Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Taylor Wright-Sanson

Activities? I was on the diving team, but our season just finished. Now that it’s getting warm out, I’m starting to unicycle with all the “free time” I have. I work for The Wire. I do graphic work for them and manage their web site. I also make web sites for people. I work in Tech support and I cater for Aramark here at Wheaton.

On unicycling:
I first learned to ride a unicycle when I was about 12 years old. I got one for Christmas. Since there was a ton of snow outside, I learned how to ride in my kitchen. I would hold on to the counters until I felt steady enough to let go. It took about two weeks of practice to learn to ride straight without holding on to anything.

After I learned how to ride, I put the unicycle away. I would take it out when guests came over and show them, if they asked. But it wasn’t until I saw a video (a year or so later) of some guy doing tricks on a unicycle, that I got interested. After I watched the video, I immediately went and got my unicycle and began trying several of the tricks I saw. I picked up a few fairly quickly and I haven’t stopped since. So, I’ve now been riding seriously for about six years.

Balancing unicycling and academics: In a perfect world, I would juggle the two evenly (‘scuse the pun). But with five classes, two jobs and up until a week ago diving practice every day, unicycling took a backseat for a few months. But now that diving is over, I try to unicycle for an hour or more a day. Granted that doesn’t always happen, but I do my best.

5 steps to riding a unicycle:

  1. Next to a wall, adjust your pedals so they are in a horizontal position and put the seat between your legs.
  2. With one hand on the wall and one out for balance, put your foot on the pedal closest to you.
  3. Put your weight on that pedal and be ready to catch the other one with your other foot (otherwise it will hit your shin…)
  4. Adjust your weight so you are comfortable on the seat (it’s not as bad as it looks, trust me. It should feel like you’re sitting on a bicycle seat if you’re sitting on it correctly).
  5. Once you feel comfortable, sit up straight, lean slightly forward and begin pedaling. Use the wall to steady yourself with only one hand, use the other for balance. When you’re ready, let go of the wall and see how far you can go.

Note: You will fall. But don’t worry, if you keep practicing you will have it down in no time. Oh, and did I say practice?

If you ever see me practicing feel free to come over and say hi. I might not hear you the first time because I listen to loud music while I practice, but maybe after you get my attention you’ll ask to try? Go ahead, you’re welcome to.

And don’t forget to check out my videos online!