Today the fun quotient took a (rolling) jump!

Today it all came together for me on rolling hops! What a blast! I’m not sure why today, since I’ve been working on these for a while. But maybe it had something to do with my first being out trying my new 26" MUni wheel (in my existing frame), struggling a little to get used to the size and longer cranks. So when I got back on the Onza afterwards to work on hopping, it seemed so light and bouncy that rolling hops suddenly just worked. Go figure. But I had the biggest smile I’m sure as I kept jumping onto and off of (low) stuff.

That’s about when the UPS truck screeched to a stop across the street and the driver shouted out “Hey that looks like fun. I just got one of those for my kid – how do I learn how to do it?” So we talked for a while and I gave him some tips and suggested he check out rsu. Maybe a future riding partner…

Anyway, I can’t wait to get back out there and play some more.

Sorry to bore those of you for whom rolling hops are second nature, but for me this is a breakthrough. Couldn’t resist sharing.


Keep the rubber side down.

Ahhhh, the feeling of new tricks :slight_smile:

Makes yer day, don’t it?

I also had a successful rolling hop a few days ago on my trials uni. One of my attempts just clicked and I found myself up in the air saying “hey, I’m much higer than I expected”. Everything came together just right and the uni just about jumped by itself. The forward motion turned into upwards motion all in one smooth move. It was just one jump out of many that clicked, but now I know it can be done and have an inkling of what it feels like. Maybe one of these days I’ll be able to do it again.

Stupid question alert!

Okay, so I’ve got this hopping bit (about) down now. I can be rolling along, slow down, hop, and get going again.

(Now for the stupid question)

Is that a rolling hop, or do I need to hop at speed without a slow down? And if so, starting with, say, right foot forward, do you land the same or land after having rotated the pedals to a left foot forward position?

Thanks in advance to the master(s) that respond to this query.

I’d hate to say I was doing a rolling hop only to find out I was inadvertently full of it.

Re: Stupid question alert!

I wouldn’t class myself as one of the “masters” you want to answer this, but I’ll give it a go…

A rolling hop I’d have thought can be done at any speed, as long as you’re not stopping, then thinking, then jumping. On take-off you stop the pedals turning, so it’s just like going straight into a normal jump from moving; the forward speed is converted to upwards speed when you jump. Because of this the pedals will be stationary, so you’ll land with them in the same position.

The difficulty I have with rolling hops is the run-up… I can do fairly decent rolling hops when I get a run-up of exactly the right length so the pedals are at the right place when I want to jump, but that doesn’t happen very often. Unless I want to keep rolling at it until I eventually get it right by chance, it requires remembering a point on the ground where the run-up should start so the pedals are right.

Does everyone else do this? Or does getting better mean you can hop further, so jump from further away if need be?


Re: Re: Stupid question alert!

You get much more height on your hops than I, Phil- so keep that in mind- but, no: while the cranks have to be (for me) in launch position at the right moment, I jump based on strange feelings broadcast to my brain from my foot; sometimes, it suddenly feels right, and I get a message that says ‘GO GO GO’.

A safe and easy way to practice rolling hops for vaults is off a low curb: ride semi-paralell to the curb, and angle tword it more as you feel the sweet spot coming around. With parctice, you will start jumping off stuff without thinking about it- you’ll just ‘naturaly’ change your path to accomodate. Although I’m not, but have sugested before, being equally skilled with either foot in the lead will double your sweet spot (you’ll contstantly be rolling into a sweet spot every half rev).

Another way to develope timing is a short section of 2x4 layed out to vault- if you hit it, the board deflects instead of you (unlike vaulting up a curb). This is how I learned to roll-hop up curbs before being able to side-hop.


My first successfull rolling hops had me doing the Scoobie-doo leg spin in-air, landing on a spinning tyre! This takes an effort now. In Dan’s vault onto the car hood, his foot position didn’t change from take off to landing. May not meen much (what do I know?). :slight_smile:


Re: Re: Re: Stupid question alert!

Ah, that video. I fear the development of AI, because VirtualDub will probably hate me for going through it frame by frame far too often…


“scooby-doo leg spins”? In bmx we always called them ET’s.

Re: Stupid question alert!

My definition of a rolling hop is a forward jump where your forward pedaling motion gets converted into upwards jump height. It’s all one motion. You’re pedaling at regular speed, compress the body, compress the tire, and jump, all while still pedaling. The trick is managing to get that pedaling energy and forward momentum transferred into additional jump height. If you just pedal slowly up to a curb, time it so the pedals are horizontal right next to the curb, and then jump up, that is not a proper rolling hop because you’re basically jumping up like you would if you were standing still rather than getting additional jump height from the pedaling energy.

If you have the Universe video there are tonnes of rolling hops in the video. There is some video of a rolling hop here <> where Dan does a rolling hop to get up on a rail to grind. Also here <> (download the Schoolyard Unicycling video) there is an example of Karl and Christian doing a rolling hop up to a low loading dock.

for me, higher = launch point distance from obsticle. so for a curb I launch right next to the curb, but for a 2 footer I am almost 2 feet away at launch. of course I cant see it so this is approxamate.

Now, I was practicing rolling hops for a while a few days back when I had the idea I should try to grind a nearby bench. I went along, preparing to grind with my dominant foot (the one I’d been using for pedal grabs the entire night). Much to my avail, I rode straight past the bench as my body didn’t give me that “message that says ‘GO GO GO’”. I tried a rolling hop without the grind and to my surprise realised I hopped with my left (non-dominant) foot forward.

Those of you who grind, do you tend to naturally do so with the opposite foot than your favoured pedal-grabbing foot, or am I just out of the ordinary?


By the way, the grind “worked” in that I got the pedal on the edge of the bench, but was not at all compensating for the forward slide and had the uni shoot out from under me (identical to my first day or two of learning how to grind with a skateboard – you’d think I’d have remembered that lesson).

I just tried rolling hops today after being in spired by this and I can go so high and far (of course this is all relative to my former hopping height). I hopped up two steps at once which I can’t do with a side hop.

Re: Today the fun quotient took a (rolling) jump!

I pedal grab with my forward foot (left) which isn’t my dominant foot, and I
grind with the same foot.


yesterday i took the trials uni to practice for a change, and managed to do rolling hops onto the stage (about 15"high) which felt good,
i got some pictures too but my digital camera crashed, grrr.

i use my left foot back side to grab/grind

Dylan, evilewan, thanks for your replies.

It seems people do it whatever way is most comfortable, so I’m not too worried about my current arrangement. I guess the thing to do is to get comfortable at both grabs and grinds with either foot.