Should I attempt to ride over road bumps?

I can unicycle with relative ease on flat, uphill and downhill roads. But once I came upon a road bump and instinctively stopped, fearing that I would fall if I attempted to ride over it. Is there such a high risk or should I attempt riding over road bumps I encounter in the future?

Just ride it, i can ride over speed humps easily on my 20". :stuck_out_tongue:

Do or do not, there is no try.

Absolutely go for it man, just maybe not at full speed to start.

Yes, you should try to ride over road bumps. Kris Holm didn’t get where he is today by not riding over road bumps.

I’m sure he never rode over a speed bump in his life, and he still can’t do it:p

Just go for it! if you fell, you’ll probably fall on your feet because you wont go really fast with a 20"(exept if you try to go fast). If you do it, you’ll be proud of you :slight_smile:

I can see a full speed face plant coming on :smiley:

Riding over it at an oblique angle will make the bump more gradual and less intimidating. Try it slowly this way. You can also try riding up the bump this way and then down on the same side. Glancing blows which will allow you to gradually become more comfortable with getting all the way over.

I ride a 24". Does this change anything?

Very sensible advice! Thank you.

Yes, it makes it easier.
If you’re scared of falling then you probably are going to fall. It’s not hard, but you’ll probably have to practice it for a while until you’re confidant.

To paraphrase from a TV series,

“If you ride over road bumps, Sheridan, you will surely die.”

All the daredevils online are encouraging you to try it. I must argue the other side. You could fall. You could be embarrassed if someone you like sees you fall. The ensuing depression could lead to suicide and you would die. You could hit your head and die. You could scrape your calf on the pedal, get an infection and die. You could fall and sprain your finger. Later, while driving, your sprained finger might interfere with your control of the car and lead to an accident. While in Hospital, you could contract a Staph infection (flesh eating bacteria) and loose various bits of your anatomy. Depression from your disfigurement would lead you to throw yourself under a bus, and you would die.

It just is not worth the risk. Don’t ride over that road bump.


I (mistakenly) rode over a road bump within my couple weeks of riding, before I could even free mount.

Not being aware of what I was doing was key. Next time, I thought about it and fell off.

I am frequently knocked off by bumps that I did not see coming, even really small ones. The ones I see I can sometimes get over, but I tense up really hard as I approach, which is absolutely not helping me. I am working on just riding over them without tensing up, as I believe this will be the key to true riding skill.

(If I am wrong about that I hope stronger riders chime in quick to shed more light)

I must agree with Scott. Once, many years ago, a good friend of mine wanted to attempt a road bump. He could barely ride, and I warned him of the dangers. He disregarded me, and tried it anyway. He fell off and got an awful pedal bite that put huge slashes 3 inches deep in his shin. He then went to drive to the Emergency room, and from what I gathered from his autopsy he was driving on the highway when suddenly he started hallucinating from loss of blood. Out of nowhere he accelerated to nearly 120 mph. Within moments he had hit 14 cars, and those cars hit many others, causing mass catastrophe. He was responsible for the deaths of 139 people, 8 dogs, 5 cats, 3 goldfish and a pterodactyl. A law was then passed mandating that all road bumps be marked with signs explicitly stating, “No Unicyclist should ride over this road bump. Danger of Death.” I am not sure why these signs are missing from your road bump, but immediate action should be taken to have them installed. Do you want this to happen to you? Do not ride over road bumps. You have been warned.

You will mostly likely fall once or twice until you learn to adjust your balance as you hit the bump. So be ready for a forward fall but it will be just a normal forward fall where you will just land on your feet.

The riding over at an angle is good advice but takes its own adjustment of balance. I don’t think the skill is that hard that you need to do this step. Eventually you will want to be able to do it at any angle. I don’t think one way or the other is that much harder or easier. It really depends on the contour of the bump which none of us can see.

Either way just ride your normal speed and stay relaxed. If you know how to ride up hills your body already knows how to lean forward and that you have to pedal a little harder. It’s the same feeling but just but you only do it for a second. Then you ease off to ride down the backside.

You will be surprised at how easy it is after just a couple of attempts. You may even make it on the first try depending on how solid your basic riding is. I’d be very surprised if it took you more than 3 attempts. Stay relaxed, don’t look down at your wheel and think if it as riding up a very short hill.

I don’t see that anyone mentioned this yet, but the way I think about riding over any bump–speed, a rock, a log, etc.–is to shift my weight (i.e., mostly my hips) backwards right before the wheel hits the bump. Then the bump should cause your balance to shift a bit forward. The idea is to be falling back before just enough so that hitting the bump corrects your balance. After a while you can just blast over bumps and even catch some air off the other side.

I’ve been riding for all of 3 weeks, so I can speak with authority as a beginner. :slight_smile:

I attempted my first speed bump Monday, and went over with no problem. Granted, it was a fairly un-abrupt speed bump, if you know what I mean.

I think the key is to not think much about the speed bump, but to thing about what you’re going to do after the bump. Put your focus down the road, where you want to go. That way you’ll be prepared to deal with the bobble that follows the bump.

About halfway through reading that, I was almost expecting to get Bel-Aired, lol.

I think it’s easier to start by riding down a small curb, and then try the speed bump.

It is true, Sheridan died after riding over the road bumps, but he came back, and rode like a bada55 for another couple decades or so.

It will help if you raise your weight slightly out of the saddle.