Tips for improving balance while riding along.

Most mornings I take my KH24 to a local cycle path where it’s level and quiet and do four miles out and four miles back again. I’m a firm believer that you can’t go wrong on the journey to unicycling proficiency by spending plenty of hours on the saddle.

Recently, as the 8 miles has become more and more routine, I’ve been beating myself up about being lazy and not challenging myself more while riding along - you know, the same old thing, you get enough skills to be comfortable and then get stuck in the comfort zone - like all you veterans refusing to try SPDs.

Yesterday I read the thread about playing the ukulele while riding and someone said when you get to the point where you don’t need your arms for balance you can do what you want with them. And a while back I read about how someone said that riding with their hands behind their back greatly improved their balance. So this morning I tried not to use my arms. I clasped my hands together in front of me and rode the whole 8 miles.

I tried with both hands on the seat handle and both behind my back, but at this stage I need to be able to move my arms (hands clasped) a little more than holding the saddle or hands behind the back allows - I will work up to those positions.

The strange thing was that riding with my hands clasped seemed to relax me. My cadence was more even I didn’t experience so many sharp deviations from a relaxed balanced position and all in all it felt smoother. I really enjoyed my ride this morning.

Anyone else experience this, or have any more tips for improving while riding along in an otherwise unchallenging manner?

i’ve ridden while holding large rocks (more for an upper body workout than balance) and also trying to ride as slowly as possible can be fun and challenging as well

what i have also done and really enjoyed, is ride the ‘wrong’ unicycle on that path.

ride a beginner one with a skinny tire (i love doing this, especially when i ride with noobs)
ride a trials one
put cranks that are super short on it

Hands behind the back is excellent, also stillstands.

I think texting helped me(or forum posting)

+1 on texting.


Ride along sheer cliffs with your eyes closed! :wink:

Practice a rolling trick like riding backwards, 1 foot riding, WW, 1 ft WW, gliding, SIF, SIB, crank rolls, stand up WW, stand up gliding, coasting.

+1 on closing your dominant eye (usually the opposite of your dominant hand) or both eyes, but not the cliff:p

Find an open space where there’s nothing to run into or off of and ride w/ one or both closed, then when that’s easy do it while doing a trick.

like what tricks blind? i can ride blind

Hands behind the back is certainly the way to go. I tried it this morning and four miles later I’m very tired, scuffed and bruised. It’s like going back a few months when I was wobbling around all over the place and putting too much weight through my pedals. Excellent fun.

Ride further and faster on more challenging terrain.


Where I do most of my riding it is always windy. The wind comes straight off the sea and is normally 15-30mph and the road had quite a few tree roots pushing the tar up. The constant buffeting really makes me constantly work on my balance and fitness… when I ride in other places which arent exposed and smooth I am much faster and my balance is much better :slight_smile:

Dont for get work outs for the legs. I’ve been trying to stand and ride a few rotations every now and then. It’s helping.

Wow, Mikefule I’m extremely flattered.


I’m doing a lot of my training along lakes, and as soon as I started riding along the lakes regularly, my balance improved and I could do pretty much anything while riding. I think the wind helped me out a lot. Eventually I started going on the bike paths further from the water, and I noticed an increased level of fitness and ability. I’m now able to play my alto sax while riding, I can juggle 3 and 4 balls, not 5 only because I can’t do that standing up, I’ve done sudoku on bike paths that weren’t busy, etc. I wouldn’t suggest the latter, because frankly it’s dangerous to not necessarily yourself but others around you, and it’s generally stupid, but you get the point.

Sudoku dangerous? What about the danger to your teeth and the back of your throat should you faceplant playing an alto sax? Personally I wish all sax players a speedy death, but I wouldn’t wish self-impaling on you.

That is true, but you’re not going anywhere fast while playing the sax. That would be only for performance purposes. Playing the sax while riding is unlikely to harm another person, considering your head is always up. Sudoku, while being less physically dangerous to yourself, takes your attention away from your surroundings and your riding. You might rear end a slow biker!

Any trick where your feet don’t leave the pedals or move significantly, like WW would work.

I have seen someone do a crankflip and Joe Campbel jumped off a roof, both blindfolded.

no thanks