Wheel Walking

I know I know, use the search button. But I coulnd’t exactly find what I was looking for through there. Soooo, here is my bothersome post. Please help me if it is possible. I have 1 footed riding down, i can idle one footed, ride slow blah blah blah. All that good junk. But I just can NOT find my balance on the wheel. I don’t know if i’m not leaning back, not leaning forward. Can anyone give me advice on how they learned to find their balance on the crown and the wheel. Anything is appreciated.

i learned by going on a wall… doing what i thought was a wheel walk… fell off and repeated about 8 million times… i eventually got it but it was so jerking that i didnt like to do it… but someone told me… lean back to where it almost feels uncomfortable… then go as slow as possible… the leaning back almost to far helped me soooo much… so ust remeber to lean back alomost to far and go super slow…


I’m in the same boat as you. I can ride 1ft for ~20 revolutions, maybe more, and I can 1ft idle as well as I can with both feet, but I can’t seem to pull the other (right, driving) foot up to the top of wheel, push with it, and then push again with my left foot (the one that is on the crown as I ride 1ft). I’m tempted to practice right here in my room, but I know better than to let my slightly inebriated self onto a unicycle in a house…again. What a coincidence it is that I was thinking of posting a similar thread earlier today. When did you start unicycling? I started in late December of 2004. I want to be able to glide (I had an incredibly vivid dream of myself gliding around a corner once! I was so excited(!), and then disappointed when I woke up and couldn’t really glide :frowning: ) and I know that this is one of the first steps.

If anyone could tell what they learned before, and what helped them learn to glide, please do.

Rotate your hips forward so you end up sticking your butt out like you’re trying to make your butt look as big as possible. Then sit up straight. That posture will help get your weight slightly more back than normal. I got that tip while at a convention and it seemed to help me while learning to wheel walk.

Figuring out that balance point is tricky and at first it is going to feel very wrong (like you’re going to fall on your back if you lose control). But that’s where the balance has to be. You’ve got your feet and legs out in front of the unicycle and you have to balance that weight out front with your upper body favoring the back part of the balance envelope.

It took me a while to get comfortable with that for two foot wheel walking. Then it took me a while to get comfortable with it again for one foot wheel walking. It’s an odd feeling till you get used to it.

My progression for learning gliding was wheel walk, 1 ft wheel walk, and then gliding. Although i kind of learned 1 ft wheel walk and gliding at the same time. Wheel walking is very frustrating. Try just holding on to a fence or something like that, and practice wheel walking holding on to it. When that is easy gradually work your way away from the fence/wall. remember to lean back (not too much though). I think the easiest way to get into it is from a regular idle (not 1ft) or just riding really slow. Oh ya, its alot easier when the seat is higher.

Use the same steps to learn 1 ft ww but it probably shouldnt take as long. Gliding takes some time to learn becase you have to figure out the right amount of pressure on the wheel. Practce on a hill.

Oh ive been riding since May 05.

Grrrr! :angry:
I hate you young’uns who can learn things like that so quickly. Just wait till you’re over 30 and you try to do something like learn how to wheel walk and you’ll have a different perspective. :stuck_out_tongue:

I’m not as flexible as I was a few years ago, and I’m so big now and always aching all over (oi, my knees!). I’m so old at 17. I hope I don’t hurt when I get older :(…

goes to stretch

Gilby told me to start by using a wall and to go back and forth along it so I wouldn’t develop a tendency to need one hand exclusively. He also said to extend one foot as far forward as possible before pushing with the other. Also, go slowly; it’s a slow skill. That’s the way I started. Then I gradually worked away from the wall.

I have heard that you will never find the right balance point wheel walking unless you fall off backwards while learning. I believe it. I spent a long time leaning too far forward and getting nowhere. I always fell forward because, well, who wants to fall on their back? Then I got gutsy and started leaning back until I finally fell off backwards a couple of times. Finally I started playing with going into WW from one-foot idle and mounting directly into WW.

Do it on some short grass, that way your not afraid to fall.

I can’t do it yet, but on grass I was able to go about 10 feet or so.
Speaking of falling, I got my worst injury by trying to wheel walk. I almost broke my tailbone. It’s dangerous stuff.

Hey poisen.
For this.one thing that helped me is after I fell a bunch, I realized to have short kicks and be on the top of the wheel. By that i just mean don’t let your foot slide way down the wheel.

Also dude, don’t think ‘‘lean back’’ is some cure all or nething. Lol

Haha, i know stuff dosen’t come easy with unicycling chosen! Thanks for all the help though. And i’ve been unicycling since mid-november 2004. But, I have had poitns were I’d quit for a month. Then pick it back up. The longest i’ve ever went without unicycling at all was a month and a half. All in all, probably…9 months

cool, i’ve pretty much been uni-ing for that long (except i started in august last year), but i guess your farther than me because i am still learning to ride one-footed. the best i’ve gotten besides one-footed riding is jumping up 3 pallettes with the seat under me. and i still fell backwards and hurt myself when i did do that, but hey, who cares? :slight_smile:

haha, the most pallets i’ve jumped up onto with seat in was 4. Seat out, 2. I can do 3 forward hopping. I’m sure I could probably get 5 with a crank grab or something. I’m still learning trials.

how long do u practice wheel wlaking a day?

I cant “wheel wlak”, heck, i cant even wheel walk!

That’s exactly how I learned, too. I started trying wheel walking about a year ago and couldn’t get anywhere for the longest time, I just kept falling forward. I knew that I was supposed to “lean back more than you think you should”, but was always too afraid. Finally, I had to lean back while digging my heel in the tire so I could realize how much control I actually have over the wheel. I even intentionally took my foot off the tire so I would fall back, just to know how it feels. Once I did that a few times, I eventually started getting it. I only fell backwards by accident just a few times (less than five from what I remember), but I started getting a much better feel for my control over the wheel.

After taking some time off during the cold winter months, I resumed practice in the spring of this year and made a little more progress, and now I can go pretty far (my farthest is about 100-150 feet), and I have good control over my speed…I can go pretty slow now. I almost alway get into WW from a static mount, but can easily do so from normal riding, idling and one foot idling (I don’t think I’ve tried it from one foot riding, though). The one area that I am having a lot of trouble with now is returning to the pedals. I can usually find the pedal with my left foot, but always end up falling forward. Either I am afraid to lean back and/or afraid to take my other foot off the wheel. I did get it once, somehow, but it was probably just luck. If anyone has any advice on how they got back to the pedals, I would love to hear it.

I am now trying one foot wheel walking, and am having just about as much frustration as with regular WW, but I’ve gotten a few steps now and then, so I’m sure it’s just a matter of time til I get that, too.

The point of all this is that I have found it helpful to fall in both extremes (forward and backward) before I have enough confidence to find the right balance point. That may not be the best piece of advice for everyone to follow, but it did help me a lot. If anyone else tries it, just take the proper precautions so you don’t get hurt…even though I never got hurt by falling backwards, it is a risk and can cause serious injury. Just play it safe.


it takes awhile to learn it just takes time the easyest way is go as slow as possible

The easiest way to get back to the pedals is to learn how to 1-ft wheel walk first and get back to the pedals from 1-ft wheel walking rather than 2-ft wheel walking. :slight_smile:

The difficulty I have with getting back to the pedals from 2 foot wheel walking is looking down to see where the pedals are and waiting for them to get in the right position. It’s hard to see around (or through) my legs to see the pedals. Trying to look tends to through me off balance.

One strategy is to get your needs as close together and narrow as you’re wheel walking. Tilt your head to the side while keeping your upper body straight. Look out the corner of your eye and you should be able to see the outside edge of the pedal. That’s enough of a view to be able to see where the pedals are and you can then get your feet down there when the pedals get in the right position.

It’s easier with 1 foot wheel walking. It’s easier to see around your legs and easier to get your foot down when the pedals are right.

I’ve been trying to learn wheelwalking for almost as long as I’ve been able to ride a unicycle at all (a good number of years, that is…).
It’s been slowww progress but over the last month or so I feel I’m starting to get to the point where I feel almost in control and can start to think about, say, turning in a circle… or maybe even getting my feet back on the pedals…

One helpful tip, I think, is to find a gentle slope (and I mean gentle) and go UPHILL on it. Somehow this makes the balance easier to find, perhaps because you don’t have to lean back so much. Also, it slows you down, and helps to prevent that problem where you start going faster and faster and can’t slow down.

Question: which foot do you use for getting back to the pedals? Dominant or subordinate?
I always start wheelwalking with my left foot (I’m a righty), so should I go back to the pedals starting with that one too?

Wow, I butchered those sentences with the spell check. :o
Reminder to preview after doing a spell check.