Swollen hand from hopping?

I was just practicing hopping on my 24" DX here in the warehouse on my break, really pushing myself… I actually hopped up onto a pallet. Didn’t stick it, but I got the tire up there before eating it. Pretty proud of myself. It was my first try, too.

Normally when I’m hopping my left hand starts to hurt because of how I grip the DX. I’ve assumed that eventually I’ll get used to it or just instinctively hold the grip a different way. The KH Pulse gloves don’t help with this at all. Today, though, my hand is swollen in a few spots. The underside of my knuckle on my ring finger and the first pad right above my knuckle are seriously swollen, I can’t make a fist because of the pressure.

Is this normal? I doubt it’s something I should worry about but I figure I should ask. I’m a skinny guy so I don’t have much padding in my hands. If it doesn’t fade away in an hour or two I am going to be one grumpy unicyclist.

Anyone got any recs on how to avoid hand pain? Should I just wrap my hand in bubble wrap before I practice? Anyone have a DX handle and have tips on how to hold it so I don’t screw up my hand like this?

Between this and chafing the heck (like bloody heck) out of my scrotum/taint/thighs on a 7 mile ride Saturday I am learning that doing much on a unicycle outside of just riding it forward is a painful experience!

Still love it, though. In 15 minutes of break time I hopped up on a pallet, rode backward for two full revolutions (SCARY!) and made my hand swell. Pretty cool.

yep, its happened to me before, just your body getting used to it.

my 2 middle fingers in my right hand (the one i use to hold the uni while hopping) have kinda gotten slightly fatter than the ones on my left hand!! (muscles, not fat)

my inner tights next to the balls used to hurt like hell the first few weeks i unicycled. now i dont feel a thing and the skin there has gotten kinda harder!!!

First thing, I always remove my rings before riding - I don’t want to rush home to cut them off if something goes wrong and my fingers swell. Besides, I wear two rings on the same finger and they’d pinch if I wore them while hopping.

I think a thicker glove should provide more protection that you’ll need while figuring out the technique required to hop without hurting your hands.

I love my full finger Hillbilly’s for that…

Sounds normal to me. It’s alot of stress that your body isn’t used to.

When I first started hopping I had bit problems with my middle finger and ring finger. I eased up a bit and a few months later it all cleared up. Just take it easier and make sure that when you hop you aren’t forcing the unicycle up with your hands rather, Jump up and gently bring the unicycle up with you. Hope that helps.

I could never get used to gripping those plastic handles, so I got a Reeder handle which allows me to wrap my whole hand around the handle. I’m not a trials expert so I don’t know if it will work for that, but I really love it for Muni. My hand never gets sore.

Scott Wallis also makes a cool handle; I’ve not seen it but everyone seems to rave about it.

I used my next 15 minute break to practice with the swollen hand, and the fact that my hand hurts A LOT is helping me learn to use less hand and more jump. I feel like if I practice anymore though I won’t be able to move my hand. Can’t even straighten out my ring finger now… Guess I better “take 'er easy, dude”!

Please god someone follow up that reference with the proper quote… :slight_smile:

Everyone gets it when they start hopping.Do something else for 1-2 days and then get back to it.Each time it heals it heals stronger, unfortunately with trials even wearing gloves youll have permanent calluses lol

yea i had a similar problem from gripping too much. but it was with my one index finger… could barely bend it after a day of hopping. u’ll eventually develop the muscle you need. just take some ibuprofen in the meantime. actually i think i did some perm. damage to my finger because i never stopped. that was many months ago, and sometimes my index finger will bother me…but oh well, lol. could be much worse.

Same problem here. My ring finger hurt quite a lot when I first learned to hop. I hoped around all the time and wasn’t used to it and that’s it. You are not used to it. Give it some time to heal and eventually it will go away.

Edit: I advise to jump off with your legs when hopping and DO NOT try do pull up your whole weight with your hand (that may sound strange but I had that problem). It won’t work and that’s too much stress for your fingers :wink:

I decided foolishly to keep practicing hopping today in the warehouse on my breaks when my hand is already a little swollen and turning purple.

Now my hand is twice as swollen and I can hardly move my ring finger. Guess I’ll just take it easy and practice idling and riding with my arms behind my back/crossed/etc. Thanks everyone for telling me I am not alone in my swollen handness. That’s all I really needed to hear. :slight_smile:


I dont know if I have the same problem as you guys but I’ve been riding for 4-5 years now and just because of yesterday’s Trials ride my fingers on my right hand(the one I use for hopping) hurts. It never done it before, I thought it might be because the CF base is pretty slim and it could hurt my fingers when hanging on it.
Do you have any idea what it could be?

I think that swollen hand might be caused by “something” else. Maybe you’d better get out more often and stop “practicing” so much.

My swollen hand issues have since gone away. I think I just automatically learned how to hold the seat better, or at least I don’t put so much pressure on the handle with my hand. I’m sure it’s just something you learn to avoid as time goes on.

I had a similar problem when I started learning to hop. Two of my fingers hurt really bad – my obsession to learn to hop resulted in tearing my tendons; they took a few months to heal. Both you may have a similar problem. There is not much you can do but let it heal and don’t use it.


It’s a little bit better now than yesterday and this morning. I think I’ll try to put something on my CF base to grip on it when doing sidehops SIF, maybe I’m just not used to do big sidehops yet. I learned Pre-hop not too long ago…

There are no muscles in your fingers. Either your developing calluses or you’ve done something to the ligament so that it has swollen a tad bit. The muscles that control your fingers are in your forearm. Make a fist and vary the finger pressure while watching your foerarm top and bottom…

Callus? Well they can be a good and bad thing… Protects the area if it’s a reptitive activity, BUT they can get in the way of normal motion, see it all the time with Rock climbers. I couldn’t make a full fist after my first 6 months climbing untill I filed them down a touch with an emry board.
Sorry, cant help with how to grip, just a hobby sports medicine guy.