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Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?



 
 
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  #11  
Old September 24th 08, 12:47 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
sp4rky-m4rky
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


vanpaun wrote:
This summer I did alot of Muni/trials. I have High Cholesterol, and
unicycling caused a Major drop. Would have been even moreso if I
unicycled instead of went to a computer camp. Unicycling also has a
Mental health aspect, when I muni I'm so focused, my problems slip
away!




You have high cholesterol at 14 what have you parents been
feeding you on? or do you have an illness


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  #12  
Old September 24th 08, 03:59 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
boisei
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


I use distance unicycling as cross training for ultramarathon running.
Adding this cross training gave me my best year of race performances
yet. This doesn't necessarily imply anything special about unicycling,
although I think it has some unique qualities that I'll touch on next,
but it does show that it is effective cross training for distance
running. Supplementing miles run with miles on a unicycle, and even
replacing many miles of running with miles riding, resulted in improved
foot race performance.

So distance unicycling is effective for cross training as a runner.
Part of my improvement can be attributed to just being motivated to get
out and ride more often than I'm motivated to run alone. It's effective
training, and I train more often, and so I see improved results. But I
think that unicycling also has some advantages above just being
effective training. For example, like a bicycle in works the major
muscle groups involved in running, but unlike a bicycle it also gives a
core workout and involves active balance, both of which improve running
performance. As an ultramarathon runner, I train at a fairly low heart
rate, and in general this is better approximated by riding my unicycle
than my bicycle. My unicycle speed is limited by balance rather than
cardiovascular or muscular fitness, whereas my bicycle speed is limited
only by how hard I can push on the pedals. My every bicycle ride
becomes a speed workout, an important supplement to lots of miles at my
target heart rate, but not where I want to be every day.

I am trained as a running coach, but this experience is just an n-of-1
experiment as I try to fit enough training into a busy life to improve
in my races before my age starts moving my performances in the other
direction.

Hope that helps,
Z


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  #13  
Old September 24th 08, 05:34 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
blueharmony
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


It's amazing how much work your deltoids get unicycling! The workout
from the waist down is obvious but just try holding your arms out
horizontal and waving them around for a couple of hours, or try doing
standard skills without moving your arms.


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  #14  
Old September 24th 08, 07:40 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
Conrad.Nguyen
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


Unicycling is decent exercise, but it depends on what you do (trials,
MUni, Distance, etc.). If you're looking for better fitness, your time
would be better spent running, biking, or lifting weights. If you want
to get better at unicyling, unicycle.


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  #15  
Old September 24th 08, 07:41 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
harper
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


There are definitely health benefits. If you are unicycling you are
still alive.


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  #16  
Old September 24th 08, 07:48 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
MuniAddict
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


Conrad.Nguyen wrote:
Unicycling is decent exercise, but it depends on what you do (trials,
MUni, Distance, etc.). If you're looking for _better_ fitness, your
time would be better spent running, _biking_, or lifting weights. If
you want to get better at unicyling, unicycle.


I think mile for mile, MUni is a superior form of exercise than biking,
which gives the rider the opportunity to just sit there and coast down
steep hills, more than _15_ gears to help them climb, handlebars to
rest, no constant attention and focus on acute balance requirements,
and so on. While running can be a good way to get fit, it's also much
harder on the body, especially the knees and spine, plus the fact that
you're not carrying the extra weight (14-22lbs depending on uni and
with or without backpack) of a MUni as you go. And lifting weights does
SQUAT (Pun intended) for aerobic fitness. I MUni 5-7 days a week and
have found it to be the best overall way to get and stay fit.


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  #17  
Old September 24th 08, 08:56 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
Conrad.Nguyen
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


Mile per mile maybe, but hour per hour I'd have to disagree. It really
depends on the person though. Potential for better exercise goes to
biking rather than unicycling.

Running shouldn't be that hard on your knees or spine if you have
correct form. You will get a lot more fit running than MUniing for the
same amount of time, assuming you run and don't jog.

Lifting weights does nothing for aerobic, but it doesn't mean nobody
should lift weights. Lifting weights builds muscle which burns calories
even after you're done lifting. So if you want improved fitness, lifting
weights should be included in your overall workout plan.

I understand that you've had success with unicycling and losing weight,
which I think is awesome. If I could keep my fitness just unicycling I
would, but for time purposes running does so much more.

Core strength exercises (like crunches or planks) will do more for core
strength than just unicycling in less time.

Perhaps a better reason that unicycling is a good exercise (boisei
touched on this a little) is that it's fun. The best training gear/plan
in the world won't get you fit, getting out and exercising will.


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  #18  
Old September 24th 08, 09:18 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
MuniAddict
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


Conrad.Nguyen wrote:
Mile per mile maybe, but hour per hour I'd have to disagree. It really
depends on the person though. Potential for better exercise goes to
biking rather than unicycling.

Running shouldn't be that hard on your knees or spine if you have
correct form. You will get a lot more fit running than MUniing for the
same amount of time, assuming you run and don't jog.

Lifting weights does nothing for aerobic, but it doesn't mean nobody
should lift weights. Lifting weights builds muscle which burns calories
even after you're done lifting. So if you want improved fitness, lifting
weights should be included in your overall workout plan.

I understand that you've had success with unicycling and losing weight,
which I think is awesome. If I could keep my fitness just unicycling I
would, but for time purposes running does so much more.

Core strength exercises (like crunches or planks) will do more for core
strength than just unicycling in less time.

Perhaps a better reason that unicycling is a good exercise (boisei
touched on this a little) is that it's fun. The best training gear/plan
in the world won't get you fit, getting out and exercising will.


Muni has done far more than just help me lose weight; it has totally
transformed my body & soul to the extent that nothing ever has. I used
to be an avid runner, doing marathons and so on, but MUni is an
all-encompassing, and yes, FUN way to get in the best shape of your
life! But I guess we'll just have to agree to disagree, lol. There is
just no way that biking is anywhere near as effective as MUni-ing, mile
for mile, imo. Low, LOW gears and coasting and no real focus on
balance and/or hopping, gapping, etc., makes biking a walk in the park
by comparison.


--
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  #19  
Old September 24th 08, 10:10 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
vanpaun
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


sp4rky-m4rky wrote:
You have high cholesterol at 14 what have you parents been feeding
you on? or do you have an illness



I eat really healthy, 3 mcdonalds cheese burgers a day! jkjk, i am a
vegetarian. its just heredity. i keep it pretty in check, about 160
ldl, at the moment. hdl is at 40. so not to bad, just got to keep an
eye out.


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  #20  
Old September 24th 08, 10:14 PM posted to rec.sport.unicycling
skilewis74
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Default Help! Are there health benefits to unicycling?


For me while riding challenging terrain, I burn twice the energy as I
would by bike for the same amount of time. Since I can only ride about
half as fast as I can bike, I burn nearly 4X as much energy on the uni
vs. a bike, mile for mile.

If I'm looking for the maximum benefit for my time it'd be best to do
some strength training, cardio, and stretching. Unicycling, swimming,
rock climbing and wresling give me the best workouts of the sports I've
tried (but rock climbing and wresling are hard to do constantly, so the
workout is often less).


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