Tips on hopping

Hey everyone,

My uni-ing is comming along nicely. :smiley: I just wanted to ask some advice about hopping. Anyone know of some good advice, or good ways to learn how? Or, is it just practice?

Thanks a lot!

P.S. Bedfords rule!

I picked up hopping really quickly, most likely because I did a lot of hopping on mountain bikes before I started uni’ing. It really helps to have a nice pair of platform petals, they are a giant improvement, and they will usually be useable if you decide to build a new uni later as your skills improve. They range from 30 bucks to 150+. I think an easy way to learn how to hop is to get an object you can steady yourself on, get on the uni with petals parallel to the ground and straighten your legs. Hold on to the seat with one hand and just practice.

I made a bunch of video clips this weekend, I may post one where I hop up some stairs if I can figure it out.


It is pretty much just practice. One way to try it (the best in my opinion) is ride, slow down, stop. And when stopped just grab the seat with one hand, two, or none, one hand may be the best because of equal balance/grip. And just bounce. You can also try hopping directly after mounting, or by grabbing fence, getting your balance ready, and then bouncing.

Re: Tips on hopping


Congratulations on your progress! You may want to look back to the post
on Friday with the subject “Hopping”. There were tips and advice offered
in the replies.



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J a s o n N e u m a n n

jason AT unicycle DOT com

There are a couple of good exercises you can do but first lets briefly analyze what happens when you hop.

A hop is performed using almost the same action you would use to jump vertically off the ground when you are standing with one foot behind the other. Try doing this without a unicycle and observe how your body moves plus what it feels like. Notice how you bend you knees before taking off. It feels a little different from a normal jump because your feet are not together but one in front of the other.

The only difference is that when you hop on a unicycle the uni moves up with you because you either grab the seat or grip the seat between your thighs. Note it is much less painfull to grip with your hands! Gripping with your thighs can be useful if you ever want to jump rope though.

You may find it easier to put the seat down a little when learning to hop, especially if you ride with it set high (note most people ride with the seat way too low - for freestyle riding it should be just below belly button height). The reason a lower seat helps is it allows you to bend your knees a little more to get some extra spring. If you watch Dan heaton hopping up stuff you’ll notice he rides with his seat very low indeed to allow for more knee bending.

For a hop your feet should be level and you need to apply equal pressure with either foot when hopping so that:
a) you go straight up
b) the wheel doesn’t turn before you land

You will find when learning that it feels more natural to hop with the same foot always forward. Work with this foot forward until you get it then practice with the other one.

Now for a couple of exercises.

To begin with try holding onto your seat with one hand and a pole or fence with the other. Have your pedals level. Practice putting all your weight on the pedals and then sitting back down on the seat. Repeat a few times.

Now try putting all your weight on the pedals, bending your knees as far as you can without putting any weight on your seat and then standing back up. When first learning to hop you don’t need to bend your knees much but it is nice to know how far you can go down.

Next try hopping as described up near the top of this post, still holding the fence, rail or handy tree. After doing this for a while try going into a hop from riding:

Ride forwards slowly, holding on to the seat with one hand. Pause briefly when your pedals are level and try a hop. Franticly ride out of it to keep your balance. Repeat until you can manage a couple of hops in a row. Repeat until you can get 5 or 6 in a row. If feeling discouraged go back to holding on to a post for a bit.

After a little while you should be able to hop indefinately. Now try hopping higher, hopping forwards, left, right backwards etc to improve your control. Next try hopping over lines, up and down curbs, up steps and so on.

Happy hopping,

Don’t pull the c**p out of your seat handle. YOu can really screw up your wrists and watch the angle at which you hold the handle.

If you work too hard at yanking on the seat you can mess up your elbow and even shoulder. Try for a oneness with the uni and let your body move as one. arm, hips, knees,legs, together.

YOu’ll know it when you experience it.

Reminds me of when the Dalai Lama went into a Pizza restaurant. He looked at the list of toppings for a moment then said to the waiter, ‘Can you make me one with everything?’

Say no to the 2008 Beijing Olympics!

That is random… :astonished:

Say no to the 2008 Beijing Olympics!

Not very!

For a free China!

What are the characters say. I have been trying to learn chinese and I am pretty sure the that the left side says something Zhong Goa but what is the are the others. I fell as if I should know what one of the right ones are but I can’t think of it.

You should probably PM, this is the wrong forum for this anyway.

One of things that really helped me when I was learning to hop was jumping on an old pogo stick. It’s basically the same movement and balance for both of them. Just jump on the pogo stick for awhile, then hop on your uni and give it a go. I was able to go from like 5 or 6 to at least 20 or 30 at a whack after practicing on the pogo stick for awhile. Happy hopping

Say no to the 2008 Beijing Olympics!

“Love freedom,love China”.

Hey praxisist, This is a “free” forum, but there’s also being considerate. In other words, go over to the Just Conversation area and start a thread about screwing your country’s athletes in there. The Olympics is supposed to be a sporting event, not a political roundtable.

It’s easier than riding. If you’re just starting out all you have to do is keep one pedal from getting higher than the other, and bounce around like you’re on a stiff pogo stick.

BTW I realised a funny thing: to hop I sure keep the cranks horizontal … but not the pedals :thinking: I hop better with back pedal slightly inclined toward the “center” … a bad habit?

Thank-you. I have been following this thread and found that information very useful, you deserve a big fat smiley!:smiley:

Hmm. I wasn’t able to hop at all when I started. Maybe because I did not know that you can hop on a unicycle :roll_eyes:

I can hop around quite a bit by now, but I don’t get the height I need to jump onto something. I can barely hop onto the pavement, mainly because I can’t hop high and sidewards at the same time. When I try that, I loose balance and the cranks are no longer horizontal :frowning:

A question of practice? I think so. I’ll keep trying …

I finally expirienced a 3 foot high hop yesterday finally. i wasnt one with the uni before. Now i am.

Say no to the 2008 Beijing Olympics!

artful words?

Just Conversation please

Can you please not spam our forums with your sh*t.If you really want to talk about this stupid argument post the thread in Just Conversation.This has nothing to do with hopping and i hope you realise you are just annoying everyone on here. :angry: