Unicycle football

Since this is my first post, I’ll start off by introducing myself. My name is Mitch, and I used to unicycle when I was a kid. I started trying to do it when I was about 10 or so, and over a few years, Starting and stopping(I would put it away for months), I learned to ride pretty well(never could ride backwards or idle though). I stopped when I was in high school, and sold my unicycles in my early 20’s. I really regret this now. I had the 24" Schwinn and the Schwinn Giraffe you can see in my avatar. I would love to have those now.

Well a few weeks ago, I started seeing this group of people on unicycles in the parking lot behind a local coffeehouse. I finally stopped last weekend and asked what they were doing, and found out there is a unicycle football league here in San Marcos. They get unicycles at cost from an Austin Bike shop, I guess kind of a sponsorship deal. Well I went back a few days later and gave Them my money, and this past Friday, my new Torker LX came in. I’ve been riding again and I am determined to get better than I ever did as a kid. I haven’t joined a team yet, but I plan on it soon.

I’ve been reading a lot of posts on this site and watching a lot of your videos, and I am very impressed with everyone here and I really like the sense of community that this site has. I’m curious to see what you all think of this sport.

Before anyone says anything, I’ve already bought a helmet and knee and elbow pads. I’m also going to get some gloves and possibly some shin protection before I start playing with them. Some of this looks really painful, and I’m not as young as I once was.

Thanks for looking and thanks for the great site.


uniing at 10, cool. 1 day be4 my 11th birthday (April) I got my first unicycle and i was I loved it. for 6 months in intervals i stopped and it would just be laying around the house but now that i know about everything about unicyclig like diffrent stles of riding and diffrent unis, and i got a KH trials im hooked again and i reckon ill be uniing for the rest of my life! I hope to be as good as shaun J. And if you think that i just wont gt their i reckon I will! ill just have to fly overseaeas and enter comps and stuff.

You guys seem to stop all the time, is that because it is American Football, or is that something to do with the unicycle element of it?

A lot of people play unicycle hockey, which is much more flowing and fast paced. There are even leagues in a few countries. Quite a few people play basketball on unicycles too, but I’ve never heard of American Football on unicycles, that is wacky.


So wait, how are you playing football on a unicycle?
Unless it’s american football, having your feet on the pedals would raise some major issues.

I guess I should watch the video.

You guys certainly need practice;)(might stop the stopping that i stopped to read when i saw the guy who posted above me stopped to post, maybe add a little fluidity)

Yea, a great idea though… I’ve never heard of it and it’s unicycle related:D

If it was English football, you could ride one footed! (although it’s very hard to kick a ball and ride one footed, I admit).

From what someone said above, it is american football.

i know, i’ve tried:p (edit: it’s easier to do idling one footed than riding)

Yet it’s even harder to keep control of the ball while even the shabbiest of defense comes at you
( a light pole, for example )

Yeah, it probably is pretty wacky. And you are right, all the stopping and starting is just American football. But it’s a lot of fun. At least the practice was. I went to practice last night on my lunch break and spent 20 minutes or so riding around a parking lot with about 7 or 8 other guys on unicycles, passing the football around. That was FUN! I want to get there earlier in my lunch next time so I can spend more time(actually, next practice I’m off!!). They probably worked on plays later on, and I’m sure that was fun too, but the warm up session was awesome.

I spose if you could get some kind of attachment for a uni that’s like a plough, you could keep the ball in possession, then if you wanted to pass it you could stop and let it roll out so your other players could catch it in their… plough thing? That would work, no?

Yeah, most of these guys never unicycled before this so I think they’re doing pretty well. We have 2 teams now, with a third team(no name yet) practicing for their first game tomorrow against the Hot Dogs(Who beat the Unipsychos last Wednesday). I’ll probably be on the fourth expansion team.

freemounting on their first ride?

neat trick there

I prefer my real feet to a “plough thing”

But yes, that would work for the better riders

I call our new sport “ummmmmmm”
I need to go make some “ummmmmmm” equipment

My welder is out of town so it will involve tape
lots and lots of tape.

EDIT: What happens to the plough thing in case of UPD?
What happens when you need to lean your uni forward(such as in acceleration)?

honestly i’d get bored pretty quick just from all the stopping. I think (although I’ll need to check my manliness certificate back at the desk after saying this) I think a version of netball on unicycles is far more realistic and potentially enjoyable. I don’t think it’d be too hard to enforce the rules either… you just have to idle when you have the ball and can’t ever do a full rotation until you get rid of the ‘ball’ and also to stop some nubcake (what? oh wait that was me) from trying to exploit that rule and ‘idle’ all over the court in a zig-zag you would just enforce a 3 second rule. Or maybe even better and to cover both those angles enforce something like a 5 forward-backward rock rule after which you are fouled for not disposing of the ball.

Food for thought.

(you could still call it football, but just say it’s “Aussie Rules” football which if anyone was to be honest is basically Netball but with dudes who like to touch each others behinds)

Not before this video Chuck. :stuck_out_tongue: Before this phenomenon swept through San Marcos.

Seriously though, we probably have about 30 new unicycle riders in town since the league has started.

It’s Texas. They’re going to play American football, it’s what they do there.

(There’s an annual football game, Texas vs. The Nation, where the top high school prospects from Texas face off against top prospects from the rest of the country).

I think it looks like fun. It also looks a bit brutal; a lot more falling than either basketball or hockey. But that’s appropriate for football. If I find myself down that way I’ll definitely stop in to play.

english foot ball would be really hard and you would need alot more riding skill

Is it supposed to be full contact, touch, or catch-and-fall-off football? :slight_smile:

Anyway, playing any game on unicycles is a great way to increase your riding skills. What looks pretty rough in that video can turn into much longer plays as the riders’ skills increase. But I guess as American football the play will start and stop a lot.

If you wanted to play rest-of-the-world football you don’t need a plough like on a bulldozer. Just a little bar around your wheel that’s around the radius height of the ball. That’ll let you push it around and still pedal, lean, crash, etc.

Also don’t be averse to making up your own rules or variations to make the football game work better on the unicycles. We make a few changes for basketball and lots of changes for hockey.

Also your riders might consider shorter cranks if they specialize in football. Everybody seems to be moving pretty slow with those longer cranks, which you don’t need for flat-ground riding. You could also try 24" wheels, but bigger wheels also take up more space so you might have fun keeping the wheel size consistent. Also that one guy in the video really needs to lower his seat!

I’m expecting a lot more completed passes and longer plays as everyone gets better. I might try shorter cranks on mine. If it helps a lot, then I’m sure it would spread around the league. Is it a real pain to change them out? And how would it effect my efforts to learn to idle and ride backwards?

I actually find idling slightly easier on 125mm rather than longer cranks on a 24"; backwards is probably slightly easier with longer cranks. But it really doesn’t matter that much. Shorter cranks are definitely better for uni basketball and hockey, and I expect that’s true for football as well; more speed and smoother riding.

I’m the team captain for the unicychos. Due to the fact most everyone in the league has been riding about a month, it has been pretty much catch and fall off football. Officially it is supposed to be flag football since we play on pavement, but you are just as likely to get pushed off your unicycle as you are having your flag pulled. Last night was the first game for the Narwals (the third team) an one of the Narwals was on his back, on the ground, and reached up to grab the ankle of the rusher to tackle him as he rode by. Good stuff! The rules are still being adapted, and at some point we will have full contact games in the grass. Instead of the coin toss to decide initial possession we joust. The vid on you tube was only the second game played, and the play has gotten more intense with actual plays being run instead of the just get open and hope to catch the ball of the vid. If you are in Texas, start a team. We need road games. John, if you can describe the guy who has too high a seat, I’ll let him know that John Foss himself said to lower it. :stuck_out_tongue: As far as wheel size, there has been talk of limiting wheel size to 20" I rode my 24 with 127mm cranks last night (playing for the Narwals) and my speed was unmatched. A couple other guys have 24’s but much longer cranks. I have 102mm cranks coming for my 20. I’m going to try a few options n see what I like.