*still* learning...

Re: still learning…

On Tue, 12 Nov 2002 21:30:08 -0600, daino149
<daino149.e1ewy@timelimit.unicyclist.com> wrote:

>I used to bike a lot, and
>I was very proficient at riding no handed. After about a month of
>unicycling and no biking I found that I was almost completely unable to
>ride a bike no handed. I think this may be because of the difference in
>steering and balance adjustments between a one wheeler and two. Has
>anyone else noticed this?

Good observation, Daino. Last weekend me and my daughter rode bikes to
get somewhere and I tried to ride no-handed briefly to pull my coat
zipper up. I couldn’t do it, much to my surprise. Maybe it was the
slow speed, or I have lost some of the no-handed ability through
unicycling, or…?

Klaas Bil

A pregnant goldfish is called a twit.

Re: still learning…

Neil,

Just excuses I think. :wink:

Cycling generally does not help because most cyclists do not put weight on
the saddle and find it very hard to put weight on the saddle and do not
realise that it is critical to riding to do so on a unicycle. Although that
said cyclists generally do have better balance than the average person in my
experience.

Roger

----- Original Message -----
From: “[neil]” <neil@chemicalbrothers.yorks.com>
Newsgroups: rec.sport.unicycling
To: <rsu@unicycling.org>
Sent: Tuesday, November 12, 2002 9:49 AM
Subject: still learning…

> Hi all,
>
> Well 2 months on and I still can’t ride… :slight_smile:
>
> I know it should take less than 20 hours to learn to ride properly, but
I
> do have some excuses:
>
> . when I’ve got home from work it’s too dark to practice outside, and room
> in the house to practice.
> . it’s often too wet on a weekend to practice (in sunny(!) Bradford, UK)
> . I still have a problem with frustration which I think is made worse by
> most of my learning done on my back lawn (which has a nice patch of dead
> grass from some idiot wheeling a unicycle back and forth across it loads
of
> times!)
>
> I have got upto a point where sometimes (say 1 in 25 attempts) I can go
> about 5 or 6 feet, sometimes a bit further before falling off, most
attempts
> I just get 1 or 2 pedal revolutions in (and go about 3 foot - the length
it
> takes me to fall off!)
>
> Does it suddenly “click” and you can then unicycle, or do you just
continue
> to improve slowly and unnoticably?
>
> I WILL try and get to the tennis courts this weekend… Previous advice
was
> right and it is a lot nicer/easier to practice on that surface.
>
> Do you think there is any chance of me learning by mid-December? Also,
does
> cycling to/from work each day hinder or improve my learning to unicycle?
>
> cheers
>
> Neil
>
>
>


> rec.sport.unicycling mailing list -
www.unicycling.org/mailman/listinfo/rsu
>
>

Re: still learning…

klaasbil_remove_the_spamkiller_@xs4all.nl writes:
>>I used to bike a lot, and
>>I was very proficient at riding no handed. After about a month of
>>unicycling and no biking I found that I was almost completely unable to
>>ride a bike no handed. I think this may be because of the difference in
>>steering and balance adjustments between a one wheeler and two. Has
>>anyone else noticed this?
>
>Good observation, Daino. Last weekend me and my daughter rode bikes to
>get somewhere and I tried to ride no-handed briefly to pull my coat
>zipper up. I couldn’t do it, much to my surprise. Maybe it was the
>slow speed, or I have lost some of the no-handed ability through
>unicycling, or…?
I’ve never been able to ride a bike handle-free without much fear. My
farthest ride akimbo was probably no more than 100 yards, terrified much
of the way. This was after months of bike riding during one of my
short-lived stints as a two-wheel’er.

David

Less than 20 hours??? WRONG! It takes what it takes.

Everybody wants to know what to expect in the beginning, but I think estimates just set you up for disappointment. Didn’t I read somewhere that it took Kris Holm three months, and I mean three very, very frustrating months, to learn to ride? He almost quit. But look at him now! (and for the record, just so there is ABSOLUTELY no confusion, I AM LYING ABOUT KRIS).

GILD once said (search the forum for “neural pathways” to find his post) –

"remember that u r busy building new neural pathways in your brain to be able to communicate the small corrections your body must make to maintain balance to your muscles.
this takes time "

(thanks Dave (GILD) – that insight really helped me have patience – by understanding the magnitude of the learning process)

You and I are literally re-wiring our brains so that we can ride something that is impossible to ride – a stick on a wheel.

You are getting it. You will get it. So will I. We’ve both come a long way. Now go outside and practice. That’s where I’m going.

uni57 (Dave)

I just learned a few weeks ago, … the things that made the most difference for me were:

  1. Make sure the seat is high enough, … after I raised my seat another inch I immediately felt more balanced.

  2. Make sure you are totally sitting on your seat, … no weight on your pedals. You use the pedals only to move the unicycle, not to hold your weight.

  3. Start with your pedals horizontal and push off from a support letting yourself and the unicycle tip forward a bit. After you start leaning forward a bit, pedal the unicycle to catch up. Then it is simply a matter of noticing whether you fell off forward or backward, … if you fell off forward, then you need to pedal harder. If you fell off backward then you need to push off more to start, or pedal a little less hard. If you fell off before a half revolution of your pedals, then you need to push off harder and commit to going faster. I found that I would typically fall off backward because I wasn’t letting myself tip forward enough before starting to pedal. I thought I was being rather clever when I decided I needed to fall off forwards just as much as I fell of backwards.

  4. Make sure that you are looking at the horizon, … you can’t balance while looking at the ground.

  5. I think it helps to have proper posture, … sit up straight and work those stomach muscles a bit! If you have a slightly tensed stomach and you are looking at the horizon, then you have more “biofeedback” and it is easier to develop the sense of balance. I started out with a relaxed stomach and poor posture and sitting up straight made quite a difference.

  6. My stomach muscles would get tired after 30 or 45 minutes so that’s how long I would practice for.

It sure is fun riding around on a unicycle, … everyone you meet has their face light up just a bit, and you can’t help but be cheerful while riding the silliest form of transportation invented.

Unfortunately I just blew my knee playing soccer, so I’m stuck reading this forum rather than trying to learn to idle and hop.

Good luck!

imo one of the important things to keep in mind is the realisation that everything u do now, all the frustrating practise sessions, all the moments u think that it is exactly as ‘impossible’ as u thought it was going to be, all these things are all building and helping u become a unicyclist
it is all but impossible to see that now
trust me on this one
think back to the last time u learnt something
that gray period of frustration is an excellent learning school and everytime u try the skill, u learn one more lil’ thing about how to do it or how not to do it
this is all beneficial and on the day when it ‘happens’, it will all be forgotten, all the frustration will be history
untill u start learning to ride backwards, or idle, or …:wink:

have fun
it’s comin’…