hi i would some advice on the spin, backspin, and frontspin for level 6? I am unsure exactly how to do them and how to learn them. Thanks! :slight_smile:

Spinning is different from a frontspin/backspin. Check out the videos on Leo Vandewoestijne’s site http://www.unicyclist.org

Go to ‘levels’ at the top, he has a video of all the skills (except one, I think).

As to how to do spins, I’m still trying to figure that out.

Frontspin/backspin is just a quick 180 and then you’re riding in the opposite direction. Practice doing it really slow, then once you get a feel for it try putting a rolling hop in instead of just pivoting.


is it still a front/backspin if you have a rolling hop in it? I thought that was just a hopspin…

I was thinking about that after I posted… on Leo’s site he doesn’t hop…

The USA levels define a backspin as:

“The goal is a continuous, linear flow of motion by the body while the wheel changes direction. Frontspins and backspins must be performed within two lines 30 cm apart (see picture). The proper path looks like a cusp.”

I can’t find anywhere that says you can’t hop… can anyone clarify this?


There is a good description of the levels skills here: Rules for USA skill levels. There is a good summary of the skill level skills here: USA skill levels along with some helpful tips for some of the skills.

The frontspin and backspin must be done without hopping. The wheel stays on the ground. Here’s the description of the backspin and frontspin.

Actual spins, where you ride in a tight circle, require that you maintain the spin for at least five complete rotations. The spins must be done within a 1 meter circle and around a fixed point. You must also maintain pedaling throughout the spin so no mini pirouettes.

There are some hints on spins here: spins. Maintaining a good spin for at least five rotations without wandering takes some practice. Any changes in wheel speed during the spin will tend to make the spin wander. Changes in wheel speed to correct balance will also cause the spin to wander. The trick is to maintain a very constant wheel speed throughout the spin along with minimal balance corrections.

I can spin to the right and left, but not very well. I’m still working on getting it smoothed out. But does anyone have any advice on learning the backward spin? I haven’t worked on it a lot, but I really should start practicing it more, since once I have that, the pirouette, and seat on side to the left I’ll be level eight.

also for a spin how many times do you have to go around? :slight_smile:

For the level testing you need to do 5 complete revolutions inside of a circle of 1 meter diameter around a fixed point (no wandering spins).

For standard skill routine you need to do at least three full revolutions.

Yes, I will add (as a Rules Committee guy) that you can’t do a hop in the middle of your frontspin/backspin/spin. In my judgement, that would make it a different trick, where the object in those three is to do a particular riding motion.

This used to be a problem on level 3 with the 10x10 cm obstacle. It used to just say “ride over,” though for years we allowed people to hop over. In this case the object was just to get to the other side of it. Fortunately the level text was eventually changed to say “ride or hop.”

Almost all of the answers that were given in the above posts were from information easily available on the USA and IUF web sites. Just search on “unicycle skill levels” to find tons of information. The USA levels provide far more detail.

When in doubt, you can also use the Standard Skill rules (see my links at bottom of post) for further definitions of the skills. These are the right ones with a very few exceptions.

Most people aren’t very smooth in their backward riding. Practice riding in circles first, so you’re ready to make the tight, smooth turns you’ll need for a spin. Get all the jerkiness out of your circles first. Practice both ways, and they’ll both be easier for you later on.

When you start the spins, use your shoulders to lead the rest of your body. If you twist your upper body in a certain direction, the rest of your body will tend to follow. So for a backward spin, turn your outside shoulder toward the rear and your inside shouler toward the front. You’ll have a hard time not turning then.

For example, if you want to go clockwise in your spinning motion, turn your right shoulder back.