Slipping while idling

I’ve run into a problem while trying to learn to idle. For a while I was having some success idling, working my way up to three and sometime four times back and forth. About six weeks ago, the tire of my unicycle would begin to slip when I tried to idle, especially while pedalling back. It was odd, because it seemed to happen all of a sudden. I was idling fine and then the technique I was using failed or something with my unicycle changed.

I’ve tried changing the tire and putting more pressure into it, but I have the same problems. When I change my technique to make my movements smoother and less jerky, I’m able to have a little success, but it’s quite a bit more difficult than I remember it being before I began to have this problem.

My instinct tells me that there’s a problem with the unicycle itself, because I can’t see how I changed my technique quite so rapidly to go from no slipping to slipping. Yet the fact that I’ve changed what seem to be likely causes of slippage might mean that there is something wrong with my technique. Does anyone have advice?

Idling creates wear spots on your tire below your bottom pedal.
Even more if you have a lot of twisting involved.

If this is your problem then rotate the rubber on your rim a quarter turn for some fresh tread.

Videos always help, because even with your description, I still have 0 clue what you might be doing wrong.

It’s hard to tell without a video but you may be “muscle” idling instead of “balance” idling. I find that many people (myself included) rush to learn idling and are doing it too soon. When I give people advice I tell them to first get down (1) pausing, (2) rolling back, and (3) super idling. Pausing is pausing a tiny bit with your pedals level (3 and 9 o’clock). Rolling back is after pausing bring your back foot down through the 6 o’clock position and then continuing forward pedaling. Super idling is a full rotation forwards then a full rotation backwards then repeating. See how this progression helps your idling and concentrate on balancing, putting full weight on the saddle.