile:

Yes, it can be done on a 6 footer, or even higher. I have mastered it on the 6’ but don’t make it every time anymore, because I don’t do it much.

NOTE: Running mounts, especially on 6’ or higher unicycles, put a lot of stress on the frame. I bent my original Schwinn Giraffe seat post practicing running mounts. Fortunately the frame has been unscathed all these years.

The hardest part about the running mount is coordinating your foot with the pedal, while at the same time committing all that force to it. The amount of force depends on your height & weight vs. the height of the unicycle, and the higher any of those is, the more force it must be.

So I recommend people practice by getting the foot and the pedal comfortable with the meet-up before trying to go all the way up there. Do this on concrete or another grippy surface. Linoleum is kind of the opposite, and likely to end you up with lots of tire skid marks on the floor.

I worked out a timing mechanism, which I believe is mostly in my head, where I would count to three while watching my dominant pedal come around, and go for the jump on the third pass. This allowed me to coordinate my feet with the pedal rotation so I was able to make a good jump by the time I got to three.

Try not to make the unicycle do all the lifting. If you combine upward with forward momentum, it will be an easier lift. Then, like a kickup mount, you will tend to end up with your dominant pedal at the bottom. This is how I finish, in the dead spot and not all the way balanced yet. No problem, pull the other pedal back (or if necessary pedal backward a rotation or two) and there you are.

Safety equipment, including leg armor, couldn’t hurt during the learning process…

I eventually learned the running mount to a one-footed idle (other foot never touching the pedal). This was what put the tremendous strain on my frame and bent the seat post. You should be fine with regular running mounts and giraffes with good, rigid frames. I would only worry about lower-end giraffe frames, though most of todays, including the Savage, are probably fine. A-frame or not, the stress is mostly on the part above the pedal area (bottom bracket).

I wouldn’t have expected that the rolling mount might end in an iddle or roll back- but it shure would make it easyer considering it as a possiblity or option instead of fighting it. Remember this, I will.

I can’t wait to see you do this, Tom. Do be carefull on the turn out of the kitchen.


wow, I have been looking for a connection to one of my other favorite pastimes, pole vaulting. I suppose I am going to have to get myself a giraffe. What is really funny is that some of the advice you people gave about learning to do this could have also been used to help some one learn how to pole vault. Things like measuring out your run so you don’t have to think about hitting the peddals and visualizing it before you do it could, with a little tweeking, have been advice from my pole vaulting coach.


I had a brief spell of trying to do a rolling mount on the jugglesoc giraffe. Ignoring for the moment that I’ve never successfully freemounted a 5½ foot giraffe the normal way, it seemed a good thing to do at the time.

I stopped after almost managing it, to the point where I got on enough to pedal backwards, but not enough to get up properly.

I flew backwards across the room trying to get on it, but had to bail before I was launched out of the large window into the lake…

Phil, just me

<doh! the “delete post” button doesn’t work, and I evidently don’t have enough brain cells to bang together>

i had a lovely lil’ giraffe mounting experience this weekend and i thought i’d share
the juggling club and gus (gauteng unicyclist society) got to gether at our favourite park in johannesburg on sunday afternoon for a quiet kick-off get-together for the year
as i walked up toward the group, i saw our resident concert pianist/juggler/unicyclist extrodinaire trying out a giraffe
he was trying to mount by halfclimbing up a tree and half holding onto the top of his girlfriends head
(i said he was gifted, i didn’t say he wasn’t stupid)
just to rag him i called out and told him that he was cheating
he looked at me, lost his balance and UPD’d
nothing serious
so we get to the group, park all the assorted toys, walk around saying our hello’s and eventually get ready for some serious playing
i noticed that he gave up on the giraffe and that it was lying on the grass
i walked over, picked it up, freemounted and rode off

(to appreciate the irony of this, u have to realise that i haven’t tried the freemount for about 6 weeks and my last attempts irritated me so badly, i gave up without mounting it once)

it was nice to add to the legend…


Yep, SO annoying!

Sometimes you can do it. Some times the giraffe is against you. I swear down, my giraffe has a personality!

Does anyone know if there is a abriviatoin for ‘Giraffe Unicycle’, apart from the giraffe MUni ‘GiMUni’.


Yes, ‘Giraffe’. Not to be used in mixed company, just like all our other acronyms. Even ‘giraffe unicycle’ needs to be explained to some people… :slight_smile:

the swahili word for giraffe is so pretty, i was going to remember it but i forgot to
i’ll get back to u

i remembered
it’s ‘TWIGA’

If you get tired of explaining things like “TUni” and “MUni” I don’t think you’ll want to adopt TWIGA.

“Whatcha doin’, Tom”
“Just messing with my twiga?”
“TMI man, TMI”

For most conversations with civilians I use the term “5 foot tall unicycle”. They seem to understand what, if not why.

On Wed, 15 Jan 2003 05:13:33 -0600, GILD
<> wrote:

>the swahili word for giraffe is so pretty, i was going to remember it
>but i forgot to
>i’ll get back to u

I tried to find my Swahili dictionary (really I have one) but to no avail.
Gotten curious I went on the internet (that unsurpassed source of
information), and it told me ‘twiga’. Why do you think that is so pretty?

(I reposted above message on the forum because the newsgroup->forum gateway didn’t relay it.)

Klaas Bil
[no sig line for forum posts]

it’s a kewl sounding word
it’s also kinda kewl to be able to c so directly where the word comes from
it is very descriptive of their style of eating
if u’ve ever seen a raffie in the wild wrapping that loooong (TMI WARNING!) tongue around a twig at the top of the tree (where they get the juiciest lil’ leaves) and strip the twig of all the leaves, i suspect u might like the word ‘twiga’ just a lil’ bit more