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electricpen
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7 hours ago, electricpen said:

As some of you know I have spent the last 5 days learning to ride EUCs for the first time. I chronicled my progress here. I want to summarize some of my thoughts about my experiences here in the general forum as I see there are at least 3 new riders waiting for wheels, I think at least two of them are getting the same one I learned on - a KS 16s. I will try not to repeat too much stuff that is covered in the riding mechanics sticky.

1) I did a lot of inline skating, snowboarding, martial arts, etc. I still fell all over the place when I first started. But when it got better, it got better really fast. I went from being able to go 1-2 meters before falling on day 1, to 5- 10 meters day 2, and then hundreds/thousands of meters day 3. By day 5 I could ride for infinite amounts of time without falling over and have decent control over the wheel in most situations. Struggling through the first couple days was frustrating but it was worth it.

2) Personally, I only fell once in the last 5 days and maybe 60-70 km of distance covered as a completely new rider. My wheel fell a lot though. I always was able to jump clear and stay on my feet. I learned in a parking lot that had cars in it. Ideally, when you jump off the wheel you would step off the backside so the wheel doesn't run into you. Unfortunately for me since I didn't want the wheel to hit anyone's car and I decided early on I didn't like the strap that meant I had to kick the wheel or put my leg in front of it to block it to stop it from hitting cars sometimes. Just today I had to jump off my wheel and block it with my shin to stop it from hitting a small child on a scooter who decided to dash right in front of me without warning after staying in one place for at least 15-30 seconds as I approached them. The mother apologized profusely but I guess all that practice kicking the wheel down so it doesn't spin off and hit stuff paid off. Would have been awful if it ran into the kid probably. This is a more painful way of dealing with it than a strap - but I don't have any nerve endings in my shins anymore from Taekwondo so thats a plus I suppose. If you find your legs getting beat up maybe wear shin guards and face them in the direction you are getting hit (most people turn them towards the wheel on the insides of their legs).

IMG_20170813_173117.thumb.jpg.aa35063c3aa97bb131d8a55052847a31.jpg

3) Since your wheel is going to fall a lot regardless of whether you do or not, if you care about the cosmetic appearance of the wheel you probably should pad it. I followed some advice from @Hunka Hunka Burning Love and wrapped it with carpet padding and duct tape. Everything that is covered is 100% unscathed. I didn't cover the bottom of the pedals or the handle though and both of those have some scuffs but I don't really care *that* much. For my ninebot I covered the handle also but I was too lazy to cover the KS handle when I knew I would need to make a cutout for the button to extend the trolly and I was too lazy.

IMG_20170810_155634.thumb.jpg.14a1cbc181258955e257ce456ae65f6d.jpg

4) If possible you probably want something covering your fingers. It is hard to wear gloves under wristguards however but since I didn't really do much falling I actually had my fingers get more beat up than anything else because of all the grabbing and holding for a concrete wall I did to try to stay balanced initially. Grabbing a rough brick or concrete wall while falling down over and over again for a few hours is definitely going to chafe to say the least. I'd still choose wristguards over gloves just because friction burn heals faster than a broken wrist but I could see an argument the other way too. You're guaranteed to get beat up hands in the first day or two, falling badly enough to break a wrist is probably unlikely unless you completely eat it frequently and fall down a lot.

5) As @meepmeepmayer frequently advised me, sometimes you just need to wait. I made big jumps in ability from just taking a break from it for a bit and going back later. I practiced twice a day for the last 5 days, once in the morning or early afternoon and then once late at night before I slept.

6) I wore heavy boots to protect my ankles from getting beat up by the wheel, both from squeezing the wheel too hard trying to force it to balance as is common when starting, and also from jumping off it. Sometimes a pedal would clip one ankle when I jumped off or fell and the extra support is also nice since I probably would have sprained my ankle on day 3 or so if I hadn't been wearing the boots.

7) All the beginner videos present the following drills, usually in this order: Ride along a wall for support (or with a friend). Ride from pole to pole. Learn to mount by kick-pushing and getting your kickoff foot onto the wheel as you are moving forward. Learn to go straight without support. Learn to turn in circles. Learn to stop. I would suggest skipping the learning to mount part. Just use a wall or whatever to get situated on the wheel and try to go away from the wall as long as you can stay on the wheel. Learn to mount later.

8) Don't get discouraged! Everyone can probably learn this eventually, some faster than others, but it takes a bit of adjusting to. If a practice session is not going well or you are starting to do worse or get tired, just stop. Take a break and come back to it later. Sometimes when you come back later you will suddenly be able to do the thing that was frustrating you earlier.

Anyways, good luck and if you have any questions or whatever about what I did, just post in this thread and I'll try to answer them.

Good posting, and congrats on your progress :cheers:

I would suggest not riding anywhere near people until you can ride without thinking. And little kids are notorious for running out in front of you at the last second. I always use extreme caution when riding by any little children.  

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4 hours ago, ir_fuel said:

I just don't understand the "I don't want a strap so I will just go and hurt myself" mentality. But hey, whatever floats your boat :) 

I felt like the strap was making it harder to learn to balance because I would tug on the strap or be thinking about the strap and it wasn't long enough for me to wave my arms about wildly in all directions to help me balance :P

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Did you ever use or own other self-balancing scooters like a hoverboard? I suspect people who do then only have to learn one thing (swivel their hips instead of incorrectly tilting their wheel and body) instead of two (the self-balancing part).

I think my hoverboard really helped me with the EUC, but since one only learns once...

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Just now, LanghamP said:

Did you ever use or own other self-balancing scooters like a hoverboard? I suspect people who do then only have to learn one thing (swivel their hips instead of incorrectly tilting their wheel and body) instead of two (the self-balancing part).

I think my hoverboard really helped me with the EUC, but since one only learns once...

No, I never learned how to use a hoverboard. I have learned: Skiing, Snowboarding, Skateboarding, Inline Skating, and Bicycle.

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12 hours ago, electricpen said:

Personally, I only fell once in the last 5 days and maybe 60-70 km of distance covered as a completely new rider. My wheel fell a lot though. I always was able to jump clear and stay on my feet. I learned in a parking lot that had cars in it. Ideally, when you jump off the wheel you would step off the backside so the wheel doesn't run into you. Unfortunately for me since I didn't want the wheel to hit anyone's car and I decided early on I didn't like the strap that meant I had to kick the wheel or put my leg in front of it to block it to stop it from hitting cars sometimes. Just today I had to jump off my wheel and block it with my shin to stop it from hitting a small child on a scooter who decided to dash right in front of me without warning after staying in one place for at least 15-30 seconds as I approached them. The mother apologized profusely but I guess all that practice kicking the wheel down so it doesn't spin off and hit stuff paid off. Would have been awful if it ran into the kid probably. This is a more painful way of dealing with it than a strap - but I don't have any nerve endings in my shins anymore from Taekwondo so thats a plus I suppose. If you find your legs getting beat up maybe wear shin guards and face them in the direction you are getting hit (most people turn them towards the wheel on the insides of their legs).

 

12 hours ago, electricpen said:

Since your wheel is going to fall a lot regardless of whether you do or not,

May i ask you why your wheel is falling "a lot"???

When i understand it correct, you are able to drive now....in my view as soon you are over this Point, the falling of the wheel and the wheel running "somewhere" should be clearly over?! Otherwise you might have missed the part to "unmount" the wheel correctly, meaning the ability to stop without the wheel falling or running away...

Also you said you would skip the "mounting" part....

I would not advise to! Mounting and unmounting is essentially and gives you the security to handle your wheel properly...Also if you can Mount and unmount/stop there is (in my view) no Need for strips anymore.... If that "unmounting" stopping is really still a Problem i would try to learn that first, before going into public anywhere :-)

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2 minutes ago, KingSong69 said:

 

May i ask you why your wheel is falling "a lot"???

When i understand it correct, you are able to drive now....in my view as soon you are over this Point, the falling of the wheel and the wheel running "somewhere" should be clearly over?! Otherwise you might have missed the part to "unmount" the wheel correctly, meaning the ability to stop without the wheel falling or running away...

Also you said you would skip the "mounting" part....

I would not advise to! Mounting and unmounting is essentially and gives you the security to handle your wheel properly...Also if you can Mount and unmount/stop there is (in my view) no Need for strips anymore.... If that "unmounting" stopping is really still a Problem i would try to learn that first, before going into public anywhere :-)

It is not a problem now, I am speaking to prospective new riders and telling them they will probably crash the wheel quite a lot while learning to ride and to consider protecting their wheels for this learning phase. I personally don't crash anymore except in emergency situations and am considering removing the padding from my wheels.

I suggest skipping learning to mount/unmount until after you can ride without support for at least maybe 100 meters or so before trying to learn to mount. I just feel like in order of difficulty these things are out of order. Mounting before you can even go forward unassisted for more than a few meters seems like a difficult task. It is also more emotionally satisfying to be able to ride around a bit rather than get stuck on trying to mount before trying to go forward. Same with dismounting, there is no reason to learn this until the end because you can't really dismount until you can ride forwards for some distance in a controlled manner.

Edited by electricpen
answered question about mounting.
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12 hours ago, electricpen said:

As some of you know I have spent the last 5 days learning to ride EUCs for the first time. I chronicled my progress here. I want to summarize some of my thoughts about my experiences here in the general forum as I see there are at least 3 new riders waiting for wheels, I think at least two of them are getting the same one I learned on - a KS 16s. I will try not to repeat too much stuff that is covered in the riding mechanics sticky.

1) I did a lot of inline skating, snowboarding, martial arts, etc. I still fell all over the place when I first started. But when it got better, it got better really fast. I went from being able to go 1-2 meters before falling on day 1, to 5- 10 meters day 2, and then hundreds/thousands of meters day 3. By day 5 I could ride for infinite amounts of time without falling over and have decent control over the wheel in most situations. Struggling through the first couple days was frustrating but it was worth it.

2) Personally, I only fell once in the last 5 days and maybe 60-70 km of distance covered as a completely new rider. My wheel fell a lot though. I always was able to jump clear and stay on my feet. I learned in a parking lot that had cars in it. Ideally, when you jump off the wheel you would step off the backside so the wheel doesn't run into you. Unfortunately for me since I didn't want the wheel to hit anyone's car and I decided early on I didn't like the strap that meant I had to kick the wheel or put my leg in front of it to block it to stop it from hitting cars sometimes. Just today I had to jump off my wheel and block it with my shin to stop it from hitting a small child on a scooter who decided to dash right in front of me without warning after staying in one place for at least 15-30 seconds as I approached them. The mother apologized profusely but I guess all that practice kicking the wheel down so it doesn't spin off and hit stuff paid off. Would have been awful if it ran into the kid probably. This is a more painful way of dealing with it than a strap - but I don't have any nerve endings in my shins anymore from Taekwondo so thats a plus I suppose. If you find your legs getting beat up maybe wear shin guards and face them in the direction you are getting hit (most people turn them towards the wheel on the insides of their legs).

IMG_20170813_173117.thumb.jpg.aa35063c3aa97bb131d8a55052847a31.jpg

3) Since your wheel is going to fall a lot regardless of whether you do or not, if you care about the cosmetic appearance of the wheel you probably should pad it. I followed some advice from @Hunka Hunka Burning Love and wrapped it with carpet padding and duct tape. Everything that is covered is 100% unscathed. I didn't cover the bottom of the pedals or the handle though and both of those have some scuffs but I don't really care *that* much. For my ninebot I covered the handle also but I was too lazy to cover the KS handle when I knew I would need to make a cutout for the button to extend the trolly and I was too lazy.

IMG_20170810_155634.thumb.jpg.14a1cbc181258955e257ce456ae65f6d.jpg

4) If possible you probably want something covering your fingers. It is hard to wear gloves under wristguards however but since I didn't really do much falling I actually had my fingers get more beat up than anything else because of all the grabbing and holding for a concrete wall I did to try to stay balanced initially. Grabbing a rough brick or concrete wall while falling down over and over again for a few hours is definitely going to chafe to say the least. I'd still choose wristguards over gloves just because friction burn heals faster than a broken wrist but I could see an argument the other way too. You're guaranteed to get beat up hands in the first day or two, falling badly enough to break a wrist is probably unlikely unless you completely eat it frequently and fall down a lot.

5) As @meepmeepmayer frequently advised me, sometimes you just need to wait. I made big jumps in ability from just taking a break from it for a bit and going back later. I practiced twice a day for the last 5 days, once in the morning or early afternoon and then once late at night before I slept.

6) I wore heavy boots to protect my ankles from getting beat up by the wheel, both from squeezing the wheel too hard trying to force it to balance as is common when starting, and also from jumping off it. Sometimes a pedal would clip one ankle when I jumped off or fell and the extra support is also nice since I probably would have sprained my ankle on day 3 or so if I hadn't been wearing the boots.

7) All the beginner videos present the following drills, usually in this order: Ride along a wall for support (or with a friend). Ride from pole to pole. Learn to mount by kick-pushing and getting your kickoff foot onto the wheel as you are moving forward. Learn to go straight without support. Learn to turn in circles. Learn to stop. I would suggest skipping the learning to mount part. Just use a wall or whatever to get situated on the wheel and try to go away from the wall as long as you can stay on the wheel. Learn to mount later.

8) Don't get discouraged! Everyone can probably learn this eventually, some faster than others, but it takes a bit of adjusting to. If a practice session is not going well or you are starting to do worse or get tired, just stop. Take a break and come back to it later. Sometimes when you come back later you will suddenly be able to do the thing that was frustrating you earlier.

Anyways, good luck and if you have any questions or whatever about what I did, just post in this thread and I'll try to answer them.

Thanks Electricpen, I enjoyed that and I think it will help me a lot.

Regards.  Ken

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Really nice summary! The "learn to mount later" tip is a good alternative option. I did this, I did not "practice" or "learn" stuff, just went on rides any way I could, and then you learn it when you need it;)

On 14.8.2017 at 11:18 AM, ir_fuel said:

I just don't understand the "I don't want a strap so I will just go and hurt myself" mentality. But hey, whatever floats your boat :) 

Do you want to spinning, emergency-accelerating 20kg weight with sharp, hard corners tethered to you while you try to regain your own balance and try not to fall over the thing? Some people do not:)

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Tethered? I have it in my hand. And it's not spinning and emergency accelerating when I lift it up. Nor will it slam into other people/cars or cause accidents.

It's indeed better to learn to fall off in front of it so it hits you every time as to not get it into a collision with someone else. Now where is the logic in that? 

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On 14/08/2017 at 3:19 AM, electricpen said:

7) All the beginner videos present the following drills, usually in this order: Ride along a wall for support (or with a friend). Ride from pole to pole. Learn to mount by kick-pushing and getting your kickoff foot onto the wheel as you are moving forward. Learn to go straight without support. Learn to turn in circles. Learn to stop. I would suggest skipping the learning to mount part. Just use a wall or whatever to get situated on the wheel and try to go away from the wall as long as you can stay on the wheel. Learn to mount later.

I agree, kick-pushing is too difficult at this stage, at least it was for me. The jump-mount is IMHO much easier and can be done even before to start learning circles. I would probably put learning to stop also before learning to circle :ph34r:. In any case, there is lots of parallel learning to be done anyways.

On 14/08/2017 at 3:19 AM, electricpen said:

a small child on a scooter who decided to dash right in front of me without warning after staying in one place for at least 15-30 seconds as I approached them

Always good to remember that this is what small children are supposed to do. They are supposed to be unpredictable and it remains our responsibility to deal with it. 

Edited by Mono
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18 minutes ago, Mono said:

I agree, kick-pushing is too difficult at this stage, at least it was for me.

I swear to God, I'm pretty sure it took me like a YEAR to be able to comfortably kick-mount/kick-push. Not a year of trying to do it, but certainly a year before i naturally felt myself wanting to do it and being able to pull it off 100%. It's weird the things that take a long time!

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In case anyone was wondering about the effectiveness of the carpet-padding that I used to pad the wheels - I took the padding off the ninebot which is very glossy and there isn't a single scratch on the case even though I've dropped it at speed a few times. It looks brand new. I took the covers off because I received the official pads from ninebot and I'm going to put them on and see how well they work...

Picture with new pads:

IMG_20170815_130109.thumb.jpg.2cd12f6372747559941b3535e4b92e23.jpg

Edited by electricpen
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19 hours ago, Paddylaz said:

I swear to God, I'm pretty sure it took me like a YEAR to be able to comfortably kick-mount/kick-push. Not a year of trying to do it, but certainly a year before i naturally felt myself wanting to do it and being able to pull it off 100%. It's weird the things that take a long time!

What is kick-push? Is it starting as if you are riding a skateboard?

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1 hour ago, ir_fuel said:

What is kick-push? Is it starting as if you are riding a skateboard?

Yeah! When you jump on with your foot after having already pushed off with your other already-mounted foot. 

(As opposed to jumping on to a completely motionless euc with both feet and then moving from a standstill)

Edited by Paddylaz
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