My son just passed over to boy scouts. I was wondering if there is anyone here who is involved in Boyscouts that can help me make unicycling a merit badge. Bicycling is so why not unicycling!
I got the Cycling merit badge when I was a scout. My cousin did one of his required rides on a unicycle. (I followed along on a bike as I didn’t have a uni yet.) You may be able to find a counselor who will allow your son to adapt the requirements to a unicycle. I wouldn’t count on a unicycle specific badge but if work at it you might be able to get the cycling badge updated to include a unicycle option.
I remember doing my 50 miler (on a bike) at 8 or 9 years old…what fun! For a youngster to do it on a uni would be the bomb. Instead of the bike, perhaps the badge could be modified with a unicycle on it making it a true uni badge. Even if you cannot convince the Scouts to change, your children are sure to have loads of fun. Good luck.
Just design and order your own badge, come up with a set of requirements (I’m sure people on here can help - the requirements for the bicycling badge would be useful for us to work from) and when he passes sew it on and wait for anybody to notice!
Great idea! I have a son in Webelos for another year. I think I am going to try petition for it here in the US. Using the international unicycle levels would probably work well as requirements. Perhaps level 5. Certainly not 10!
I think the hardest part will be convincing the officials that unicycling isn’t dangerous or is something just for clowns. I noticed the juggling also is not a merit badge. They may not consider unicycling serious enough for scouting.
One footed figure 8s, backwards circles and wheel walking? Wow! That goes way beyond the sort of skills required for the bicycling badge (in the UK). I’d think at most level 3 (which is where I am personally) if you’re doing that, or realistically actually level 2 or 1. As always with this debate, once you get beyond L2 you’re into freestyle skills and not every unicyclist learns those or wants to learn them - plenty of other things you can do with a uni without being able to ride freestyle.
Though we’re getting away from the fundamental point that it’s not going to happen officially - it’s just to much of a minority thing.
You are right. Way too tough. Perhaps level 2 and possibly other options after that. I should have peeked at other merit badge requirements before writing. They are easier than what I remember.
It is too much of a minority thing. However, it would be nice to have some official recognition. We have ~150 kids in my town riding. Many of them cub scouts and scouts. I would love to give the cubs in my den some sort of recognition - 3 out of 4 ride and the den chief, a tenderfoot scout, wants to learn.
Of course, our town is unusual.
Serching for someone High Up in the organization
There must be a unicyclist that is high up in the Boy Souts organization that can help get unicycling recognized as a merit badge.
I have heard that Merit badges come from scout petitions. Maybe everyone here who has a kid in the scouts can have thier kid ask for this to become a merit badge.
Still looking for someone here who can help get the ball rolling.
Jigywigy: I want to live in a unicycle town! I would have learned so much more so much quicker if there were other kids that unicycled around me.
I don’t know anyone high up, but I’d be willing to help. I’ll work on writing up a proposal or letter or something. Maybe we could organize a letter writing campaign. I’ll work on it this weekend and update this thread.
I think Bill Jenack, the founder of the Unicycling Society of America, also worked on a unicycling merit badge back in the early 1960s. Not sure if that went anywhere, but he also worked on one for skydiving. I can’t remember if it was ever official, but that would also be a pretty specialized badge!
Unicycling Merit Badge for Boy Scouts
I think we just have to find someone here in the forums who is high up in the Boy Scouts of America organization in order to push this issue. Level two or three along with unicycle maintenance should be more than enough knowledge to get a kid the merit Badge. If anyone can connect me with someone who can help I would appreciate it.
I thought we’d already pointed out that realistically it’s not going to happen. There are lots and lots of things which are more widespread than unicycling which don’t have their own badges - just get him to use unicycling to get one of the generic sports or hobby badges (as my son will be doing with his climbing or badminton, both much more mainstream sports than uni).
Potential is there
I know some of the requirements would be quite easy.
“Where are your brakes?”
Points to legs…
Also there is a climbing badge.
Unicorn, I know some people pretty high up, but it’s not gonna happen.
Not in cubs
Though looking through the UK Scouts badge list there is also “circus skills”
If I go over to England, I’ll try to earn that, I should be going over to Europe, so hopefully.
While it isn’t Boy Scouts, I did find this:
Unicycling - PathfindersOnline.org
The requirements to earn the badge:
Know the name and purpose of the various parts of a unicycle.
Define these basic unicycle terms:
a. free mount
3. Know what safety gear one should use while unicycling and why one should use it.
4. Name 5 different types of unicycles and explain what makes them unique.
5. How is unicycling thought to have been invented?
6. Repair a punctured unicycle tire
7. Be able to free mount, ride 50 meters/150 feet, turn right and left, and gracefully dismount, all without falling off.
I can do all of these…perhaps 53 is too old??? Their badge is pretty cool.
Did anyone have luck with the scouts?