Saturday, January 15, 2011

Today's Fancy Scoop: Fancy Hula Hoops!

My friends Elise, Valerie, and I took advantage of this past Saturday's delightful weather and retreated to the park to play like kids while getting a bit of a workout.  What better activity than to hula hoop?  Oh yes, you know you spent hours with your hula hoop when you were eight, seeing what tricks you could make up or how long you could keep it spinning.

Or perhaps you were like Valerie and never hula hooped as a kid.  But Valerie wasn't shy about trying to learn and neither should you be!  It's pretty much impossible to take yourself seriously while hooping...unless you happen to be at a hippie music festival in which case EVERYONE seems serious while hooping and I for one get very intimidated by their skills.**   

The Dealio with Hooping:
  • Aside from being fun, hula hooping also helps shrink your waist by engaging the muscles along your torso to keep the hoop in motion.  Just 30 minutes of hula hooping burns 200 calories!
  • The hoop is important!  Ideally, it should be 35-40 inches in diameter and between 1 and 3 lbs. Anything heavier may be potentially harmful to internal organs.  This in turn could make for awkward conversation with your doctor.
  • To start the hoop spinning, simply place it around your natural waist (belly button!), perhaps standing with one foot slightly in front of the other, and move your hips in a subtle (but quick) circular motion clockwise and give the hoop a spin to get it going.  Keep up the motion to keep the hoop raised.  If this doesn't feel right, switch direction to counterclockwise.
  • Already an expert at plain 'hooping?  Add a bit of a twist with these moves!
    • One Legged: While pumping the hoop around your waist, shift all your weight to your right foot and lift your left off the ground, while still hooping.  After 30 seconds, put your left leg down and shift your weight to that leg while lifting the right leg and keeping the hoop in motion.
    • Walk like an Egyptian: After you get the hoop spinning, take a step.  Pause to ensure you've still got control of the hoop and take another step.
    • Skip-It: With the hoop around your right ankle, give it a spin and jump over it with your left foot.  After a minute, switch the hoop to the opposite ankle and repeat.
    • Jumping through Hoops:  Hold the hoop in front of you parallel to your body in both hands.  Swing it under your body, like a jump rope and jump through the hoop.
    • Really want to work your middle? Then DON'T FORGET TO LAUGH! This exercise is supposed to be fun--don't take yourself too seriously.
The links below will help you get started:
Looking to purchase a hoop? Check out Hoopnotica
Looking for a great hoop workout? Click here for Health Magazine's Hoop Yourself Slim
Wanna find out more on hooping? Visit for everything you need to know!

That's all for now!  Stay tuned this week for the lowdown on bootcamp and fancy eats!

**Hippies, please don't take offense.  I love hippies.


  1. the last ps part! looks like you guys had a blast. i want a hula hoop with lights!

  2. Me too! Light up shoes and light up hula hoops--Look out Bonnaroo 2011!