More and more people are using their Onewheel as a last mile solution in the big city. The term “Last Mile Solution” refers to the last leg of a journey that takes a person from a travel hub like a bus or subway station to their final destination, be it work or home.
I’m seeing more people ditching their cars and using electric rideables like the Onewheels, electric scooters, electric skateboards, and electric unicycles as their last mile solution.
Lots of people enjoy riding Onewheels in cities because it’s just a great way to explore. There is so much cool stuff to see densely packed in big cities that makes urban riding a blast.
Whatever your reason for riding your Onewheel in the big city, there’s one thing for sure, when done properly, it can be a really fun time.
Here are my tips for riding your Onewheel in the city:
- Be confident and comfortable on the Onewheel: There’s an urge to jump on your Onewheel and to start shredding the streets like Slydog. Don’t start riding in traffic too soon. Slydog didn’t start riding in the streets until he had a ton of experience and miles under his belt.
- Wear safety gear: Are you sick of me harping on this yet? Good. That means I’m doing a good job.
- Be predictable: Predictable riding lets drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists know what to expect. If you ride erratically, swerving unexpectedly into traffic, it’s hard for drivers to know what to expect from you.
- Never leave your Onewheel unattended and/or Bring a lock: This is just a general security tip. I’ve made a more detailed video in the past. I like having a light lock with me like the TiGr Lock so I can secure my Onewheel when I’m in public and I can’t give the Onewheel my full attention. For example, if I’m at the library, I’ll lock up the Onewheel next to me just in case nature calls and I need to step away for a brief moment.
- Always be alert when riding: Be on the lookout for cars, pedestrians, cyclists, potholes, and dogs. Never let your guard down.
- Prepare for the unexpected: What do I mean when I say unexpected? Here are some unexpected things that have caught me off guard while on my Onewheel.
- Random car doors swinging out
- Darting children
- Lunging dogs
- Rude cyclists
- Panhandling fishermen (Watch my video below to see what this is all about)
- Be seen: Drivers hit things they don’t see. Be visible, especially at night. Wear reflective clothing and use a flashlight when appropriate.
- Assume drivers don’t see you: You’ve done everything you can to be seen, now the next part is to assume no one sees you. That is just safe riding. When crossing intersections I try to make it a point to make eye contact with drivers, smile, and even wave before going on my way. It leaves a good vibe between me and the driver and also ensures that I am seen.
- Save the Temporary rails voice bit. Bring a charger: You may plan on just going for a short ride, but the Onewheel will beg you to take the long way, it will tease you to take unexpected turns, and it will plead with you to go explore. Bring a charger so you don’t get stranded. There are plenty of outlets in the big city to charge up. My favorites include:
- Fast food places
- Coffee shops
- Book stores
- Department stores
- What’s your favorite public place to charge? Share it with us in the comments below
- Limit distractions: Get off the phone, take off the headphones, be aware of your surroundings and be in the moment. Especially if you are in potentially dangerous situations in the city.
- Don’t hang out in driver blind spots: This is a continuation of being seen. Don’t hang out in driver blind spots… either zip past slow moving cars or slow down so that cars can pass you. Hanging out in blind spots puts you at risk for getting cut off when drivers aggressively change lanes.
- Be respectful and responsible: Don’t give Onewheelers a bad name. Obey traffic rules. Smile and wave to gawkers. Take a moment to say hi and answer questions to curious onlookers if you have time.
- Don’t ride in busy traffic while intoxicated: Things like alcohol dulls the senses and slows reaction time, both of which are important and needed when wheeling around in city traffic.
- Bring a first aid kit: Getting injured sucks. Bleeding all over the place while riding home or to work sucks even more. Having a simple first aid kit to clean up lacerations and abrasions will come in handy. Trust me. I know.
- Plan your route: Use Google Maps and set your route as a biker. Bike friendly routes are probably the most Onewheel friendly in my experience.
- Explore and have fun: See something interesting? Go check it out. The Onewheel is not about the destination, it’s about the journey… enjoy it. Carve and have fun!
If you are a big city Onewheeler share your riding tips in the comments below.