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Old 2017-08-08, 09:14 PM   #1
oldfatboy
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Anybody here learn to rid unicycle after age 60?

I searched and read about how old people are that still ride unicycle, but only saw two comments about learning after age 60.
So, just curious how old you were when you learned to ride a unicycle if over 60.
How long did it take to ride more than just 1 or 2 revolutions?
How did you practice and/or what did you do to learn?
I read the John Foss either knew or helped a man to ride at the age of 92. That's amazing.

fwiw- I first learned when I was about 53...thereabouts.
I learned by mounting and sitting on unicycle while in doorway. Then did the same with a post by my sidewalk. About a month later, I did two or three revolutions between a couple of posts. Gradually got to ride the length of sidewalk to the curb, about 40 feet or so.
Some time later (forget how long), it dawned on me that maybe I could hold on side of my car, mount the unicycle and start riding. That took a week or so, but finally started riding up to about 200'. After maybe a month, I got to where I could ride the length of the street, which was just a connector road between two parallel roads, about 300 yards, but I couldn't ride over bumps, cracks, dips in the road, or I would UPD.
Then I had to put everything away after surgery and moving. Just assembled the 20" and 24" Toker unicycles so that I can learn again/relearn.
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Old 2017-08-08, 09:52 PM   #2
oldfatboy
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Forgot to mention that part of my reasoning for asking is that my oldest brother will turn 68 about 4 weeks after I turn 65....later this year.
Whereas I am out of shape, clumsy, and have bad eye to hand coordination, he is just the opposite. He has run marathons after age 60, runs about every day, rides mountainbike, and does a lot of hiking. However, he doesn't think he could ride a unicycle even tho I did and am trying again.
So, looking for instances of people that have learned after age of 60

PS don't know how to edit the title, I see the mistake

Last edited by oldfatboy; 2017-08-08 at 09:54 PM.
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Old 2017-08-09, 12:38 AM   #3
Young at heart
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Husband and I were 64 and 63 when we learned. Went daily for a while to a basketball court, so we could hug the fence. Probably took about 16 hours in small increments, before we were able to ride and be free! Haven't done it in about a year. Husband gave it up for comfort reasons and it's no fun doing it alone. Read somewhere about a guy who learned for his 70th birthday, so he could ride to work! Perseverence is key, but not long practices. Shorter is better. And wear shin guards and gloves.
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Old 2017-08-09, 01:17 AM   #4
oldfatboy
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Wow! Congratulations and thank-you for posting.
Wish I had a gym/basketball court to ride in/on, but don't so will do what I have to...learn out on pavement
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Old 2017-08-09, 02:04 AM   #5
JimT
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Probably all depends on the person. I learned to ride a uni when I was a kid but no tricks and just short distances on level ground. After nearly 60 years of not riding I recently pick up a 35er and am progressing well. I'm in good shape with no heath issues and really have not noticed any age related differences from when I rode as a kid.
I've read that balance gets poorer with age but have noticed no problems. In fact I just looked and there are balance tests to evaluate older folks. I did a simple test and seem to be as good as a much younger person. I've also heard that bones get brittle with age and I don't know about that. Seems mostly be related to osteoporosis in women.
I guess that some old folks can sit around and act like old folks and some can live life to the fullest.
Jim
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Old 2017-08-09, 04:55 AM   #6
johnfoss
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldfatboy View Post
I read the John Foss either knew or helped a man to ride at the age of 92. That's amazing.
Uh oh, not sure where that one came from. Possibly from me mentioning my grandfather getting on a unicycle once at age 82. He lived in LaCrosse, WI, and we were returning from the USA Convention in the Twin Cities, just a few hours away. He wanted to try it and we got him on board. He clung to my dad and me for a bit and then got off. His comment: "Now I can see why it's hard!"

I've read about many people who have learned in their 70s (and met at least one). I think it's more about attitude than anything else, that and having a body that's still willing and able. Got to take it easier than a teenager!
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldfatboy
Some time later (forget how long), it dawned on me that maybe I could hold on side of my car, mount the unicycle and start riding.
I always recommend to people to hold onto "someone else's" car.
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldfatboy
...but I couldn't ride over bumps, cracks, dips in the road, or I would UPD.
You were just getting to the fun part...

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldfatboy View Post
He has run marathons after age 60, runs about every day, rides mountainbike, and does a lot of hiking. However, he doesn't think he could ride a unicycle even tho I did and am trying again.
It is of course up to the rider to decide if they believe they can do it. He should know that if he's willing to try, with his background he absolutely should be able to learn, there's nothing stopping him.

The other day we met a guy on the bike path, a road biker who was talking to us about how much riding we do. He was clearly in his 60's or higher, and told us he's training for his 40th Ironman Triathlon. He said about a third of those have been the "full" Ironman, and the other 2/3 are the half-sized ones. Still, that is seriously hardcore! In fact, the one he's preparing for is to be held at Mt. Tremblant, outside of Montreal, Canada. That's where the Muni events were at Unicon 17!

Quote:
Originally Posted by JimT View Post
I've also heard that bones get brittle with age and I don't know about that.
I'm not a doctor, but I think the bone thing is that if you don't use them, you lose them. If you stay active and move around a lot, your bones will stay strong. Take away the stress on them, and they'll "get lazy". Perhaps similar to what happens to people who spend many months in outer space; if they don't work out their bones and muscles can get pretty weak.

Also, the more you fall down, the stronger your bones get. In theory...
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Last edited by johnfoss; 2017-08-09 at 04:56 AM.
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Old 2017-08-09, 05:01 AM   #7
slamdance
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Let's clarify

Are you talking about "learning for first time"? at 60
Or...are you "including" yeah...I rode a unicycle when I was 10 yrs old...and now I want to ride it again at 50, 60?
Please call it "re-learning" to ride again. You've done it before and it's not like you started from scratch. Unigeezer upon first reading claims this also, but later you find out he rode when he was 10.

Every kid has seen or heard or may have tried a unicycle when they were young. The ones who had the guts to try it. The one's who tried it and could possibly even ride it. Those are very few "special" kids. If that is you. You know you can do it...or have a "possibility"..if you ever "wanted" to try again...right? Righttttttttttttt. You are not starting from scratch.

What about the rest of us? Never done it? Maybe give it a try? Hey!!! Got it. How many of "true beginners" fighting the enemy called age doing it for the first time EVER!!

Last edited by slamdance; 2017-08-09 at 05:08 AM. Reason: grammatical
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Old 2017-08-09, 05:53 PM   #8
oldfatboy
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Quote:
So, looking for instances of people that have learned after age of 60
slamdance, that doesn't "clarify"?

For myself, I learned to ride some 10 or 11 yrs ago. Now, I am trying to relearn/learn again (whatever the proper term is). That's just what I'm doing. What I'm asking for is what the title asks...learn to ride after age 60.

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnfoss
always recommend to people to hold onto "someone else's" car. 
lol, now why didn't I think of that. However, when I head out to the parking area to start riding again....

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnfoss
Uh oh, not sure where that one came from.
If memory serves me correctly, it was under the topic of 55+ riders. However, having searched and read so many topics, that could be the wrong topic. Seems like the post was dated around 2008. Glad you wrote what you did here because I was thinking of telling my brother about him too
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Old 2017-08-09, 07:09 PM   #9
Curious George
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65 and learning

Hi, I'm that 65 year old your looking for. I've never ridden a unicycle before.

I'm about 90 days into my unicycle journey. I'm in decent shape, coordinated and have good balance but find that unicycling is hard! My progress has been really slow, but I have been persistent. I try to ride at least an hour every day, and keep revising my near term goals, like going a mile, idling, mounting, etc.

My first month saw little progress. I had nobody to help me, so I watched all the videos I could. I trained in a school tennis court, so had lots of fence to hold onto. I tried going up and down the fence. I tried using hiking poles as an aid. It was when I finally adjusted my seat up to a proper height, and just let go and fell allot, that I began to make some progress.

It took me 30 days to ride 100', 45 days to reach 1000', 60 days to consistent curb launches, and 80 days to ride a kilometer. My biggest challenge is learning to relax and sit in the saddle. Actually, my BIGGEST challenge is mental - not quitting for the slow progress I'm making.

I watch YouTube videos where "youngsters" learn in a week or two, and are off riding in the woods. That's not me, and it was disheartening at the beginning (and still sometimes now!). But the small successes add up. To me it's like golf or tennis, where you can be having a bad day, but then hit that one special shot, and it puts a smile on your face.

The good news is that I'm having fun! My legs are in great shape. I get complements and thumbs up from kids, which is pretty neat. And it's different. I like different!
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Old 2017-08-09, 09:25 PM   #10
oldfatboy
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Wow, congrats CG. Thanks for the info.
My shin/knee guards were supposed to be here on the 7th, but now, there isn't even an arrival date posted on the USPS site. Once they missed the 7th, somebody took that off the tracking site. If not here tomorrow, then I'll try the local post office and see if they can help find my package.
What it means is that I've lost at least 3 days of riding, Of course, that doesn't include the days I was waiting when I first ordered the safety gear.
I am very anxious to find out how quickly I can start riding since I first learned 10 or 11 years ago. Might even start another discussion about that.
Like you, I've watched a great number of videos, looked at all the pictures I could see, and read everything that seemed to pertain to my situation and info to share with my brother and try to get him on a unicycle

Keep up the good work.
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Old 2017-08-09, 09:55 PM   #11
Curious George
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Thanks, and good luck! Probably much easier the second time around, and more fun if you can get your brother involved. CG
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Old 2017-08-09, 10:17 PM   #12
1wheelonthefly
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I've been back to riding for a month now. A few weeks ago I got me a K/H 19"
trial uni. With the fat tire, it has on it. It's so much easier to ride. Then the toker 24" I had. http://www.unicycle.com/kris-holm-19...unicycle-2017/
If some one was to ask me what unicycle to start out with That's the one I would suggest.
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Old 2017-08-09, 10:46 PM   #13
oldfatboy
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btw CG - what unicycle are you learning on?

Last edited by oldfatboy; 2017-08-09 at 10:46 PM.
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Old 2017-08-10, 10:30 AM   #14
wobbling bear
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started at 53 .... still learning
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Old 2017-08-10, 07:57 PM   #15
Curious George
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oldfatboy,

I'm learning on a 20". MUCH, much easier than a 24", at least for me. I'm 5'8" tall, and a chunky 180 pounds, so put that into the equation.

I have a Nimbus II 24" that I rode again today, just to see the differences now that I'm a little better at riding. I find it's just a bit more difficult in every area: a couple inches higher to mount/step off. A little heavier, so more momentum is necessary to start and turn. Harder to pedal up and down hill.

I bought the 24" from UDC, on their recommendation, 3 years ago. I played with it for a week, and put it away. I had no motivation at the time.

This spring, I decided to take up the challenge when I found out a friend rides. It was the "if he can do it, I can do it" motivation. I spent time on this website, and started watching YouTube videos. I spent a lot of time reading how to get going, and it seems the advise on size runs 50/50 on the 20" vs 24" size for adults.

Perhaps for the younger crowd that may be true, but throw in age and diminished balance into the equation, and I'm all for the 20" unless the person is well over 6'. My first day of practice this year was on my 24", and I did a face plant trying to balance on the silly thing. NOT a great way to start...

I went onto Craiglist, and found a Torker CX 20", for $30. This is their basic model, no handle on the seat, skinny tire, thinner seat post, etc. It took a beating, I had to replace the pedals once, but it's a perfectly fine unicycle.

This is what I learned on. The size was less intimidating to me; I somehow felt safer being a little closer to the ground. I just find it a more comfortable ride and mentally less stressful. I can ride it at a slower pace, and it's less likely to stall because of the smaller wheel size.

I did upgrade. After 2 months on the CX, I was watching Craigslist, and found a like new Nimbus II 20" for $100. It's a much nicer piece of equipment and more fun to ride, but I don't think it affects my learning curve at this point.

Did I say that I think learning on a 20" unicycle is the way to go? LOL

CG
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