Tallest Unicycle

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Scroll down for video Marianne Power, pictured, attempts to use the amazing 14mph Air Wheel in a Hampshire park Marianne Power, pictured, attempts to use the amazing 14mph Air Wheel in a Hampshire park The device has a range of 24 miles on a single charge and changes direction by the user leaning The device has a range of 24 miles on a single charge and changes direction by the user leaning The Air Wheel, pictured, costs £429 and can hit a top speed of 14 miles per hour The Air Wheel, pictured, costs £429 and can hit a top speed of 14 miles per hour A bit like a Segway, this little machine is designed to help us zip around town at up to 14mph, but crucially doesn’t have the handlebars of its counterpart. With nothing to hold on to, mastering the Air Wheel is far from easy. Yet the promotional videos show people whizzing through their office reception area or flying along city streets on their wheel, holding a coffee. They’ve sold 300,000 of the Chinese-made machines since the launch last year. Walking, it seems, is so last century. Unfortunately, I don’t have a good track record of being in charge of wheels. When I tried riding a bike for the first time in years, I went flying off after hitting a pothole. I am such a nervous driver that, despite having passed my test 20 years ago, I still won’t go on the motorway. Yet here I am on a wheel, with no brakes, no steering column and no safety belt. What could possibly go wrong? My adventure began at the company’s base in Basingstoke, Hampshire, where the team showed me the ropes. The makers say you can get the basics in a couple of hours, and be proficient in a day or two. You turn it on via a button on the wheel. The idea is that you stand your feet on two pedals either side of the wheel and simply lean forward to move, back to stop and left and right to turn. Sounds simple — but it isn’t. Just getting on is impossible. It’s so unstable, I need to lean on Fabio, one of the Air Wheel team. The instructions suggest leaning against a wall at the beginning, but I find a handsome Italian man always works better. And when I say lean, I mean cling on for dear life. Even though the pedals are only three inches off the ground, I am terrified. I feel as wobbly as you’d expect from a novice on a unicycle. Balancing seems impossible and for half an hour I do more squealing than a teenage girl at a Justin Bieber concert. After mastering standing on the Air Wheel, the next ‘step’ is to start moving for a respectable distance. A tiny tilt forward and it starts to move. The more you press the faster it goes. I feel like I’m four years old when Mum took the stabilisers off my bike — I’m trundling along but I just want to get off. It’s fun, fast and will get you places quicker than your feet can. But I, for one, will be keeping my feet on solid ground. Why Ride A Unicycle, Unicycle Information, Electric Unicycle Shark Tank