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What got you into riding a unicycle?

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  • #31
    Because my son wouldn't. And middle age...

    2 reasons:
    1) I bought a unicycle when I was a teenager but never learned to ride it. I thought it would be fun.
    Fast forward 40 years... My son had a psychology class in high school, and one of the assignments was to learn a new skill. He picked the skill. He chose the unicycle. Like most high school students do, he procrastinated, and procrastinated. And procrastinated.
    So I thought I'll learn, and show the kid that if his old man could learn, so can he. I watched a bunch of you tube videos, remembering the one where the guy learned to ride in 2 hours 38 minutes. So I figured, I could do it in 5 hours. Sure enough, in secret, without telling anyone in the family, I went to the tennis courts, where there was a fence around it to grab onto, and figured it out ...
    One day when my son was working at the local department store rounding up carts, I took the whole family and showed everyone what all the mystery was about. That gave him the kick in the arse to get him motivated to learn. He figured it out, too, and he got a good grade for the assignment.

    2) MId life, and my extra weight brought me extra aches and pains and then more extra pounds. Everyone was telling me this comes at my age..... I just wasn't ready to accept that! I was at my all time highest weight, and just decided, I needed some exercise- any exercise. SO I never quit unicycling.

    Then the spiral: I exercised, I felt better, aches & pains disappeared, dropped weight, felt even better, saw improvements in my unicycling ability, dropped more weight, learned to free mount, more improvement, etc.

    I don't know when I got hooked, but I am. To date, my farthest ride has been about 8 miles. I started about April 2017. 4-5 unicycles later, It's time to learn another way to mount, the rollback mount is too hard on a 32". I assume I'll never be able to roll back mount on a 36".

    Bottom line, I feel at least ten years younger. And unicycling is to blame!


    • #32
      I think the first time I had a thought of giving it a try was when I had started to work as a software developer in 2000-something. In our team we had made a whole world of Dutch political figures who actually were aliens and one of them was an evil clown that rode on unicycle. But that thought never came to something substantial.

      Then in 2015 I decided I needed to change my life as I was single and only filled my time with work, playing computer games and watching films and then I read about unicycling that anybody can do it as long as you are persistent. I took the challenge and now I'm hooked.


      • #33
        I guess it was Spite.

        My mrs and I saw a 20" uni advertised in Aldi magazine. She said to me at the time jokingly .. surely your not going to buy it.... and that did the trick for Jimmy....4 years later Jimmy is riding 50Km per week on the 36. Funny thing is Spite triggered the urge and then when I started to Google and understand the health and posture benefits and it looked cool, plus where I live is flat and apt for riding, investing the time and effort into learning to ride ....altered the motive from I guess Spite to enjoyment.... jimmy


        • #34
          When I was learning to fly helicopters the instructor said learning to hover was like learning to ride a unicycle. Well I'm here to tell you he must have never tried to ride a unicycle! A number of years later a friend bought a couple at a surplus school auction so of course I had to try and of course I couldn't do it so I was hooked.

          Now my high tech carbon fiber tri bike as flattened cracked tires. My fixie stuck in the corner of my office gathering dust and I probably haven't missed more than a handful of days riding since June 10th. Oh yea and I deactivated my smart phone and bought a new flip phone a couple months ago! There's a lot to be said for simplicity.

          I've said it before that if it was easier to learn it would be extremely popular. I find it very much like snow skiing and every day after I go out at noon I think how fortunate I am. Heck it's like being able to go snow skiing for an hour each day year round.


          • #35
            A good friend of mine got a 20" Unicycle for a surprise birthday present. Now this friend is very competative. Ie gets good at something, then likes to challenge everyone to have a go. So i thought i would get one up on him.
            I bought myself a 20" cheapo of Ebay and the plan was keep it quiet until i could ride it. Then when my mate started throwing out challenges it would be really funny. The reality was my mate gave up very quickly and i got hooked just as quickly. 11 months later my mate sold his and i have 4 different sizes from 20" to 36"

            Regards Phil
            27.5 KH
            36" Nimbus Oracle


            • #36
              Many years ago there was a tv show called the Unbeatable Banzuke that had a unicycle obstacle course. I was amazed at the skill these people had. I figured if people could learn do all that then I could at least learn to ride in a straight line.

              I still watch episodes on YouTube occasionally.
              I'm now pretty obsessed with unicycling and ride every day.

              Thanks crazy Japanese game show.


              • #37
                I like to learn new things, especially if it gives me a skill not everyone can do. I am also interested in not injuring myself and having to put up with decreased mobility and pain as I age. It is one thing to be a hot shot at something when you are young, and a wreck when you are older, or before your time from taking an unnecessary risk. So I follow examples of old people who are successfully fit and healthy and mobile, and try to learn from that.

                I was motivated primarily from the nice guy Stephen Jepson of He learns something new every year and has an impressive array of agility and balance skills, in his 70's.

                I became very overweight for various reasons, and practicing unicycling gives me a killer workout, and has helped me lose a ton of fat so far. I started unicycling last year close to 400 lb, and so far under 300 lb, a long way to go. I am under 6 ft and was once very muscular and physically strong.

                Was looking to do something other than lifting heavy weights, had zero endurance and little stamina. I am still a wall dependant beginner, and have to limit my practice sessions, but I notice that the lighter I get, the more I can practice. One day it will just click.

                After I get the hang of this, and much lighter, I will see how far I can get with trials and mountian uni. I used to ride motorcycle trials and other dirt biking long ago. I enjoyed the challenge of obstacles and balance, was very serious about it. After I get decent at unicycling I intend to pursue other balance and agility disciplines.

                I like that unicycling costs so much less than other things I was into, is environmentally friendly, and takes up so little room. I don't need a big vehicle or trailer and large space to store them. Seems to be a very satsfying pursuit. Wish I took it up long ago.

                Human gyroscope in training.


                • #38
                  A ten dollar unicycle at a garage sale about four years ago reminded me of an unrequited vision I had of riding a unicycle when I was a kid.

                  This week I bought my fourteenth and fifteenth wheels. I wanted the Nimbus five foot giraffe but it came with a UDC Club 20. Both needed some love having been neglected at the back of a shed for a few years. They came up quite well.

                  "Hello, my name is OneTrackMind and I am a uniholic".
                  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


                  • #39
                    My reason

                    I was introduced in a school of performing arts (think "Fame") that I attended in high school. We were doing the show " Barnum" , so naturally, the director wanted us to learn tricks. I learned to flip in the air, one other gentleman learned to ride a unicycle we had in the dance room. I decided to give it a go, as I was an avid bike rider, I figured it would be easy. I was promptly dumped on my @ss. I decided this uni wasn't going to get the better of me, so I bought my own, watched tons of youtube videos and began learning on my own. Now I can just about freemount and I'm going to be upgrading to a Nimbus Oracle 29 soon!
                    Naljubuites', naljubuites', Aeria gloris, Aeria gloris


                    • #40
                      when i saw an old video of my favourite japanese actress riding a unicycle. right that very moment, i decided to learn riding a uni. i thought if she can do it, i can too.


                      • #41
                        I own: Quax 20 / KH 27,5 / KH 20 / Nimbus Hatchet 26x4,8
                        I租 like to have also: KH 24+Schlumpf, Nimbus 24 ultimate
                        I鼠l never try: Freewheeling (too dangerous), g36 (too fast), giraffes (too tall)


                        • #42
                          About 15 yrs ago, saw some random video of mountain unicycling around the time I was getting just a little bored of mountain biking my local track. Instantly I thought, I have to do that.


                          • #43
                            I got my first unicycle in about 1987.

                            I am a Morris dance. Morris dancing is a traditional English dance form. In 1987 I became the "Fool" of the team. That meant that it was my job to fill in the gaps between the dances and generally add to the show with a bit of audience involvement. It gave me a general interest in performing skills.

                            Then one day I saw a performer on a unicycle doing a tightrope act at Nottingham's annual riverside festival. i got talking to him after the show and he told me where I could buy a unicycle. Ironically, Halfords (one of the biggest chains of bike shops in the UK) were agents for Pashley who were one of the few manufacturers of "off the peg" unicycles at the time.

                            I chose the "UMX" which was nominally an "off road" uni, although it had only a 20" wheel and a 1.75" tyre.

                            I performed on it for a while, and also got into the habit of riding the easy paths around our local nature reserve.

                            A few years later, needing to get fit and lose a bit of weight, I got my old unicycle out and had a go on it. That led to a session of internet browsing and I came across this site, and UDC. I think my first new purchase was a 26" Pashley Muni, followed by a 20" Nimbus 2.

                            Over the years, I have owned 20, 24, 26, 28, 29 and 36 inch unicycles and a 24 inch UW and have ridden medium distances (max 56 miles, but mainly 10-20 miles) on the road and easy paths, and woodland muni/cross country. I still need to lose weight and get fit, but I'm not doing bad for 55.

                            30 years after that first purchase, unicycling has been a big part of my life.
                            My first novel, Bridge of Otherwhere, Michael Wilkinson, on Kindle. A tale of subtle magic, mystery, friendship and love. For US$ page:


                            • #44
                              Originally posted by Mikefule View Post
                              unicycling has been a big part of my life.
                              same for me.
                              As I was performing in a brass-band a long time ago (was it 1969 or 1970? I don't remember) I saw that guy performing on a unicycle: his name was "Coin-coin de St Tropez" so I thought that this kind of trick was for me.
                              Being slightly addicted to procrastination I decided to try that in 2002 (or 2003 I don't remember): I saw a unicycle in a shop and on a buying impulse bought it!
                              Now the hard part was to learn ... took me at least 2 months (and I am still learning).
                              Now I have many unicycles but I prefer Muni (I find road-riding boring).
                              My MD tells me she would like to see more people as fit as I am but the main benefit is in my mind ... thanks to all the people on this forum (and thanks Mikefule: your writings inspired me!)
                              One Wheel : bear necessity
                              (Abuello RodoMancat)


                              • #45
                                Originally posted by wobbling bear View Post
                                (and thanks Mikefule: your writings inspired me!)
                                Thank you. I ride a bit less these days, and write a lot less in the forum. I'm still writing, though: 93,000 words into my first novel.
                                My first novel, Bridge of Otherwhere, Michael Wilkinson, on Kindle. A tale of subtle magic, mystery, friendship and love. For US$ page: