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Old 2015-08-17, 03:08 PM   #16
Engineer on a Unicycle
Learning to say "on your left"
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Originally Posted by Catsmeat View Post
I'm pretty much free of the wall now, except for using it to mount. Went 50+ feet a few times tonight without touching it or leaning toward it.
Congratulations - you are a unicyclist!

The rest is just about increasing what you can already do. It will take some time, but 50 feet will become 100 will become 500.

I think the ideal thing now would be to find a place with no wall, just a tree/lightpost/pillar to use for mounting, so that there's no "evil magnet" to tempt me.
A place where you could ride in large circles might be even more useful. At about a month in myself, I might (?) with luck be able to get turned around on a driveway by wrenching the unicycle around, but to actually ride smoothly through a circle ("going straight along a curve") would still take me more room.

Another nice thing about a circle is the sense of goal/accomplishment. Getting one lap of the office felt great - and so did getting two in a row a week later.
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Old 2015-08-17, 10:36 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Catsmeat View Post
I'm pretty much free of the wall now, except for using it to mount. Went 50+ feet a few times tonight without touching it or leaning toward it. UPDs have drastically increased, but that's to be expected. I think the ideal thing now would be to find a place with no wall, just a tree/lightpost/pillar to use for mounting, so that there's no "evil magnet" to tempt me.
I've been practicing on a parking lot close by. The lampposts are out of reach, because of bushes, but I simply held on to my car and then try to cycle away from it. Just be careful not to kick away the uni against your car when you lose your balance. I got a nice scratch on the side of it. Then as soon as you get the hang of cycling a bit, focus on free-mounting, which I did in my third week.
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Old 2015-08-18, 06:08 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by Engineer on a Unicycle View Post
but to actually ride smoothly through a circle
It's amazing how beginners struggle with the same issues. It took me a while until my turns stopped being jerky. Some things about turning I learned along the way were:
  • In the beginning, try making the seat lean against the leg which is on the side towards which you're turning.
  • Look in the direction you're turning.
  • Experiment with increasing your tire pressure.
  • Start pedaling faster just when you start the turn. A friend of mine demonstrated riding in circles, before I could do it smoothly. He was riding rather fast. I didn't make the connection between the smoothness of the circle and the speed...until later. Speeding up around a turn may be counterintuitive, because typically we slow down when trying something difficult. But we can't lean into a turn at slow speeds.
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Old 2015-08-18, 08:50 PM   #19
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Great suggestions there from elpuebloUNIdo. That last one in particular was big for me. I had a tendency to want to slow down around a tight turn, which never worked. That was an instant UPD. The trick was to straighten out the turn just a little but pedal harder when I started to feel unstable.

It's ok to make stop signs for a while. They'll get to be more like circles as you get better at maintaining your balance with the unicycle leaned over.
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Old 2015-08-19, 09:52 PM   #20
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The tips offered above by PuebloUNIdo have already been part of my subconscious for a year or two, but it is very helpful to see them in writing.

Learning to ride one-footed is a little bit like reliving the first days of learning to ride, except that it takes longer. Making turns, especially turns of your own choosing rather than turns made to avoid a UPD, seems to be a good way to break through plateaus you encounter in one-footed riding, so I will see if I can apply PueboUNIdo's tips to my current struggles. I managed 56 revoluciones the other day with my left foot, though when I try to do even one with my right foot (PuebloUNIdo's earlier advice) my unicycle suddenly acquires a mind of its own and tosses me into the air!
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Old 2015-08-22, 10:17 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by Catsmeat View Post
Reasons I think this might be a bad idea are that 1) I'm AWFUL at mounting with my left foot and it might not be worth taking the time to learn, and 2) The walking time gives my legs, which are very sore, a little break from the hard work. Meh. What do you think?
Yesterday I UPD'ed while having a female passenger aboard, so the unexpected and heavier force on my foot caused some minor injury, making dismounts unpleasant at the moment.

So yes, mounting with your non-dominant foot will give you the control it also takes to dismount with your other foot, it would be useful in case your dominant foot can't stand too much force.

Since you complain about sore legs I still think you should learn, but maybe a later -more convenient- stage, when you feel ready for it. It's a level 2 skill, so not too difficult.
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Old 2015-08-27, 11:08 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by evil-nick View Post
It's prolly a good idea to learn both. I *always* mount left foot on pedal, but that made me become *very* dominant in hopping
Are you a leftie?
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Old 2015-08-27, 11:52 PM   #23
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I always mount (free mount) with my right foot since I am right handed, and I've been doing it that way for over 40 years. Seems to work for me. I would try whatever works for you. Keep it simple at least until you have gotten comfortable with the way you are currently mounting.
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Old 2015-09-04, 12:33 PM   #24
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Nope, righty, but I guess left-foot dominant?

Granted, if I wanted to be like everyone else I wouldn't ride a unicycle
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Old 2015-09-08, 03:08 AM   #25
Stupidity gets you 2 of these:
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I can think of a few rare situations in trials and MUni where it would be significantly harder to mount with one foot than the other. Also I have noticed benefits of learning other skills that seemed to not be at all related to something else I was working on to really help. So I think it'd be worthwhile to learn both sides.

+1 for first learning assisted mounts on both sides. I still can't freemount (some paralysis in my legs), when I do assisted mounts I find it significantly easier if my support is on the opposite side of the foot I'm mounting with, and my right foot's slightly easier.
Originally Posted by song View Post
Catsmeat, get away from that wall, you're wasting time!
If you UPD and don't get your feet on the ground fast enough you can REALLY get hurt. A friend insisted he didn't need wrist braces or the support, rode away, got about two revs, fell and broke his wrist. He refused to ever try again.

So, I always recomend staying close to your support untill you can gracefully dismount w/ the uni in front, at the exact spot and w/ the foot you intend to, and w/ each foot. That made UPD's much less scarry for me when I was learning.
Ride everywhere and never just ride anywhere. If you can ride where you are going within a hour, do it, and if you can do a trick 50-75% of the time do it along the way.- Bob Burnquist

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foot, learn, mount, worth

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