too old and fat to learn uni?

I am 52, weigh about 225lbs, and 5’11".
I have wanted to learn to ride a unicyle since I was a boy.
I’m not working at the present and can buy a torker (I think it is a cx). I would prefer something nicer, but with no income…
I have been doing some regular bike riding to try and get back in shape.
Any way, should I go for it?

You should definitely go for it; it’ll help you get in shape and brighten your life. The main talent required for learning is determination.

I really would suggest that you try to go up at least to the Torker LX, which has a much better rim and seat than the CX for only $20 more. The CX is more or less a throw-away uni that you’ll have to replace; the LX is good enough to last for years.

naah, anyone can learn to ride the unicycle!!
I agree with tholub, get a Torker LX, not CX. the CX is really, really cheap and not a very good unicycle, and the seat hurts to sit on. but the LX is very comfortable, and a decently strong unicycle too.

A year or two ago, I taught a 51 year old friend to ride a unicycle.

If you are overweight, take it steady. As you imprrove, two things will happen:

  1. The unicycling will become less physically demanding.
  2. You will lose a bit of weight anyway. I lost about 8% of my bodyweight in my first 6 months of serious riding.

Would the CX be ok just to learn on? No sense tearing up a nice one. That is the only one available and I’m not positive it is a CX. It is a Torker and costs 100.00. I am stretching it just to buy this one (if I do).
Also, it is a 20". I am planning on going for a 24" for road riding around the small town I live in. The one available I can get today. Anything else would have to be ordered at the bike store.
Can I get by with the CX for a year or so?
Thanks :slight_smile:

Right now, I’d recommend you just get a unicycle and get used to riding it. If you take to it, you will natturally find yourself testing the limits of what you can achieve. You may find yourself drawn towards distance riding; you may find rough ground and unmade tracks an irresistible temptation; or you may fall in love with the grace and precision of freestyle riding. When you know what floats your boat, you will probably do a few upgrades (pedals, tyre, cranks) and start to daydream about your ideal uni. By then, you will know what you want.

It’s no god buying the best top of the range 24 inch MUni, only to find you enjoy 30 mile jaunts in the forest; a custom Coker is fantastic, but not ideal if you are drawn towards trials or freestyle. Best isn’t necessarily most appropriate, and this is a very individual sport.

For now, just have fun. Later, follow your own demons.

Well, I called the bike store. He can get a 24" LX for about $120.00 and it will take about 5 days to get here.
Sound good?
I was hoping to stay under 100 (make my wife happier!), but it is that much better for 20 dollars???
Is a 24 any easier to learn on?
Thanks again everybody for your input!

UPDATE: too old and fat to learn uni?

ok, I just got off the phone with my bike dealer.
I ordered a 24" LX. He thought for my height/size the 24" would be better.
Any way… done deal but I haven’t told my wife yet :wink:

good choice i have a cx and its horrible!!! im gonna get an lx next though.
tell your wife the cx would have broke anyways and this one wont so in the long run it will be cheaper.

Go for it. I learned 2 years ago at age 50. I am the same height but I weigh 70 pound less.

I would STRONGLY recommend the 20 inch. I believe the success rate for learning on a 20 inch is much better than a 24 inch. I have seen people learn on both and the 20 inch is better for learning.

Get at least the LX, it will hold up better with your weight.

Good luck. Have fun.

Re: UPDATE: too old and fat to learn uni?


I don’t think it’s a big deal if he got a 24"…my friend learned on a 24", and he learned faster than I did.

I’m the same as james. It took me about a week on a 20 and my friend only a few days to learn on a 24.

Oh and if you drink any soda pop, stop. We have this family friend who drank a lot of soda. Then one day he decided to quit to help lose wieght. He took off 35 pounds very quickly.

It took me 2 days to learn, and I was on a 24 inch. everyone else I know took longer on 20s. I used a CX, and about 4 months later I tried a LX, and it was so much better for hopping. Now I use my DX and it works the best.

Thanks guys for all your help :slight_smile:
The 24 is ordered…problem is now waiting the extra week for it :wink:
As for the weight, it may not come off any time soon. Due to circumstances, I don’t leave the house much and don’t have opportunity to eat healthy.
Hopefully I can learn to ride the uni and have some fun on it and also on my Trek till things change.
Will let you all know when I get my uni home and start learning :slight_smile:

Good going, you will be amazed at the immediate weight loss.

An athletic person who takes up unicycling will even lose a fair bit of weight, learning is a cardiovascular workout like few others…if you want it to be. An overweight person will have noticeble better results…if you want to.

Think of the unicycle as the most fun way to get into incredible shape, and you will be amazed.

For your first few sessions, shoot for 30 mins. when you get used to it a bit, shoot for hour sessions.

Whatever you do, don’t lean on a wall. bend down, and pick up the uni as soon as you drop it and try an other free mount…you will see what I’m talking about!

Good luck, keep us posted.

you should keep a log of unicycle hours vs weightloss :slight_smile:

One of the best things I did after a car accident and a drawn out lawsuit resulting from the other drivers injuries, was learn to ride a uni. I was 37 at the time, and it made me concentrate on that and nothing else. I look forward to hearing your progress.

A couple months on the new Uni and you’ll have to change your name, fatty. You’ll look like Atlas in no time.

Hit it!


Brian and bugman, thanks for the advice/encouragement.
It should be here by next Friday, so hopefully I will have some good news then.
Till then, it is back to reading and watching video clips.
I told my 27 yr old son a couple of months ago that I was thinking on buying one. I can’t wait to tell him the good news :slight_smile:
He has a very nice off-road motorcycle, so maybe he will think about a uni :wink: He lives about 3000 miles from me so we won’t be riding together if he does.
Thanks again everybody. I am glad I found this site :slight_smile:

I will agree, unicycling is an incredibly fun way to get and stay in better shape.

I must be quite the old fogey here. My initial sessions were 10 to 15 minutes long because that is all my legs could take before they got very tired. After several weeks, my sessions got much longer.

It sounds like Brian MacKenzie is suggesting you learn by just jumping on the 'ol unicycle and giving it the old heave ho. To me, that sounds like a great way to really hurt yourself. I will be the first to admit that I was very cautious when I learned to ride. I don’t get a big kick out of tearing up hands, wrists, elbows, shoulders, teeth, knees, etc. I still ended up with some wild shin scars from the pedals hitting my legs.

I was very systematic in my approach to learning. It took me about 10 hours over 2 weeks but I did it without any serious injuries which is a major consideration for a 50-year-old.

Brian MacKenzie, I am curious as to how old you were when you learned by your method of just throwing yourself into it. I have seen 12-year-olds do this and some actually learned to ride.