This is a rare activity…and there had be to be a moment that hooked you into it too. Me? My parents saw a unicycle at a garage sale for $5 and though it would be a good way to keep my brother and I out of mischief during our summer break. Next thing you know, they had to find another garage sale so that we’d each have our own uni! It worked - albeit some skinned knees and few bruises, Troy and I stayed out of trouble and were riding unicycles like a couple of 4th and 5th grade circus clowns.
Now, 30 years later, I can uni further than I can foot it. So I’m curious. What hooked you?
I have been riding a BMX and MTB for years. I’d gradually switched to the BMX for everything as I just couldn’t be bothered with gears any more and found the MTB too ‘easy’. I guess I was already looking for a challenge.
I was looking for a way to raise money for the local Hospice after my mother died at XMas and noticed a Unicycle when I was browsing a bike shop online. I hit YouTube and saw Kris Holm, UniGeezer and others tearing round on one wheel and decided that THIS would be the way to raise £5,000 in sponsorship.
I had the daft idea that I’d just be good at it, like everything else I’ve ever picked up over the years, but after committing to doing this and buying the basic (bad choice) unicycle, there was no way I was giving up no matter how frustrating it got.
5 weeks later and I can ride and free-mount, now I just have to get better at it and start entering some distance events to convince people that the Hospice needs their spare change more than they do
Nothing beats that feeling I get when the cranks are almost spinning on their own and I relax into it - unfortunately, never lasts more than 200 yards at the moment chuckles but I’ll get there.
Oh, and apparently, YCNHTMU…
I have always wanted to ride a Unicycle since I was about 6 years old. Then my aunt purchased one that I learned to ride a few feet on. A few years later when I had a little money I purchased a crappy one off of ebay, and since then have been riding.
What got me hooked was a mix of a kris holm video and my uncle.
As a kid when i grew out of my b!kes my father would move the cranks up higher and weld in a longer seat post. We had one B!ke that was about 6 feet tall, one day while in the b!ke shop we saw a Uni and I was told that I was going to learn to ride which I did.
As a kid I used to do my paper-round on it, when I started work I used to ride to work on it. Then having moved out here about 20 years ago I kind of put it on the back burner until recently.
For the last few years I have been competing in the local MTB and road races and almost always come last. I have been watching various vids on youtube but kept thinking at my age I couldnt do the stuff I was seeing. Then I saw Unigeezer who started back at an older age than I am so figured if Terry can do it so can I. I only have a few hours mainly at the weekend spare to practice but I will get there.
There is also that great feeling when you are riding and people stop to take a second look at you!
Saw a friend at a paddlers’retreat pedaling around the camp and it just looked interesting. The next year saw him again with his girlfriend and I wanted to try it. Got home and bought a cheapie on Craigs list. After struggling at a tennis court for a couple weeks, I pushed off and went about ten feet. I was hooked. Bought a 24 muni then talked my husband into it. Now we are both hooked! Most of our friends and relatives think we’re nuts:D
I was given a classic Schwinn for X-mas 20 years ago, it had belonged to my niece. Her parents gave it away after she went to college and moved out. I regretted never learning to ride it. We recently learned that she wasn’t thrilled her folks gave it away, so we polished the chrome, bought a new tire and tube from UDC and returned it to her. She is married now with teenage girls of her own. When we ordered the tire from UDC, I ordered a 20 to learn on, then a 26, and two weeks ago, a 36. I only have about 30 hrs or so on a uni, but I’m hooked.
My sister and cousin. Mainly my older cousin was into it and that got my sister into it. She learned to ride but sort of stopped, but then met up with an exchange student and got back into it. After that I got one for Christmas and spent all day every day learning to ride. Some on and offs later I got back into it fully and got a 24" for my birthday and have been riding it heaps.
When I saw this vid of KH
Your hook was much more direct than it is for many of us. Lots of parents buy unicycles for their kids, but many never learn, or do learn, but don’t keep an interest.
I LOVE that video. Awsome riding, and I love that bizarre song! If you’ve never been to Vancouver’s North Shore trails, they are harder than they look in that video. And I know they look hard. It’s like Disneyland for technical MUni riders.
For me I think there were many hooks. One or two hooks might have you committed for a few months or years, but they don’t necessarily pull you in for life. Here are the big milestones I remember:
Seeing unicycles in person; in my case it was the Detroit Thanksgiving Day Parade in 1967 (probably the St. Helens team). That put the idea into my head.
Much later, in 8th grade seeing a guy ride a 5' unicycle over a jump ramp in my school's talent show. I was sure he was going to die.
The first time I rode a Schwinn, which was around 1976. It was so much easier to ride than the POS I was trying to learn on.
Figuring out how to freemount giraffes in the fall of 1979; we figured it out on our own!
My first visit to the local unicycle club, Redford, Michigan, in March 1980.
My first Nationals, 1980 in Kokomo, Indiana. Winnind a 3rd place medal in the 1-mile race.
Passing and beating legend Floyd Crandall in the 1/2-mile race at our local Mini-Meet in the fall of 1980.
After #7, I was completely gone. The non-unicycling world wouldn't get me back for a very long time. Not that I stopped riding, but eventually I started thinking about and doing other stuff, occasionally, after a few years of nothing but unicycling.
I was already permanently hooked before MUni was invented.
…and this video also got me back into it after years of not riding consistently! Of course the coming of the 36er is a big reason I ride nearly every day now.
I also used to deliver the Rocky Mountain News newspaper on my unicycle! I would also make my rounds once a month collecting dues. I would get lots of tips!
What is this an acronym for?
You Can Never Have Too Many Unicycles
the sad thing its true! i am looking at getting my 8th