Tricks on a 24?

Is it any harder to do tricks on a 24 wheel than on a 20 wheel for a short person?

I’m planning on buying the Yuni Freestyle with Hookworm tire, but I’m having trouble deciding on a 20 or 24 wheel. And if I’m going to pay $300 I want to get exactly what I want. I’d only ride distance for exercise so I don’t care about speed or traveling anywhere. But if tricks on a 24 are the same difficulty as a 20, then I should probably just get a 24. Plus a 24 is only about 3in short of my inseam which seems too big for me.


How small is small?
I guess that if a 24" is nearly as big as the inside of your leg, it would be too big.

The same tricks can be done on a 24" as on a 20", but it may be a bit more difficult. I can do all of the tricks I can do on my 20 on my mates 24".

If your not bothered about speed, go for the 20"!!

Hope you have fun (and i know you will!!) on which ever one you get…


Now I’m not much of a trickster, I’ll grant you… but I do occasionally perform to the adoring public on my 20, and I can idle, idle/ride one footed, ride backwards and a few basics like that. I can do these skills (to a greater or lesser degree) on my 20, 24 and 28, and I’d say the difference between the 20 and 24 is significant.

Assuming it’s a genuine 20 inches and a genuine 24 inches (i.e. no exceptionally fat tyres!) then the 24 is 20% bigger than the 20; that’s a fifth bigger. That’s more significant than the difference between a 24 and a 28 (17%).

This means that the 24 has 20% more ‘kickback’ when you want to stop suddenly, or change direction. It means the turning circle is slightly wider. It means idling has a longer ‘period’ (compare to short and long pendulums (or, if pedantic, pendula)). You can ‘freestyle’ on a 20 with 110 cranks; that’s more difficult on a 24, and you might need 125s. That brings in other problems about timing for tricks. Even freemounting is a touch more difficult.

It sounds like you’re already unsure about the suitability of a 24. Go with what feels right for you. There are plenty of people who do all sorts of stuff on 24s, but if you are (like me) of the smaller stature, you will find a 20 much more suitable for the intended use that you have described.

And later, you can pick up a cheap 24 to hoon around on. ;0)

I concur. I’m 5’4" with a 28" - 29" inseam. I do a few tricks such as ride backwards, hop, (attempt) juggling while idling and have begun to have some success with non-dominant foot mounting and idling. All but the latter I can do with a 24" unicycling, but it’s way more difficult. When I actually want to enjoy doing those skills it is always with a 20" unicycle.

When I first got back into unicycling in 1999 I ordered a 20" Schwinn from a bike shop. A 24" one was sent in error and in my hurry to get back riding, I took it. I immediately regretted it, because I couldn’t do much but ride forwards with it and wasn’t patient enough to work with it. So I ended up ordering a 20" from them anyway.

As Mike said, go with your gut.

Raphael Lasar
Matawan, NJ

I seem to hold the opposing view point from the first two posters. I too am a bit on the short side 5’6". I learned on a 20 and about a year later I got my 24. Just before I got the 24, I knew how to free mount and ride and not much else. The day I got the 24, I could idle one it and ride backward a bit. Immediately after being able to idle and ride backward on the 24, I was able to carry it over to the 20. For most of the skills I now know ie. Riding backward, riding/idling 1 foot etc. Currently I’m learning wheel walking. I’m finding that even that is easier on my 24 then on my 20.

So, I think it is easier to learn tricks on a 24.


Some tricks are easier on a 24", most are easier on a 20". The 20" wheel is lighter and more responsive. For performing, it fits into a smaller space. In other words, you get 10 wheel turns on the 20" vs. 8 or so on the 24.

24" gives you more fluidity of movement, and is better for spinning or faster-rolling tricks. But a 20" is definitely better for any kind of unispins, stand-up skills, and stuff where the wheel moves back & forth or up & donw a lot.

If you’re looking for a good all-around unicycle, get a 24". If your main concern is tricks, get a 20".

Re: Tricks on a 24?

On Fri, 18 Apr 2003 08:50:15 -0500, Dorian
<> wrote:

>Is it any harder to do tricks on a 24 wheel than on a 20 wheel for a
>short person?

Most tricks, even simply learning to ride if one might call that a
trick, are easier on a 20" than on a 24". I was struggling to learn
idling on my 24". Then I borrowed a 20" and it was much easier. After
I learned on the 20" I could relatively easily transfer the skill to
the 24". But it is still easier on the smaller wheel.

Klaas Bil - Newsgroup Addict

“I’m not tense, just terribly, terribly alert.”