What makes a beginner a beginner?

I’ve been riding my unicycle now for a couple of years, its currently a Nimbus II.

I read these forums and talk to people and think of myself as a beginner but am i? Here’s some of what I can do…

-ride forwards (duh :-P)
-ride backwards (at least a hall length)
-do 5 or so mounts including a side mount
-ride on my stomach (though I hate it!)
-idle for as long as I like and on other foot for 20 or so rocks
-i can hop with or without holding on
-i can skip with a rope whilst hopping
-currently learning to wheel walk though only 4-6 pushes so far before I come off…

So what do you think? There are so many people who can do so much more but what makes a beginner a beginner and when do you cross the line into non-beginner or whatever?

you cross the beginner like when you think you do.

Good question

If you’re a beginner so am I
I have been able to ride a unicycle for 17 years
I can get on it and ride as far as I want
Can’t do any fancy mounts. Can’t do much other than forwards backwards and idle. But can do these well

It depends what you want and where you want to get to with your unicycling. I’m pretty happy with what I can do. I enjoy it
I don’t think I’ll ever be doing 5 stair sets or 540 s and I don’t have a clue what a body varial is. But I can ride a uni. And can ride pretty well. So by my definition whether you’re a beginner or not depends on your goal

You may be a beginner in street, flat or trials but by no means you are a beginner when it comes to riding unicycles. Like Fatlazypig already said, it all depends on what you enjoy.

I think you are a beginner when you recently started riding. As the years go by there will remain skills unconquered but it won’t make you a beginner.

There will always be people better and there will always be people worse than you. Like FromTheWoods said, your not a beginner unicyclist. People here say they are beginner street riders or beginner trials riders, then you see them in a video… They are by no means beginners, but they consider themselves beginners.

I find it most useful to not use those terms when discussing my level, with all the time, blood, and sweat I have put in it would be too disappointing :slight_smile:

Stop worrying about whether you are a beginner and just ride.

“In the beginner’s mind there are many possibilities, but in the expert’s there are few.” –Zen Master Shunryo Suzuki

I would say you’re a beginner until you feel you’re not. You know more mounts than I do, and it sounds like you can idle much better than I can, and almost definitely can ride backwards further, but I haven’t considered myself a beginner in a long, long time.

It’s like anything else. There will almost always be someone, or many someones, better than you at something, but that doesn’t mean you’re a beginner at it. :slight_smile:

Because I just started getting into this sport at the beginning of the year, I still see myself as a beginner. My rides aren’t the most graceful but I am improving, and there are other elements to riding I’m still working on (like free mount, idle, turning, ect). Since there’s so much to learn, I’m sure the ‘beginner’ status will live deep inside but I’m at the point right now that I could care less of being a ‘beginner’ as most of the general public would think you’re a pro if you can ride 50 feet.

I find this similiar with my yoyo hobby. I can try to nail a trick, completely miss/fumble up and people will be amazed and tell me I should compete. I then have to quickly tell them that the trick came out fumbled and attempt the trick again…followed by getting a statement like “Can you walk the dog?”

So true! I get asked quite often if I am training for some kind of competition because what I do impresses them. Well I still consider myself a beginner street/flat/trials rider but that’s just me. I will always feel like a beginner no matter what I can do on unicycles because I am always trying new things that frustrate me at first but being a beginner isn’t bad as long as you know how YOU define it :wink: For me trying to overcome that beginner-thinking-thing is the motivation that keeps me going :wink:

But the amount of years make you a beginner. If you have a long carreer, and are over 50% of it (hard to determe in advance), then I guess it’s not the beginning. But what’s the base to calculate from? The average years a unicyclist is active? Then you also have those who still act as beginners while they are not. Maybe it’s better to just practise in stead of thinking too much about this issue. That would solve the “problem” probably faster.

Thats a cool quote! But when it comes to unicycling I think it might not apply :P.

When it comes to me, everything seems possible. One, because I can do a lot of things that some people would think isn’t physically possible. But also because I’ve been in this sport long enough to see many things that people thought would be impossible, but is now a reality for a lot of riders.

And to all my little students, the way they see things is, everything they see me do is impossible for them haha and every challenge I set them is beyond impossible haha.

So maybe a quote that is more fitting for us unicyclists:

“If you posses skills that once upon a time seemed impossible to you, you’re passed the beginner level. Something we accept as unicyclists, is that we have and most likely always will have, the power to amazing people with things that come naturally to us” -Chris Huriwai ;0

You have a couple years of experience, and have some fair skills. I wouldn’t say you’re a beginner at all. To me a beginner is someone with little experience and/or around the free mounting/confident riding kind of level. Maybe you just think you’re a beginner because what a lot of riders on this forum would call beginner tricks (180 unispin, crankflip etc) BEGINNER tricks. They are not beginner unicycle tricks. They are beginner STREET or FLATLAND unicycle tricks. Which is a whole new game then just “unicycling”. You could be considered a complete unicycle master, but when you bring your unicycling into another category, no doubt you will feel like a beginner at times.

Are you a flatland/street/trials/freestyle beginner? Probably.

Unicycle beginner? No :stuck_out_tongue:

Aw everyone beat me to it…

Dredging up an old thread

As an actual beginner, trawling for helpful threads, I think it is confusing to call yourself a beginner once you can basically ride independently of a support for distances measured in tens of yards rather than counting revolutions. Unless someone invents another term like - ‘pre-unicyclist’ - for those of us still working on it. If you wouldn’t turn up to a ‘beginner’s unicycle’ class at the local gym, or if you would hoping for some tips but you unicycled there, my view is that you are now past the ‘beginner’ label and are now an ‘improver’ or a ‘relatively new unicyclist’ or something.

It would actually be really helpful to have a ‘beginners’ section on the forum so long as those of you who can actually do it still came there to comment.

There’s a what some people consider a beginner’s thread.

Learning Journal

We don’t have sticky threads so any type of thread like this moves down the list and usually gets forgotten.

Unicycling is not a single discipline. A rider can be a beginner in some and highly accomplished in others. Relatively few riders can do everything so most of us are beginners in some areas.

Moreover it can be difficult to gauge one’s ability. I thought I was quite good at hills until I saw what others do on the likes of Fargo Street but now I feel like a beginner again.

I like that feeling because it tells me I can do so much more yet. Others doing the implausible helped me learn to ride in the first place by making my immediate ambition look tame. They still do.

You should have seen the “Beginner’s Course” for the Cross Country Muni races at Unicon 18. Not super-technical, but definitely not easy!

So really, it’s just a word. Or a state of mind.

It’s hard to look up states of mind on the forum though - ivebeen surfing around finding some great threads about the very beginner/pre-unicycle stage, but I’m sure there are more out there, and it would be nice to be able to find them all easily.

Amazing, I now have learnt what a sticky thread is, this computer speak has me baffled mainly, but I can learn much, quite innocently on a Unicycle Forum… How good is that, thanks… !!

Good idea!

I like that word: Improver.
It’s the word I was looking for to describe how I feel. To any unicyclist I would be a beginner, but to the nonunicyclists I am a master.

Thanx for that word!

I also really like the word “Improver”, very good.

I am no expert and do feel like a beginner at times. I have been riding for ages and can still learn something new every time I get on a unicycle.

Roger