Unicycling is just one unique way to get out and around in the city.
Tom Schneider knows a thing or two about adventure.
As a jumpmaster and rappel master in the army, his every day job consisted of stunts that us regular people plan a lifetime for. In 2016, he sprained both wrists, which meant he would be benched for the skydiving and rappelling season. But he needed to scratch that danger itch, and where does one go for adventure when they can already jump out of a plane with their eyes closed?
They take a walk on the weird side, of course.
As he was healing and enjoying the spring weather with his wife, he hit a garage sale. Sitting off to the side at one sale was a vintage 1960s unicycle. Schneider flashed back to his childhood, when he had tooled around on one wheel for fun around age ten, until it broke after he started riding it off road. At that time, they just weren’t designed for rough terrain. He decided to pay the $10 asking price and see if he could still ride. In less than an hour, he was back in business. 40 years had passed since his last one-wheeled adventure. Schneider had just taken himself down an unplanned and unconventional path. Figuratively, as well as literally.
Two short years have passed since Schneider rekindled his single-axle love affair. In that time, he has been sponsored by Nimbus Unicycles and Unicycle.com. After curiously Googling “extreme unicycling,” he discovered that someone somewhere had had the bright (or maybe crazy) idea to create a mountain unicycle. He fell in love with off-roading, and then added a long-distance cycle to his herd. In 2017, he rode over 400 miles on one wheel between training and charity work –including becoming the first person to complete the Pelotonia on one wheel.
Schneider compares the challenge and focus of unicycle riding to his training as a skydiver. The difference therein is that padding counts.
“You will fall a lot, and all you’re thinking about is that next tree root, rock etc. I’m not brave; I watch a bicyclist clear a route—[they] did it, so I will. It may take me several attempts, but I know it’s doable. Each time you clear a trail, your confidence shoots thru the roof. You won’t get cocky because you may not clear it the next time.
“It’s a massive workout as well—your legs are going to be sore because they don’t stop working. You’ll need to eat more and drink plenty of water with electrolytes. You’ll burn through calories like crazy!”
Unicycling is different from bicycling in that there are no handlebars, no gears, no coasting, no chain. And unicycles are very unforgiving—one wrong move and you’re down. The riders rely on their core for control; they must stay directly above the wheel. On a bike, the rider is stabilized and spread out over two wheels and a frame, leaning forward. Schneider didn’t ride bicycles at all prior to his foray into single-wheeled adventure. In the last two years, he has dusted off his old road bike, and become a commuter cyclist. But this is only to support his habit.
“If I miss three or four days of uni, then I have to start all over again, and riding my bike to and from work helps with that.”
There are plenty of mountain bike trails in the Columbus area. Much like mountain biking, mountain unicycling is simply riding in the woods versus the street. Alum Creek has trails available for public use that are maintained by the Central Ohio Mountain Bike Organization, the only group authorized by the state to build and maintain trails.
A great way to keep in shape, both mentally and physically, the novelty of the sport may overshadow the practice. But keeping an open mind may lead a new rider down a one-wheeled path to health and fellowship.
“I am truly trying to build the uni community here in Columbus. I’m 55 yrs old and in the best shape of my life, shy of the Army. Many say, ‘I could never do that…’ Yeah, you’re probably right because you just told yourself you can’t! Get with me and I’d be overjoyed to teach you.”
Medical marijuana arrives in Columbus next week
Got your card? Terrasana – central Ohio’s first dispensary for medical marijuana – will open to patients in Ohio’s medical marijuana program this Tuesday, March 26th.
The dispensary which also has plans for locations in Cleveland, Fremont, and Springfield Ohio will open at 656 Grandview Avenue.
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According to the company’s website, Terrasana’s goal is to connect high quality cannabis to patients in need with a doctor-driven approach focused on education.
Prices for the dispensary’s products start at 40 dollars per unit, though it’s unclear what that equates to in quantity or dose at this time.
Will you line up to be a day-one patient in Columbus’ growing MMJ scene? Let us know your thoughts in the comments
Float, flow, stretch, and breathe toward a healthier you
Being the best possible you is about more than just eating healthy and working out. It’s about mind, body, and spiritual fitness as well. Fortunately the city is home to a bevy of experts, practitioners, and spas to help you find your bliss and be the best possible you.
1. Tune Everything Out
Floatation therapy uses a pool of approximately 10 inches of heavily infused epsom salt water as a form of pseudo sensory deprivation to help you achieve complete peacefulness. The idea is to use floating to achieve the same state of mind as right before you fall asleep at night where your mind is at ease and your body has fully relaxed. You’re encouraged to focus on your breathing and meditate. For a fully immersive experience, float tanks can be encapsulated. Drifting away in an hour-long session, users have reported feeling calmer, getting a better night’s sleep, and feeling more in tune with their mind and body.
Check out: Ebb & Float, ebbfloat.com | True Rest Float Spa, truerest.com
2. Manage Pain
Acupuncture is a form of Chinese medicine in which sterile needles are placed on “meridians,” or lines of energy running along the body which correspond to organ systems. Acupuncture is used to treat a variety of conditions and provide pain relief, possibly by competing with pain signals to the brain. Cupping can be used as a complementary therapy to acupuncture and offers some effects of deep tissue massages by placing glass cups (often on the back) to create suction and increase blood flow, augmenting other benefits of acupressure practices.
Check out: Urban Acupuncture Center, urbanacupuncturecenter.org |12 Meridians Acupuncture, 12meridiansacupuncture.com
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3. Release Tension, Stretch, and Increase Flexibility
Thai yoga, also referred to as Thai body work, is not your traditional take on massages. Instead of lying still while a massage therapist works on your body, Thai yoga has specialists that move, stretch, and position your body in a multitude of positions to best help your troubled areas, which could be great for people who struggle with lower back pain or stress-caused conditions. The theory behind Thai yoga goes back to Ayurveda medicine, developed in India, where the practice was based on a balance of mind, body, and spirit through energies in the body. Thai yoga hopes to channel these energies through massage, compression, and stretching and allow them to flow more freely. The practice features various techniques dependent on how your body is feeling that day; this could mean the use of oils, or the use of voice with mantras. Beyond a more well-stretched and massaged feeling afterwards, many users said they feel rejuvenated mentally and spiritually.
Check out: Jai Center For Wellness, jaicenterforwellness.com |Reden Yoga, redenyoga.com
4. Breathe Better
Halotherapy is the therapeutic use of a room lined from ceiling to floor in large crystal salt to simulate the cool but dry atmosphere of a natural salt cave. A device (appropriately named the halogenerator) smashes salt into microscopic pieces, allowing them to be released in the air through ventilation systems.
In 45-minute sessions, users can relax and breathe in the salty air, which has been claimed to potentially alleviate breathing issues such as asthma or allergies. Additionally, the calm, quiet, and dark rooms are perfect for a moment of mediation. The salt has been also said to help with skin bacteria and impurities, similar to popular mud masks made with minerals from the Dead Sea.
Check out: Tranquility Salt Cave, tranquilitysaltcave.com |Philosophi Salon and Salt Spa, philosophisalon.com
Refresh Resolution: 14 cheap, free ways to fulfill your health goals
Getting in shape is one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions. Plus, after all that holiday binging, your body is begging for some tlc.
Getting in shape can be expensive but it doesn’t have to be! Below is a list of 14 ways to have a healthy New Year.
$1 down, $10 a month, no commitment, now through January 15.
As a member, you’ll have access to a full workout facility 24/7, over 50 group training sessions per week, and Free Pizza Mondays (because you can’t be good all the time).
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Crushing it Columbus
333 W Broad St., Columbus
No fancy equipment, no professional facility, just a good old-fashioned workout. Crushing it Columbus meets every Wednesday at 6:15am on the stairs of COSI to sweat it out.
Everyone is welcomed, no matter the experience level.
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535 E Whittier St., Columbus
Looking to get fit in a safe(r) space? Queer Yoga offers $6 yoga classes every Tuesday. Yoga mats are encouraged and all are welcome.
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Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks are offering several winter hiking events throughout the season. Three Creeks, Scioto Audubon, and Prairie Oaks are just a few of the participating parks. Some of them are pet friendly too!
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Work off that Sunday brunch with free yoga at Lululemon’s Easton and Polaris locations. All experience levels welcome!
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Cap City Salsa
566 W Rich St., Columbus
Dance those pounds away with a four week salsa course hosted by Cap City Salsa. For $12 per session, you’ll learn some salsa basics for beginners!
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3535 Olentangy River Rd, Columbus
Supplement your workout with healthy thought processes. Ohio Health is offering a free six week course focusing on the topics of chronic illness, healthy eating and mental wellness.
This women’s health class runs Jan 28- Mar 4th and registration is required.
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The Fitness Loft
625 Parsons Ave., Columbus
The fitness loft offers a variety of classes from cycling to zumba to boxing. They’re currently offering a Groupon special, plus one-year memberships for 20 percent off and six-month memberships for 10 percent off for new and current members.
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Kinetic Climbing & Fitness
717 Hadley Dr., Columbus
Switch up your workout and have an adventure at Kinetic. Grab a climbing buddy or collect a whole group to save big on Groupon.
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Break a cool sweat at one of Columbus’ ice rinks. Head to one of Ohio Health’s Chiller Ice Rinks, where public skating is available throughout the week for under $10. They also offer Friday Night Meltdown, a public skating event with a DJ.
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3969 Trueman Blvd., Hilliard
They say that abs are made in the kitchen, so learn how to properly fuel your body with Dr Kevin Sarich and Ali Cooper as they lead free health classes on how to lose weight with healthy eating. Reservations required.
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Babes HIIT Columbus offers several cheap and free monthly fitness events at numerous locations in the area. They offer free winter hikes, champagne and yoga, Fitt camp and so much more.
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Yoga On High
1020 Dennison Ave. Suite 202, Columbus
Yoga on high offers free (donation based) ABC inclusive yoga classes every Saturday from 2-3pm. Each week features a different teacher and style of yoga so you’ll never get bored! Registration is required and accessible through their website.
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609 Oakland Park Ave., Columbus
Interested in Crossfit? This Clintonville gym offers free community classes every Saturday at 10am. This three class trials gives you the opportunity to dip your toes into the pool of crossfit. No registration is necessary, just show up!
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