Best Unicycles 2017

Last update December 30, 2016
If you aspire to get into cycling but live in an urban area, consider getting a unicycle - a one-wheeled vehicle that has broken

the bonds of the circus and has become an often sight at parks, on and off roads. Learn with us how to choose the best model and impress everyone with a new trick!

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BEST 2017
PROS
CONS
OUR VERDICT
WHEEL DIAMETER / TIRE
WHEEL FEATURES
FRAME
TYPE
SEAT POST CLAMP
MAXIMUM LOAD
WEIGHT
SEAT-PEDAL DISTANCE
WARRANTY
 
PROS
Sealed bearing can withstand heavy loads. Assembling and riding this unicycle is a piece of cake. Cushioned adjustable seat for enhanced comfort of use.
CONS
Adjusting a seat post's clamp with a wrench takes longer than with the eccentric type. However, it's considered to be more secure.
OUR VERDICT
Deluxe Unicycle is an ultimate choice for a novice. But even experienced users may find its catchy look very appropriate for small performances indoors or in the parks.
detailed parameters
WHEEL DIAMETER / TIRE
20" / Slick
WHEEL FEATURES
Sealed bearings, Cotterless crank arms, Chrome-coated cranks
FRAME
Rounded / Chrome-plated steel
TYPE
Freestyle
SEAT POST CLAMP
Screw clamp
MAXIMUM LOAD
Up to 160 lbs
WEIGHT
14 lbs
SEAT-PEDAL DISTANCE
24" - 32"
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-day returns policy
PROS
Double-wall aluminum rim is more durable than one-wall rim.
CONS
Might not be suitable for tall people.
OUR VERDICT
This is a nice and compact starter model. Its ultra-wide tire provides an improved stability that is so important in the learning process or for performing standing tricks.
detailed parameters
WHEEL DIAMETER / TIRE
16" / Semi-slick
WHEEL FEATURES
Aluminum rim with double wall, Width - 2.125"
FRAME
Rounded / Chrome-plated steel
TYPE
Freestyle
SEAT POST CLAMP
Eccentric clamp
MAXIMUM LOAD
Up to 180 lbs
WEIGHT
17 lbs
SEAT-PEDAL DISTANCE
21" - 29"
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-day returns policy
PROS
Easy to make small jumps with it thanks to the light weight.
CONS
The seat bolt is a bit tough to tighten up.
OUR VERDICT
Fun unicycle is a very affordable model for learners and regular riders. Excellent option if you want a quality mobile vehicle with a great look for everyday use.
detailed parameters
WHEEL DIAMETER / TIRE
20" / Slick
WHEEL FEATURES
Aluminum rim, Cartridge bearings, Kenda KIKZUMBUT tire, Width - 1.95"
FRAME
Rounded / Chrome-plated steel
TYPE
Freestyle
SEAT POST CLAMP
Eccentric clamp
MAXIMUM LOAD
Up to 145 lbs
WEIGHT
11.6 lbs
SEAT-PEDAL DISTANCE
24" - 32"
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-day returns policy
PROS
Heavy bearing ensures easy movement capabilities over grass and flat fields. Available in different color patterns.
CONS
More secure seat post clamp would be welcomed.
OUR VERDICT
AW 18" is suitable for both beginners and professionals. You can also learn some advanced stunts and tricks with it. Knobby tires give excellent traction off-roads too.
detailed parameters
WHEEL DIAMETER / TIRE
18" / Knobby
WHEEL FEATURES
Aluminum rim, Manganese steel mute bearing, Width - 1.75"
FRAME
Flat / Manganese steel with a powder coating
TYPE
Mountain, Freestyle
SEAT POST CLAMP
Eccentric clamp
MAXIMUM LOAD
Up to 180 lbs
WEIGHT
17 lbs
SEAT-PEDAL DISTANCE
22" - 30"
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-day returns policy
PROS
The maximum height adjustment from the floor up to the maximum point of the saddle is up to 69". With its 24" wheel, it's easy to accelerate and keep up a high speed.
CONS
This model might not be suitable for short people or kids.
OUR VERDICT
A great option for those who want a unicycle for everyday use. You can also go on pleasant trips on it or perform some complex stunts. Its knobby mountain tire is stable on any ground.
detailed parameters
WHEEL DIAMETER / TIRE
24" / Knobby
WHEEL FEATURES
Aluminum rim, Manganese steel mute bearing, Width - 1.75"
FRAME
Flat / Manganese steel with a powder coating
TYPE
Mountain, Freestyle
SEAT POST CLAMP
Eccentric clamp
MAXIMUM LOAD
Up to 154 lbs
WEIGHT
13 lbs
SEAT-PEDAL DISTANCE
27" - 33"
WARRANTY
Amazon's 30-day returns policy

What Is It

As a small kid, what was your opinion on a circus? Maybe, you were amazed by equilibrists on the rope, breathtaking somersaults under the dome or trained wild animals obediently jumping over the obstacles. Or maybe, you have found clowns performances the best. Anyway, the unicycles were closely associated with acrobats at circuses and carnivals. But step by step, it is slowly changing into an awesome tool for recreational activities. Now, you can often meet people in parks riding this mono-wheeled vehicle.

A unicycle consists of one wheel, 2 pedals, a seat and a fork-type frame that connects them all together. You ride it by keeping a balance and cycling pedals forward or backward. Unlike bicycles, standard unicycles don't have a handlebar or brakes. You change the direction by shifting your weight from side to side. In order to stop, you either hold the pedals still with your feet or simply jump off it. Of course, you can buy an additional hand brake module where the handle is placed right below the seat.

For this review, we've studied what features a unicycle does have to offer and tried to compile the results in an unfussy guide with the best picks for those who have just started or are yet to learn the astonishing skills of unicycling.

We strongly advise buying a helmet and elbow pads to make the learning process safer. So, don't forget to check out our review on the Best Bike Helmets as well.

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What To Look For

First of all, look at a unicycle's Type. This characteristic has a lot in common with bicycles. The standard models have a direct drive - it has no chain between the pedal cranks and a wheel's axis. That's the starter type and we advise you start with direct drive models. Here are the most categories with direct drive control:

  • Freestyle unicycles are designed for riding on flat surfaces like roads, pavements, etc. They come with a slick or semi-slick tire.
  • Trial models are usually more durable than the others. They need to withstand a rider's weight while he performs stunts like jumping over obstacles, for example. They have pretty wide tires to help balance in one place.
  • Mountain unicycles, just like mountain bikes, feature a wide tire with knobs and have been designed for off-roads racing.
  • Torque models are for covering large distances. As a rule, the diameter of their wheel is larger than 26".

If you want to learn the basics of riding then choose any bike with 16" - 24"wheel diameter. However, the riding style may vary in accordance with the Wheel Size. In general, the smaller diameters with thinner tires are more maneuverable, while larger wheels provide greater speed. For average-sized people, the 16" to 20" wheels will be just right. For kids, you might grab a vehicle with 12" - 16" wheels. But if you have long legs, you might want to get a model with a wheel bigger than 20". The easiest way to choose the right unicycle's height is to measure your inseam leg length and compare the result with the wheel and seat parameters. Remember, your leg should be almost straight when positioned on the bottom pedal while you are sitting on it.

Unicycle's Weight is crucial for the trial unicycles, as you have to jump high with it. But for other types - not so much, because when you have to carry it around, you can just tow it by the seat. Choose the frame strictly according to the Maximum Load. Some models may withstand more weight than showed in their datasheets, but better safe than sorry. Always grab the uni with the maximum load bigger than your weight if you want to perform tricks on it.

Don't forget about the Frame Shape. The top part of the fork that goes around the wheel is called the crown. Riders use it to put a leg on while performing some stunts. Its shape may be rounded or flat. 

Finally, there are many smaller features, including, but not necessarily limited to, the frame and rim materials, crank attachment types, the way of fastening the seat post to the frame, pedals or seat shape, etc. However, these parameters are not so imperative for the starters.

We've picked up 5 great looking models that have all the things needed for new users to get into unicycling or for a little more advanced riders to push their skills to the limit. Sit back, relax and enjoy our review of the following products.

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Review of Avenir 20"  Deluxe Unicycle

Avenir 20" Deluxe Unicycle

Avenir 20" Deluxe Unicycle

Adjusting Personal Comfort

Without a doubt, riding a monocycle requires particular skills, like balancing and extra awareness on the road. Moreover, a unicycle is supposed to have a comfy seat in order to be easy to ride and control. Avenir Deluxe features exactly such conveniences. It has a soft-padded seat that can be adjusted both up-down and forward-backward. Obviously, this allows this unicycle to be used by people of different height and constitution. You wouldn't believe how often it fell on the ground during the training sessions, and one might think that the unicycle wouldn't survive such experience. Yet, most of the times it safely lands on the durable plastic bumpers in front or rear part of the seat. Therefore, we can readily recommend it for beginners. Those plastic bumpers are also designed to hold onto when you perform special tricks or simply ride on the road. Turned out, holding onto them with one hand adds more confidence, as it helps in controlling the direction and balancing on it. Try it yourself, and you'll understand what we mean.

Anyhow, on a picnic or any other similar event, everyone is encouraged to try out riding a unicycle at least once. Therefore, you will most probably have to adjust the seat height almost every time someone new tries it. Yet, this nuisance is resolved by having a small wrench. We want to add, that the screw clamp is believed to be one of the most secure ways of fastening the seat to the frame because you can't suddenly swipe it with a leg.

 

Review of Avenir 20"  Deluxe Unicycle

Want to Perform Tricks? No Problem!

Any experienced rider wants to show a trick, flip or spin when he gets on a bike. Despite being designed for beginners, this unicycle can withstand basic jumps over small obstacles, like when you have to jump from the road on the pavement. It has a strong frame, durable wheel-to-frame conjunction, and a sealed waterproof bearing. The Avenir unicycle is designed for people of up to 160 lbs in weight and features pedals with non-slip small knobs to prevent feet from sliding off. That's why it is an ultimate vehicle for beginners who want to master a unicycle riding and also learn some tricks to amuse their friends later on.

Avenir 20"  Deluxe Unicycle in the use

Common Attraction

Avenir is a brand that specializes in the bicycle products and accessories. What's interesting, it belongs to the Raleigh company, that was founded in 1885, USA, and is one of the oldest bikes manufacturers in the world.

That is why riding this unicycle on a sunny day, you will surely catch the eye of people around you with its classic look and sparkling chrome finish.

More Products to Consider

In case you are only getting to know the unicycle's riding technique, take a look at this classic bike helmet by ProRider. Remember: safety comes first!

And if you are really into it, consider getting this set of 3 juggling clubs by Juggle Dream. They are pretty durable, so you can learn how to juggle on the go without worrying that they may get broken if accidentally fall on the floor.


Avenir 20
Avenir 20" Deluxe Unicycle
 
Review of Fantasycart 16"  Unicycle with Skidproof Tire

Fantasycart 16" Unicycle with Skidproof Tire

Fantasycart 16" Unicycle with Skidproof Tire

Stable and Manoeuvrable

Lots of users noticed the advanced stability of the Fantasycart 16" on the road and during fancy riding. Some even reported the feeling that the unicycle grabs onto the roadway with its 2.125" wide semi-slick tire. The rustproof upper tube and the fork are made to last forever. The two-walled lightweight aluminum rim gives the feeling of a floating when you are cruising on it. Such rim is more enduring than one-walled type too.

Overall, this 16" unicycle proved to be more agile, easier to navigate than the models with larger wheels. Although this one is recommended for beginners, we are sure that more proficient freestylers may find it suitable for their needs too.

Review of Fantasycart 16"  Unicycle with Skidproof Tire

For Big and Small

Some might think, that unicycles with smaller wheels are designed for kids, just like the bicycles. Turned out, the unicycle's wheel size has little to do with a rider's age. Anyone can use a unicycle with different wheel sizes as long as the vehicle can hold their weight and has the appropriate distance from seat to pedal.

This Fantasycart has 16" wheel but can hold up to 180 lbs. An awesome result for a baby-size, right? It's pretty durable, so you can safely use this model to learn how to ride. What's more, even pros may find it suitable for them, because it can totally withstand basic and advanced tricks, jumping as well.

Fantasycart 16"  Unicycle with Skidproof Tire in the use

Advice for Beginners

Despite one-wheel design, anyone can learn to ride a unicycle, provided that they’ve got time and longing to do that. It does happen sometimes that one can start pedaling after a few minutes in a seat, but more often than not, confident riding requires some practice. So, if you’ve made your mind learn to ride, practice each day for at least half an hour during a week. Here are some tips how to make training more efficient:

  • Adjust the post according to your height. You need to be able to sit in the seat with your legs straight.
  • Place a unicycle in front of you. Hold it by the front part of the seat.
  • Adjust the pedals in a way that the one closer to you should be closer to the ground, too. Move the seat between your thighs.
  • Holding onto something for support, place one leg on the pedal that is close to you and shift your weight. Don't forget to hold the seat with the other hand.
  • When you step on the pedal, the seat should move upward while the wheel rolls right under you and literally self-mounts you on itself.
  • With the help of the support try cycling the pedals. You may ask a friend to lend you a hand or ride along a wall or a fence.

Keep training and be patient. Remember, Rome wasn't built in a day. A 15-30 minutes session is enough. In a week or two, you will surely see noticeable results.

More Products to Consider

We'd like to recommend you this set of child pads and gloves by Schwinn. Great for unicycling or roller-skating.

Additional Info

User Manual


Fantasycart 16
Fantasycart 16" Unicycle with Skidproof Tire
 
Review of Fun Chrome 20"  Unicycle with Alloy Rim

Fun Chrome 20" Unicycle with Alloy Rim

Fun Chrome 20" Unicycle with Alloy Rim

For Expert Riders

As you might have guessed, this Fun unicycle features a 20" wheel with a 1.95" tire, that will be a great choice for beginners. It is designed for roads and you can even try racing on it. At 11.6 lbs. weight, we can also recommend it for children, but adults may ride this model as well - simply adjust the seat post to your height and hop on. We also liked the look of this unicycle: chromed steel is a perfect match with a black seat and gray plastic bumpers. BMX-style pedals are wide enough to rest feet on them comfortably. Simply put, it has all the necessary features to learn the basics of unicycling without worrying about safety.

Review of Fun Chrome 20"  Unicycle with Alloy Rim

Tire Up!

Fun 20" unicycle boasts the tire by world-renowned Taiwan company Kenda Tires. It has a slick tread pattern that makes it suitable for riding a road or indoors if you are going to perform on a stage. The Kenda company has been manufacturing rubber products for more than half a century, creating tires for cars, bicycles, motorbikes and ATVs. Its factories are based in China, Vietnam and, of course, Taiwan. It is a sponsor of several racing cycling teams. Therefore, with this product you are getting an up-market quality rubber tire at a pretty reasonable price.

Fun Chrome 20"  Unicycle with Alloy Rim in the use

Did You Know?

Riding a unicycle is actually safer than a bike. What happens, when the front wheel of a bicycle drops in a thank-you-ma'am at a great speed? That's right, the rider is hurled over the handlebar and the bike flies in its wake. In the same situation, the one-wheeler just turns over, while the driver hops off the seat, makes a few steps by its own momentum, and then just stops. Moreover, you don't have to obtain special skills to do so, as the walking comes off naturally because you are riding a unicycle half-standing.

That's why, statistically, a number of serious injuries on a unicycle is a lot rarer than on a bike.

More Products to Consider

Since most models in this review are best suited for new riders, we continue to remind you about safety measures. You can readily use knee pads for roller skating or bike helmets. But if you have just started training in a cold season, grab this snowboard and bike helmet by TraverseSport to keep your head warm.


Fun Chrome 20
Fun Chrome 20" Unicycle with Alloy Rim
 
Review of AW 18"  Unicycle

AW 18" Unicycle

AW 18" Unicycle

Ride Like Professional!

AW unicycle is designed for the riders who aim for more. Besides learning the basics of riding, you can also master the freestyle tricks or even mountain riding. Buy this model if you want to amuse your friends and family with extreme stunts in the future. The fork has a flat top crown to place a foot on. Moreover, it has the special bright-colored bumper with two positions to grab - excellent for performing a jump or hold onto while going on a bumpy road.

By the way, AW unicycle is available in a variety of colors - choose the one that is best suitable to your personality.

Review of AW 18"  Unicycle

High Pressure

The key feature here is the tire. Its butyl tube can withstand up to 6 times higher pressure when compared with the same-sized common rubber tubes. This signifies that you will have to reinflate less frequently as well. Typically, it takes more time to wear out such tube too. That's why we can generally recommend this model and the butyl tires for multi-seasonal riding.

The 2.125" wide knobby tire is perfect for snowy roads or cross-country. You can find the same pattern on mountain bikes too. Therefore, you can easily turn off the road into a forest or go downhill on it.

This unicycle will be a great start to extreme unicycle riding and for learning the tricks and stunts on the road.

AW 18"  Unicycle in the use

Stay Fit

Cycling is a great way to stay fit. With a mono-wheeler, you train almost every major muscle in your body and improve concentration. Also, riding a unicycle trains your back. That's why riders usually have such a nice posture. Just like any other cardio, you burn calories, reduce the risk of a heart disease and overall increase endurance simply by riding it.

More Products to Consider

Obviously, cross-country features a very rugged terrain. Going up and down the hills may be pretty tiresome. In order to protect your skin, we advise wearing padded clothes. Take a look at these bicycle underpants by Xcellent Global. Choose your size and enjoy a comfortable riding even at a long distance.


AW 18
AW 18" Unicycle
 
Review of Generic 24"  Unicycle

Generic 24" Unicycle

Generic 24" Unicycle

Go to Extremes

When going downhill riding a unicycle on a mountain-like rugged terrain, you get all fired up. Endorphin and serotonin to the max! That awesome feeling of excitement that is so typical for extreme sports can be fully obtained with the Generic unicycle. Its knobby tire is designed for outdoor riding on and off roads. We were gratified with how fast you can reach a great speed with its 24" wheel. Moreover, you can quickly change the moving direction on it with its comparatively thin 1.75" tire, gaining additional mobility right where you need it.

Review of Generic 24"  Unicycle

Will It Bend?

This model suits both teens and adults with up to 33" of inseam legs measurements. The fork crown is flat - handy for performing tricks and stunts. The frame itself is made of mangalloy, also known as a manganese steel, that is considered to be a pretty durable material. For instance, you can't simply bend it or cut. It requires special, hardened tools with a diamond coating or extremely sturdy drill to even make a hole in it. Therefore, manganese steel is used in a mining industry, but can also be found in mountain bike frames as well.

Generic 24"  Unicycle in the use

Universally Applicable

Let's be honest, the first thought people get when they hear the word Unicycle is a circus. But nowadays you can meet people with unicycles at skateparks training and performing stunts along with roller skaters and skateboarders. An aggressive trial unicycling is gradually becoming more popular. In the trials, you have to pass the obstacle course in an urban territory. However, unicycling is still a nice way to stay fit and spend a relaxing day in the park, drawing the attention of people passing by with the uncommon sight. Choose whatever activity you like, but know that you can do almost any of those, on this Generic unicycle. 

Let's see: a knobbed tire for rugged terrain, a large wheel for speeding up and racing, a thin tire for quick turnaround, a flat crown top and sturdy bumpers with a stiffening rib at the front bumper that also serves as an additional handle. What's more to ask?

Only one thing is left to point out: this Generic unicycle is recommended for tall people. Check out, if your inseams fit. If yes, then you can readily grab it and start cycling.

More Products to Consider

If you don't want to wear fancy underpants, you might consider getting this set of 2 silicone seat pads by PinWheel. They have an adhesive layer on one side to firmly stick to the seat.

Here's also a Razor helmet that is available in a variety of colors. Choose the one you like, if you need additional protection.

Generic 24"  Unicycle application

Generic 24
Generic 24" Unicycle
 

SOURCES:

1. UnicycleWikipedia. September 12, 2016.

2. UnicycleEncyclopedia. 2002.

3. The Unicyclopedia/HardwareWikibooks. March 16, 2014.

4. Bicycle TireWikipedia. July 7, 2016.

5. UnicycleWikia. November 2, 2009.

6. How to Ride and Mount a Unicycle, wikiHow. 2015.

7. How to Measure Your Inseam, wikiHow. September 8, 2016.

8. Kris Holm The Wonderful World of Mountain Unicycling, Outside. July 30, 2012.

9. Patrick Laurence Unicycle Buyer's Guide, EzineArticles. April 14, 2015.

10. Unicycles - One-Wheeled Fun, Kidzworld.

11. Steven Elbow Appeal of the Wheel, The Capital Times. October 1, 2014.

12. Amber Kelsey Why Ride a Unicycle?, LIVESTRONG. August 17, 2015.