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Old 2019-07-29, 10:27 AM   #36
OneTrackMind
Unicyclist
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: Murwillumbah, NSW, Australia
Age: 60
Posts: 1,148
Quote:
Originally Posted by slamdance View Post
I know someone mentioned to "just lean" when you turn, but I think that's very simplistic. In fact, we all try that first don't we? From other sports like biking, skating,..etc. we learn to do this. However, on the unicycle that doesn't simply work, because there is so much else going on with balance, weight and pedaling.
Leaning does simply work. An unconstrained wheel on a lean will turn in the direction of the lean. It is fundamental to the nature of a wheel. Yes, on a unicycle, you need to move your body's centre of gravity to stay balanced. This is by counterleaning the body at first and eventually also leaning the body in to balance the "centrifugal force". Unless you are leaning the wheel to turn you are still doing a "power twist" as you termed it.

Most beginners struggle with turns as they try to move on from the twist because they slow down and lose the momentum that is keeping them up. Often it is because they are steering by backing off on one pedal. The acceleration in a turn is about getting back up again at the exit. High speed non-trivial turns cannot be achieved without leaning the wheel. I expect you would be surprised how much you lean the wheel yourself.

Quote:
So, I would say to "focus" on your pedaling, are you kicking forward(weight on seat riders) or stomping down(crouching forward riders). If so, are you doing it evenly on both sides? If not, more force on your left pedal? Right pedal? Which way does it make the unicycle favor? Ah-ha.
I don't relate to your pedalling categorisation. Whether I'm fully seated or standing and leaning forward on a hill climb (crouching?) my focus is on using as much of the available pedalling arc as possible.

Moreover I don't think about pedalling in terms of pressure at all. For me it is about position. I know my foot needs to reach a certain position at a certain moment for me to stay balanced. The force applied is secondary in response to that.

I have actively developed my technique to minimise the effect of pedal thrust on the direction of travel. I believe it is important to be able to decouple drive and directional control.

Quote:
If you ever want to ride straight and keep both hands down on the saddle, how do you keep going straight? How do you correct if you start going left or going right? Leaning? Seriously?
Seriously yes. Sideways movements of the hips tilt the uni to steer it. The response is instantaneous so the adjustments are small and frequent. You don't have to wait to do a thrust correction when the pedal is in the right place again, which can be quite a distance on large unicycle.

Limitations on opportunity to make adjustments when steering with thrust is a technique likely to induce a weaving track.

Moreover, how do you turn at a precise point if your pedals don't happen to be in the right position as you reach it?

Quote:
No, It's the pedaling and how much pressure you apply on each side that creates the turning or off center tendency. So, just be aware and "compensate" by balancing with more force on the other side...or (what I prefer) just "lighten" the pressure on one side and you will see the unicycle respond from your pedaling adjustments.
I used to steer by adjusting pedal thrust but soon learned of its shortcomings. Backing off for a single pedal thrust looses way too much momentum on hill climbs where every thrust needs to contribute.

Quote:
(if it works, great, then stop reading this post)
I left commenting on this to the end. In effect you are saying, "I don't want to hear your alternative opinion."
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Last edited by OneTrackMind; 2019-07-29 at 10:28 AM.
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