urban descent wobbles

Having learned to uni this summer I am putting my new skills to use by
commuting part of the way to the school where I work now that the new school
year has commenced.

My city sidewalk route includes a fairly steep couple of blocks at both ends
of the ride. Though I don’t have any problems getting down under control I
do find that my wheel wobbles from side to side as I travel. I know I
should try to ‘lighten up’ on the pedals to reduce this but I’m as light as
I can go and still the wheel cranks back and forth.

any suggestions?


Try keeping your knees straight, cause if your bending your knees in or out to slow the rotation then that will make it wobble.
Hope it helps. dunno what else it could be, unless theres something wrong with your uni.


again, things that everyone else probably “just knows”, but took me a while to really nail down…

when you walk, your feet pass pretty much under your center of gravity… your footsteps go in a reasonably straight line, in other words. when you’re riding, the pedals are apart… usually close to shoulder width for your feet, but you don’t want to follow the same leg motion that would carry your feet through the line under your center of gravity.

your feet need to move each in their own plane, at that shoulder width apart, to keep the wheel from weaving side to side more than is absolutely necessary.

also, lighter on the pedals means heavy on the seat… in another of my “stating the obvious” posts, i commented that i got best results when i pictured myself sitting in a chair… all body weight on the seat, with only the weight of my legs on the pedals; and [worked for me] pedal from the hip, not the knee. same muscles used to do leg press, not leg extension.

i .didn’t., however, recieve any feedback on my other post, so if any of this doesn’t seem to work for you then feel free to ignore it, and tell me to take a flying leap :wink:

fear and trepidation,
John M

Re: urban descent wobbles

Good on ya Erin and welcome to the unicycle world.

There’s different things that will help keep that wheel straight. Some you’ve already begun to figure out…Lighten up on pedals, weight on seat, keep legs straight.

If it’s a matter of the uni twisting a lot when descending or climbing, it’s just going to take some time and concentration to improve your pedal stroke. One thing that helped me was from my years of bicycle racing. During that time I worked on developing a smooth pedal stroke. The idea was to try and maintain the same amount of pressure on the left and right pedal through all 360 degrees of the pedal stroke. Be careful not to “lighten up” on one side too much and put to much pressure on the other pedal at the same time.

Also, when I’m riding for speed over distance, climbing or descending I usually hold onto the front of my seat with one hand. Sometimes I’m just putting my body weight on that hand, sometimes I’m pulling back on the seat. This extra point of contact with the uni will help keep it straight and give you more power for climbing and descending hills.

Most of all, keep on riding! You’ll get better as you put the miles on and challenge yourself.