How To Ride A Unicycle? Tips For Beginners [2021]

unicycle riding

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Riding a unicycle is a huge amount of fun. It’s a vehicle most commonly associated with circus entertainers and street performers but it’s also brilliant as a hobby.

It has one wheel, and it comes with a frame and saddle with a pedal-driven direct drive. Some new sports have been created because of the unicycle such as unicycle hockey and mountain unicycling, which is similar to mountain biking.

There are several types of unicycles but they all pose similar challenges. Here we will take a look at how to ride a unicycle so you can jump on one with confidence. Once you learn to unicycle, you’ll be wanting to show off to all your friends and family.

Let’s see how to learn to ride a unicycle!

Before you start unicycle riding, there are a few things that you need to check first. You should always buy a good quality unicycle otherwise it can be harder to ride. Better unicycles will have a higher level of stability. 

You should also make sure that you have the proper wheel size of the unicycle you are riding. Getting the right height and seat adjustment when riding a unicycle is vital for your comfort and confidence.

With the seat height adjusted you should be able to reach the foot pedal at the bottom of its stroke with a slight bend in your knee. If it is needed, you should get an extension post. In this sense, how to ride unicycles is similar to a bicycle as you should have the same feel on the seat.

Proper safety equipment is also essential such as wearing a helmet, and heavy-duty hand pads are a must. Knee pads are optional because you don’t want them to restrict your movement but high-quality models are easy to ride with.

how to ride unicycle

How To Ride A Unicycle:

If you want to learn to unicycle, choose a spot where you have something to hold on to, and you don’t hurt yourself or hurt others.

You should practice for 15-20 minutes at least twice a week or three times a week. When you mount on the unicycle, you should align the pedal cranks vertically to the ground. When your Unicycle is upright, one pedal will be close to the ground. Step on that pedal with the foot of your weaker leg.

  • Getting On Your Unicycle:

Sit on the unicycle by throwing your leg over the seat, then step on the other pedal. Pull yourself up while hold on to something for support. Keep rotating the wheel half turn forward and backward. Your weight should be on the floor of your pelvis and not on your thighs and your calves. At this point, concentrate on getting the feel of your unicycle.

When you are comfortable in your vehicle, start riding forward. You may fall off, but you can learn how to always fall on your feet.

  • Changing Direction:

If you need to turn or change direction, you have to twist your hips while peddling. This will turn the unicycle into your desired path. If you need to stop, then push back on the pedals, and it will come to a stop. Once you begin riding it, you will start with a few revolutions, and then slowly you will become an expert in riding your vehicle.

  • Unicycle Tips:

    • It is a good idea to wear padded cycling shorts when riding a unicycle
    • You have to focus your weight on the unicycle’s seat
    • Set a course to practice five feet apart, with an object to hold on to
    • Practice jumping on a pogo stick before riding a unicycle
    • Try practicing with your friends who can support your weight

Great Places To Learn To Unicycle:

A few examples of good places where you can practice your unicycle are

  • An indoor area with a smooth wooden floor
  • A tennis court free of bumps of rocks
  • A narrow corridor that will allow you to hang on to both walls. You can work your way along and back, trying to hold on less and less each time
  • You can practice between two chairs placed back-to-back in an open space
learn to unicycle

Frequently Asked Questions:

Is it hard to ride a unicycle?

As with anything learning how to ride a unicycle can be tough, but it is also an exciting ride at the same time. You’ll quickly get used to how to balance and start enjoying yourself.

Do you need to know how do you ride a bike to ride a unicycle?

It will help if you already know how to ride a bike for the experience of teaching your body muscle memory building. However, riding a unicycle is much more complex than riding a bicycle.

What is the easiest size unicycle to ride?

The specific answer to this will depend on an individual user but a wheel size of 20 inches is usually seen as a great figure.

Is riding a Unicycle good exercise?

Riding a unicycle is a great exercise because it teaches you balance, coordination and strength. It’s also a great workout for the legs and you may find they are quite tired after the first few practices.

How long does it take to learn to unicycle?

If you practice a unicycle for one to two hours a day for two weeks, you will quickly get better at it. As with anything you learn, true mastery can take a lot of time but after a few weeks, you’ll start to really enjoy riding a unicycle.

What muscles does unicycling use?

The place where you will feel the biggest workout is in the calf muscles. Riding a unicycle also uses core muscles which, is great for balance and overall health.

Can you ride a unicycle on grass?

You can ride on short grass but it’s more difficult. If you’re learning how to ride unicycles then find a hard and smooth surface.

Do unicycles have brakes?

Generally, no. As there is no chain, you can brake by simply using your pedals. On more advanced unicycles such as mountain models, there can be a brake. This will be situated under the seat.

Conclusion:

Hopefully, by now you have a great idea of how to ride a unicycle. They can be great fun and although it can take time to master the balance, the mechanism is fairly simple so there isn’t too much that can go wrong. Once you learn to ride a unicycle, you’ll love showing everyone your new skill.

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