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just some thoughts and questions about learning.

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  • just some thoughts and questions about learning.

    i just got a luxus 24".
    first thoughts are that it looks great and it seems like a learners uni. that's what i went for i guess. not too expensive if i don't keep at it. big enough for my size...5'10". it looks like a middle ground uni. not street enough for trials and not off road enough for muni. part of me wishes i'd gone for something a little more hardcore one way or the other but the sensible me says "let's not get carried away hey!"
    anyway...i haven't tried riding it yet but i am trying to idle. using the doorframe in my flat. maybe tomorrow i'll get outside. so how high does my seat need to be? a slight bend in the knee, almost straight but not quite? how do i get to put my full weight on the seat and not on my pedals? just trying to idle it's clear my thighs are working overtime. is this normal? and finally how to get my groin comfortable in the seat. and how do i know when the angle of the seat is set right?
    cheers!
    i know it's only rock 'n' roll...but i like it.

  • #2
    when I learned a had seat as high as possible so just a slight bend of knee with peddle at bottom ,you can lower the seat a bit when you get the basics

    higher seat will help your thighs out,

    I started by sitting on my uni watching tv and trying to get feel for it

    When got bit better I went from kitchen work surface to table maybe 3 foot


    Best tip is keep practicing everyday watch tv while learning and just get used to being on your unicycle

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by milkjam View Post
      part of me wishes i'd gone for something a little more hardcore one way or the other but the sensible me says "let's not get carried away hey!"
      There's always your next unicycle! But it sounds reasonable for where you are right now.
      so how high does my seat need to be? a slight bend in the knee, almost straight but not quite?
      The rule I've followed is that if your knee is completely straight with the heel of your foot on the pedal at the bottom position, that's as high as you'll ever want it. A cm or two lower is good for general road riding, several cm lower for muni and big hopping. Make small changes from there and see how it feels. You will probably get comfortable with a higher seat position as you gain more experience.
      how do i get to put my full weight on the seat and not on my pedals?
      I saw a lot of advice when I was starting but found that it really happened by itself after three or four months of riding. Obviously you need to put some weight on the pedals when you push them, both to go forward and also to correct your front-to-back balance, so you can't have your full weight on the seat all the time. The tricky part is getting your weight off the seat and then settling back onto it, but I never found a special secret. I got better by doing it more. It takes time.
      just trying to idle it's clear my thighs are working overtime. is this normal?
      Yes! We all go through that.
      and finally how to get my groin comfortable in the seat.
      "The trick is not minding that it hurts."
      and how do i know when the angle of the seat is set right?
      Learning unicycling takes a lot of time and practice, but an advantage is that it gives you plenty of time to make small changes and see if they feel better or worse. So experiment. I've found that I like the seat tilted more nose up than nose down, but not all the way up. If I tilt it to look cool like the pictures I see online, the nose will be too high for me. Your experience might be different.

      Just my take but maybe there's something useful in there. Good luck with it!

      Comment


      • #4
        The rule that Eddie gave for height is plenty good: heel of your feet on the pedal, your leg should be fully extended.

        For learning purposes, I've been to the local club and the guy teaching the newcomers has them put the saddle even higher than that. He raises it until you have to use the front of your feet (the "ball" behind the toes) because the middle of the feet doesn't let you go one full revolution - as you can't reach the pedal when it's down.
        It seems extreme, but it's actually clever because it really forces you to put all your weight on the saddle. Of course, that works better if you're learning on a flat ground.

        Once you get the feeling for riding, you can lower the seat a little bit.

        Comment


        • #5
          Hey another beginner like me!

          I started a few weeks ago. I can mount off a curb and ride between 50 and 100 feet.

          Last week I met up with a local group and the first pointer they gave me was to lower the seat. They said I was riding on my tippy toes. I couldn't lower the seat until I trimmed end of the seat post. Things were totally different after I lowered the post. It wasn't much. Maybe an inch or less. It took a bit of tweaking to find the sweet spot. You definitely don't want it too low. The back of my seat hits my belly button. I also measured my inseam and the distance between the top of the pedal and the top middle height of the seat. That gave me another indication that the seat was a bit too high.

          I found padded bike shorts help me but I'm a female so I have no idea what guys do to make their seats comfortable.

          M

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by milkjam View Post
            i just got a luxus 24".
            i haven't tried riding it yet but i am trying to idle. using the doorframe in my flat.
            It might be possible to learn to idle before you learn to ride, but I've never heard of anyone doing that.

            Get outside! Grab a wall to mount your uni and get your cranks horizontal, then let go, fall forward and start pedaling furiously to keep yourself up. Make sure you have plenty of pavement to fall on because that's what you will be doing over and over.

            After a month of this, you might be ready to start trying to idle. It took me several months, but I'm a slow learner. Once I started to work on it, though, I got to 25 strokes on one side after a month, but I really don't think I could have done it without learning to ride first.

            Comment


            • #7
              hey everyone, thanks for the tips and encouragement.
              by the way, i'm not trying to learn idling before i learn to ride it's just that i haven't been able to get outside yet and i couldn't wait to try and get started so i thought that's better than nothing. get a feel for sitting on it and rocking back and forth while watching idling tutorials on youtube. anyway i will definitely get outside today. cheers!
              i know it's only rock 'n' roll...but i like it.

              Comment


              • #8
                For what it's worth...
                Expect to spend about 3 weeks learning to ride the thing! Try to get out for half an hour twice a day.
                Do try to learn on a smooth surface rather than grass. Smooth concrete will be better than short grass to start with, sadly. Elbow pads are probably your best protection to start with

                Don't worry about mounting/idling until you can ride 50+m.

                Then go for it

                Oh yes, the thighs will hurt until you can ride about 3km, by then you will have your bum properly on the seat. And as you are probably aware, seats are a whole new issue

                Cheers

                James.

                As always, if you can find anyone who rides you have a huge advantage.
                "If something is too hard to do, then it's not worth doing. You just stick that guitar in the closet next to your shortwave radio, your karate outfit and your unicycle and we'll go inside and watch TV."
                Homer Simpson
                Haven't got the karate suit

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by Vertigo View Post

                  The back of my seat hits my belly button.

                  M
                  I think that you have the seat the wrong way round.
                  ______________________
                  Nimbus II 20"
                  Oracle 24"

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Vertigo View Post
                    I found padded bike shorts help me but I'm a female so I have no idea what guys do to make their seats comfortable.
                    flat is what guys do
                    Last edited by DavidHood; 2014-06-16, 07:52 PM.
                    My greatest fear is that, when I die, my wife will sell all my unicycles for what I told her they cost.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by krjames View Post
                      Do try to learn on a smooth surface rather than grass. Smooth concrete will be better than short grass to start with, sadly.
                      I am in two minds about this. Getting up close and personal with the ground is a regular and inevitable consequence of learning to ride and grass is a whole lot more accommodating.

                      OF course the down side is that grass has a higher rolling resistance and lawns are rarely perfectly smooth. Pretty much anything other than absolutely smooth is extremely destabilising at first.

                      I started out on my front lawn. It was especially difficult because there were several substantial irregularities hidden in the grass which threw me off many times when I stalled in them. I was pleasantly surprised when I got onto the footpath and found the going so easy.

                      However learning with them right from the beginning instilled a very deep sense of dealing with irregularities which continued to develop very quickly once I moved onto hard surfaces. It wasn't long after I got my stability established on the concrete footpath that started going across the pedestrian ramps up the road kerbs without too much of a problem. I put this down to having a good feel for getting weight onto my feet and riding through holes on the lawn.

                      It definitely took me longer to get started but I was aware of the extra problems in the grass and lowered my initial expectations. I think it could be heartbreaking for someone who wasn't patient.
                      Triton 36" + 29" | KH 29" | KH 26" | KH 27.5" Muni | Nimbus eSport Race 24" | Torker LX 24" | Qu-Ax Luxus 20" | Qu-Ax Profi 20" | KH / Impact 19" hybrid

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Learning certainly takes time and practice, I managed about a Day and could ride up street but with many hours of falling down all apart of the fun i guess. I first learned by leaning against a vehicle, and focusing on the pedalling the most, It is hard, but once you get it, it comes natural to ride, well for some i believe it does

                        I acually feel weird riding a bike now considering i use to ride bmx everyday before i discovered uni's

                        Good luck with it.
                        Last edited by Aaronraguse; 2014-06-17, 05:07 AM.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Going over bumpy surfaces is educational for learners at a certain stage, but I never rode on grass when first getting started.

                          Once I entrusted myself to the uni and my pedaling (rather than clinging to a support), I was able to ride forward for limited distances after only a few minutes. In retrospect, using a support was only helpful for launching myself forward. Using it while actually trying to ride was a waste of time, but that's what I saw everyone else doing.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Same here, I think I did too much muni before being good on flat smooth surface. The result is that I indeed can apprehend rough terrain pretty well, by standing on my feet and keeping pedaling, but when I hit a smooth section, I'm all over the place (getting better) because I don't let myself really sit in the saddle. So I use more energy than I should, and my riding is not super smooth. I'm re-learning that now.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by milkjam View Post
                              how do i get to put my full weight on the seat and not on my pedals?
                              It is normal for beginners to be tense, and not really a signal that something's wrong. Keeping balance is not natural yet, and unconsciously you are pre-tensioning your leg muscles in order to react more quickly. This will go away with more riding experience. You may be able to speed up the process by consciously reminding yourself to put less weight on your feet.

                              Originally posted by milkjam View Post
                              just trying to idle it's clear my thighs are working overtime. is this normal?
                              Originally posted by LargeEddie View Post
                              Yes! We all go through that.
                              This has to do with the previous issue: you wear your legs out with so much weight on the pedals. Some time from now you will pedal along in a relaxed way, and wonder what the heck did I spend all this energy on?

                              Originally posted by milkjam View Post
                              and finally how to get my groin comfortable in the seat.
                              Originally posted by LargeEddie View Post
                              "The trick is not minding that it hurts."
                              It should not hurt, from day 1. Assuming that you are male: don't sit on your nuts, they should be "before you". Well come to think of it: females shouldn't sit on nuts either.

                              Originally posted by pierrox View Post
                              The rule that Eddie gave for height is plenty good: heel of your feet on the pedal, your leg should be fully extended.
                              Note that "heel on the pedal" is for seat height determination only, not how you should ride. Normally your pedal should be anywhere between the middle and the ball of your foot, depending on preference and riding style.

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