Unicycles Vs Wheelchairs

Discussion in 'rec.sport.unicycling' started by Ottawa Dave, Dec 21, 2005.

  1. Ottawa Dave

    Ottawa Dave Guest

    The other day our unicycle club played a game of basketball against a
    local wheelchair team. We played four quarters and the final score was
    30 to 36, the wheelchair team takeing the win. Next to down hill muni
    this was the most fun I've ever had on a unicycle. The play was fast
    and felt well matched and every one seemed to have a good time. Some of
    our better riders could pick the ball up off the floor on the move,
    some thing the other team was not expecting.
    I would play wheelchair/unicycle basket ball again in a heartbeat and
    highly recomend it to others.
    I'll try and post some photos later.

    Thanks to Dr kaboom for organizing the event. :D


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  2. andycookuk

    andycookuk Guest

    COOL!

    I'd feel bad about beating disabled people, so in a way I'm glad you
    lost! har har har, sorry!
    -AndyC


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  3. s7ev0

    s7ev0 Guest

    Inspiring! I've had only a few minutes to think about this, but could
    this be the first mixed able/disabled sport where there is parity of
    access?

    Was there not a height difference that -should have -worked to the
    advantage of the unicyclists?

    Do they have a forum? I'd be interested to hear what they thought.


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  4. kington99

    kington99 Guest

    s7ev0 wrote:
    > could this be the first mixed able/disabled sport where there is parity
    > of access?
    >




    Pistol shooting. If you don't think it's a sport argue with the olympic
    committee, not me :)


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  5. tholub

    tholub Guest

    s7ev0 wrote:
    > Inspiring! I've had only a few minutes to think about this, but could
    > this be the first mixed able/disabled sport where there is parity of
    > access?
    >
    > Was there not a height difference that -should have -worked to the
    > advantage of the unicyclists?
    >
    > Do they have a forum? I'd be interested to hear what they thought.




    I've played a lot of unicycle basketball, and watched some wheelchair
    basketball, and I'd have to say that I don't think a wheelchair team
    should be able to beat a good unicycle team. The wheelchairs will
    have great difficulty defending passes or shots, and the unicycles are
    far more manuverable. Against an inexperienced team, the wheelchairs
    will have a shooting advantage, but I think that effect would disappear
    or at least be greatly reduced against a strong team.


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  6. anso

    anso Guest

    Our basketball uni association in Paris plays sometimes with
    wheelchairs, at least twice a year.

    The first time I've played, in 1999, I was afraid about falling on the
    wheelchair guys... And realized quickly they didn't care and rushed at
    me if they needed in order to get the ball
    AT the beginning, we used to play unicycles against wheelchairs, and
    because, as you said, Tholub, wheelchairs had difficulties defending
    passes or shots, we used to win.
    Now our friends in wheelchairs are very good (but I can't say we are
    inexperienced, our team play almost every week), some of them are part
    of the French basketball wheelchair team that goes to the Paralympic
    Games! So we decided to mix the teams and we have lots of fun.

    Our association has a rolling basket we use during parade, like that
    one, the Defistival which goal is to promote the meeting between
    handicaped persons and the general public.

    [image: http://543210.free.fr/photos/defistival/p9249943.jpg]

    Not many unis on the pic but I'm on the right, the uni in my hands

    An'So


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  7. ntappin

    ntappin Guest

    I agree that was a great game. I was amazed at how well we did
    considering it was the first game I believe we had played. I thought
    they were leading by 8 points though? I may be wrong though.


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  8. tholub

    tholub Guest

    anso wrote:
    >
    > Our association has a rolling basket we use during parade, like that
    > one, the Defistival which goal is to promote the meeting between
    > handicaped persons and the general public.
    >




    That's great, sounds like fun for all!


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  9. Ottawa Dave

    Ottawa Dave Guest

  10. mscalisi

    mscalisi Guest

  11. mscalisi

    mscalisi Guest

    We should try to find a team close to Berkeley. That would be TONS of
    fun. Do the guys in chairs have to dribble the ball down the court, or
    do they just carry it?

    Also, after seeing Murderball, I'm skeptical that unicycles are much
    more maneuverable.


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  12. Mikefule

    Mikefule Guest

    How nice to find a sport where people with a very unusual
    -ability-(unicyclists) can play on equal terms with people in
    wheelchairs. That a unicycle team can play against a wheelchair team
    is great. That someone should immediately think of mixing the teams is
    even better. Not all people in wheelchairs are helpless, as is shown
    by the people who do marathons in them and beat thousands of runners in
    the process.

    A friend of mine has a degenerative disease, and is now barely able to
    operate an electric wheelchair. His disease makes him unable to speak,
    and he can only communicate with nods of the head, grins, and by typing
    laboriously into a communicator machine. He will die in the next few
    years as his organs shut down.

    I can remember when he was much younger, he could beat all of us at
    armwrestling because he went everywhere on elbow crutches. A year or
    three ago, when he was a little more able, I raced him around a
    campsite - he in his electric wheelchair, me in his manual wheelchair.
    He won when I capsized in a rut. His hysterical laughter is a
    cherished memory.


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  13. anso

    anso Guest

    tholub wrote:
    > The wheelchairs will have great difficulty defending passes or shots,
    > and the unicycles are far more manuverable.




    I forgot to say :
    It is much easier for the wheelchairs to pick up the ball on the floor
    and I'm not sure the unis are more manuverable : we are not as stable
    as they are and the handicaped are really at ease in their wheelchairs,
    they don't use those just for fun (even if some of them can walk, and
    some are not even handicaped, they just like to play in wheelchairs
    with the handicaped persons).

    I don't really know who should beat the other ones but anyway it is
    much better to mix the teams.

    An'So


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  14. Ottawa Dave

    Ottawa Dave Guest

    Hi mscalisi,

    The folks in the chairs have to dribble the ball after every two
    pushes. The rules were the same as basket ball played on foot, except
    that if some one fell out of a chair or off a uni they were out of play
    untill they got back on there ride.

    Dave


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  15. drkaboom

    drkaboom Guest

    Dave,

    The final score was actually 38 to 30 - they schooled us but not so
    badly that we were embarrassed. Now that we know the rules we'll have
    to work on our scoring percentage per shots fired. We also have to work
    on defence, defence, defence. The wheelchairs ripped back their own end
    and were sitting there waiting for us after every one of their goals!

    I've spoken with the Ottawa-Carleton Wheelchair Sport Association
    (OCWSA) organizers and we'll be playing again in 2006. I'm sure now
    that we've shown the way lots of other unicycle-wheelchair exhibition
    games will be popping up around the country. We are working on the
    video of the game and as soon as it's ready we'll post it. The OCWSA
    would also like us to play against them in a 10 minute exhibition game
    during the half-time show at the Harlem Globetrotters game at the Corel
    Centre in April.

    Just a note - it is possible to ride a unicycle on stilts and we have
    the video to prove it. Sadly, I didn't have the skill level to stilt
    unicycle ride myself (three attempts - zero successful) but Devon and
    Thomas are both on record for having ridden my custom made six foot
    high (12" tire) uni while wearing my stilts - amazing!

    David (Dr. Kaboom)


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  16. drkaboom

    drkaboom Guest

    Ottawa Dave,

    Now look what you've done! I'll have to call Marc the Welder to have
    him put big wheels on two basketball nets so we can drag them through
    the city for parades. I'll have him work out a way to collapse them so
    we can stuff them in the van after we're done. It'll cost me a bundle
    but think of the fun we'll have playing street unicycle-wheelchair
    basketball.

    Marcy says she went easy on us in the game and that in the re-match the
    kid gloves come off and you better be wearing a cup.

    Dr. Kaboom.


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  17. ntappin

    ntappin Guest

    hey Dr. Kaboom, where do you get your welding done? Alcon welding?

    And do you have any idea when the next game will be?

    Thanks for getting all of this organized, I had a great time at the
    last game and I am really looking forward to the next game.


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  18. tholub

    tholub Guest

    anso wrote:
    > I forgot to say :
    > It is much easier for the wheelchairs to pick up the ball on the floor
    > and I'm not sure the unis are more manuverable : we are not as stable
    > as they are and the handicaped are really at ease in their wheelchairs,
    > they don't use those just for fun (even if some of them can walk, and
    > some are not even handicaped, they just like to play in wheelchairs
    > with the handicaped persons).
    >
    > I don't really know who should beat the other ones but anyway it is
    > much better to mix the teams.
    >
    > An'So




    Wheelchairs have a number of manuverability problems. For example,
    turning requires you to use one hand; turning sharply requires you to
    use two. So you can't ever shoot reliably while you're turning, and
    you can't turn sharply while handling the ball at all. Think about the
    circle inscribed by the outside wheel when a moving wheelchair user
    turns by stopping his inner wheel; the radius is the width of the wheel
    base, so the circle is something like two meters in diameter. That's
    an enormous turn compared to what a unicycle is capable of.
    Wheelchairs may be able to accelerate and decelerate faster than
    unicycles when the wheelchair user is not handling the ball, but when
    handling the ball the unicycle has a clear advantage.

    Neither steed can move laterally, but a unicycle with its tight turning
    radius can simulate lateral movement (critical on defense) much more
    easily than a wheelchair.

    And finally, the height advantage alone would be almost impossible to
    overcome. I don't see any way the wheelchairs could even attempt to
    defend against unicycles playing keep-away with the ball; the
    unicyclists sit half a meter higher, and wheelchairs can't jump. The
    unicycles will get almost all contested rebounds, will be in position
    to block most shots, and will have a clean look at the basket every
    time. Shortness will get the wheelchairs some steals off the dribble,
    and loose balls, but I don't see how that could overcome the
    disadvantages.

    Again, that's assuming an experienced unicycle team. It takes most
    people quite a while to be able to shoot reliably on a unicycle, and
    many unicyclists spend a lot of time off their unicycle when they're
    playing uniBB. But if I were to take the top 5 players from the
    Berkeley group and give them 10 minutes of coaching, I think we'd beat
    a top wheelchair team every time.

    Mixing the teams sounds fun and competitive; I'm sure there would be
    interesting strategies and tactics. I could see pressure defense
    involving one wheelchair and one unicycle attacking the ball; the
    wheelchair takes up a lot of space and blocks the low passes, while the
    unicycle can apply pressure and block the high passes.

    I have seen wheelchair basketball at halftime at Cal games, so I think
    there may be a group around here we could try to hook up with.


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  19. I think the mixed teams is best. I agree with Tom ont he maneuverability
    and height issues. However, a mixed team could likely remove many of
    these problems... And hey, we could be wrong. Until two expert teams
    meet, I don't see any reason to make presumptions.


    As for stilted unicycles... This isn't a first. There was a unicyclist
    at Camp Winnarainbow who rode a girraffe of sorts while on 32" stilts.
    He made it quite a ways, but eventually fell, shattering a kneecap. He
    was the first, and until the just now, the last unicyclist I had ever
    heard of who attempted this. I don't see it as being all that
    difficult, except for the weaker leverage afforded to the rider.


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  20. irvinegr

    irvinegr Guest

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