Tag Archive for Weight Loss

HoopShack Spins Up Fun Fitness

Geri McNieceGeri McNiece of Around Joy, the owner of The HoopShack where some serious hooping takes place, teaches hula hoop classes for men and women of all ages in Arlington, Texas. She recently told WFAA-TV Channel 8 all about the low impact, high cardio workout that is the hot new fitness trend – thanks in part to recent news stories of Kelly Osbourne losing 70 pounds hooping. “You will lose weight and you will tone,” Geri explained. Karen Foster, a 55-year-old hooping enthusiast agreed telling them, “It is an excellent workout. I think I lost two inches the first month I was doing it. I have never had biceps like this either. They are great!” Eric Uzelac, who also uses the hoop as a fitness tool agreed, noting, “I’ve noticed that there is a little less love in my handles.”

Class members also said hula hooping brings back childhood memories. Plus, it’s a fun way to burn calories that many say doesn’t really feel like exercise. Lin Warren, 70, told WFAA, “It is a good workout. But it is the most fun. I’ve never had a workout that I’ve enjoyed and kept up with, but this is so fun.” And Shay Johnston-Conte not only agreed about the beauty of hooping for fitness, she also celebrated the meditative qualities of hooping, stating, “For me it is a totally Zen experience. I really enjoy being in the hoop, I leave all my worries behind.” Watch the news segment below:

Make the Most of Your Summer Hooping Season!

Making the Most of Your Summer Hooping Season by Philo Hagen

It’s Memorial Day Weekend in the United States and that means summer has arrived for those of us who live here. Hooping season is officially upon us and when it comes to celebrating the warmer weather and having fun in the sun there are a few essential ingredients you are going to need. First, you’ve got to have your favorite tunes, whatever they may be, so make yourself a happy summer playlist then hit the play button and crank it up! Second, you’re going to be needing more of your favorite liquid libation. Mine is that treat known as the Arnold Palmer – half ice tea and half lemonade – but whatever yours is you’re going to be needing extra fluids to keep your happy hooping self hydrated. And thirdly, you’re going to need your hoop. In fact, you should probably just take your hoop with you everywhere you go this summer. After all, there are a whole lot of really great reasons for doing just that.

For starters you will be seen as a Joymaker. Hooping doesn’t just put a smile on our own face, you’ll be seeing smiles pop up on the faces of many of the people that you pass along the way. Wherever you go, wherever you are, whether you’ll even fully aware of it or not, you’ll actually be spreading joy. Maybe those who see you will reflect back to when they were kids and how much they enjoyed the hula hoop and they’ll send you a smile. Maybe they’ll just love that you love it! Whatever the case may be, you’ll be telling the world that you’re fun and it’s no big secret that the world could use a little more joy and fun this summer. Simply by bringing your hoop with you you’re making it happen. Plus, it’s also a really great for recruiting. You’ll be destined to encounter those with “that look” in their eyes, y’know that look, the ones who will be telepathically telling you and wishing and hoping that they will get to give it a spin for themselves. And if you have the time, by all means let them, then let them know where the next hoopjam or class or event or gathering is too. After all, by turning someone on to the magic of hooping you’re quite likely meeting people you’ll soon be seeing again and again. You might just be meeting your most future favorite treasured friends.

Another thing about taking your hoop with you is that there may be all kinds of people hooping where you live, but how would anyone know or find one another if all of us kept our hooping relegated to private? Taking your hoop with you throughout the day is the single most sure fire way to find the other hoopers living near you. Why? Because whenever we see someone out in public with a hoop, we just have to go talk to them about it! If you’re sending out “The Hoop Signal” with a smile on your face, any other hoopers in your vicinity will answer the call and before you know it you’ll have a new hoop group getting together.

Even though your summer is destined to be wonderful, there are bound to be a few moments here and there that might need a little spirit lifting too. If you’re feeling tired or a little down in the midst of your day this coming season, your hoop will be right there with you – ready and available with some welcome relief. When it comes to hitting that 3:00 pm wall at work a five-minute hoop session can be just as effective as an iced latte in perking us back up, boosting our physical energy and helping us get our shine back. Many out there may have gotten a little stiff over the winter as well, but don’t worry. The hoop is great for getting the kinks out, not to mention that it’s a great tool for stretching too. By having it with you and ready for a quickie, you don’t have to wait all day and let that physical tension pile up in your body this summer. Grab your hoop when your body says it needs a break and your summer will stay in flow.

The hoop is also a powerful meditation tool and is phenomenal for getting us back into the here and now, living in the present moment. How can we enjoy our summer if we’re not even home for it? Many stress counselors who aren’t even hoopers regularly counsel their clients to only worry about what is going on inside of their own personal hula hoop, and we won’t even need to be metaphorical about it! Even a five-minute quiet hooping session with our eyes closed, just feeling the hoop on our body and focusing on our breathing and the rhythm of the hoop can help us chill whenever we need a little cooling down and centering.

Let’s also not forget that hooping is the perfect workout to get us back into summer shape, and maybe even that summer swimsuit. Summer has a tendency to bring even more events and activities to our already busy lives, so when do we have time to exercise? Answer: Whenever some free time finds us if we already have our hoop handy. Can’t find an hour in your hectic schedule to hit the gym? Who cares? A few ten minute exercise breaks throughout the day will give you that half hour of exercise whenever you can find some time to squeeze it in, and when you’re burning 210 calories in half an hour you won’t have to worry about having a little extra frozen yogurt.

If you’re taking your hoop with you everywhere this summer you also never know what can and will happen. When we say no life is pretty predictable. There’s not a lot of alternatives to figure out, but when we say yes the possibilities are limitless! We’ve all had those moments when we show up somewhere and for one reason or another – a band is doing a free afternoon lunchtime concert – that song just comes on the radio that makes us want to spin it up – an idea for a hoop move suddenly pops into our head… and with our hoop by our side we won’t ever have to find ourselves saying, “If only I had my hoop with me right now!” And who knows, your hoop might just accidentally roll over to that cute guy or gal you’ve had an eye on. Hello! You might even get famous! Most of us wouldn’t mind having a little more attention in our lives and total strangers might ask to take our picture. People may walk right up and give you money. Seriously, those who aren’t familiar with hooping may think you’re performing even if you’re not. Someone might even offer you a gig or a job. Show up in the same place often enough and you might even become the topic of your own summer news story. We’re not kidding! All of these things happen and a whole lot more!

Most of all, when it comes to celebrating summer we all can use a little reminder in our lives to take time out to play. All work and no play makes most of us pretty miserable and summer is the perfect time to pocket the procrastination and simply enjoy ourselves. Even hoopers who have been at it for quite awhile can forget to play, spending too much time focusing on perfecting this move or that, rather than simply letting go and having fun. So get out of your head and into the sunshine dear hooper! The world awaits you and carrying your hoop with you out and seeing all the smiling faces, having the conversations, making new friends, all the while finding our space and taking care of ourselves along the way – will help you create enough space in your life to simply welcome more play time and welcome every day of summer with a smile. Take time out for your daily recess and you’ll have a blast with your hoop all summer long. Have a blast this summer hoopers! You deserve it!

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Philo Hagen Philo Hagen is the Co-founder and Managing Editor of Hooping.org. He’s been spinning things up online and off since April 2003. Co-Founder of the Bay Area Hoopers and LA Hoopers hoop groups, Philo has performed internationally and has won Hoopie Awards for Male Hooper of the Year and Video of the Year. He lives in Los Angeles, California, USA.

What a Difference a Year of Hooping Makes

Clair Ching by Clair Ching

One year and 30 pounds ago, I picked up my first hoop from Hoopaholic Cebu. Thanks to watching a hoop performance and reading an article about how hooping could be good exercise, I became a hooper. I weighed almost 200 pounds then and I only started hooping after I had lost 10 pounds. Going from 196 lbs to 186 lbs took 3 months. Then, with hooping regularly and being more conscious of my food intake the weight disappeared. I now weigh around 156.

The first week it was a struggle for me to keep the hoop up. Thankfully I was able to attend Tempest’s hooping workshop early on. It was there that I learned some really basic passes and turns and she gave me tips on how to keep my hoop from falling. That workshop encouraged me to keep going. A month later I began learning more about the hooping community here in the Philippines. I first met a bunch of them at the Fete dela Musique festival. I was a total newbie who was clueless and yet they welcomed me despite my knowing so little.

Throughout the year so many things happened:

1. I learned tricks that helped me have regular physical activity. Hooping on a regular basis for around 30 minutes or so was great cardio. I have no patience for running or jogging or any kind of exercise that would seem so boring.

2. I gained new friends. I met them first either at a spin jam or on Facebook. Either way, I am really happy to have them in my life and they share the same kind of passion for hooping that I have. These are people I get to learn tricks with and at the same time, I am able to learn how to deal with more types of people because I get exposed to different kinds of personalities. Maybe I could say that my circles are a bit more diverse now.

3. I found a way to express creativity. Whether it’s through combining moves or teaching hoop tricks, it involves some kind of creative work. It’s not easy to explain certain moves to other people because everyone has a different take on doing things.

4. I lost weight. This is partially because of hooping and partially because of the change in diet. I think that diet and physical activity need to go hand in hand for it to be more effective.

At the same time I had to wrestle with some bad thoughts and feelings. Hooping can be overwhelming, especially to someone like me. Some of the things I had to deal with and what I did are:

1. I felt bad about not getting the moves right away. When almost everyone around you is learning a new move and you still haven’t gone beyond the basic drills which are prerequisites to the move, you feel frustrated. There were times that I was tempted to quit hooping in the earlier stage, but I just stopped myself because I wanted to give hooping a fair chance before I decide to give it up.

2. I felt super self-conscious every time there was a spin jam. Most of the people who attend such events are young people who aren’t as big as I am. I felt like a big fat clumsy old person among them. Well, losing weight has helped me become less self conscious, but at the same time I’ve realized that some of the hoopers that I like a lot are older than I am and they are hooping their hearts’ out. Why should I feel upset, right? Hooping is for anyone, regardless of age, gender or size.

3. Being a lone hooper is tough. It’s sometimes necessary to be alone when practicing but I have to admit that there are days when focus and concentration aren’t enough and you really have to see other people hoop to understand how a move works. And of course, there are times when it’s so much more fun learning together. I practice alone when I need to focus on some things, but when I am with other hoopers they teach me and I can also learn by teaching them, because I break down the move differently for a person who’s asking me about it.

Today, when life and hooping throw stuff my way that’s not really encouraging, I get strength from my dear boyfriend and my hoop friends. Sometimes personal feelings do affect my practice. And sometimes, my practice affects other things in my life. My partner helps me through these things and so do my friends. I am so thankful for them! Performing for an audience is one of the things I am learning to handle right now and they go and watch me and tell me what my points of improvement are. That way I learn from them. In general, the local hoopers here in the Philippines have been helpful to me as I go on my hoop journey. They inspire me as I watch them spin, evolve and just have fun while hooping.

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Clair Ching Clair Ching blogs regularly at Being a Crafty Cat. She’s an analyst at CodeFlux and her other geekery includes participating as a volunteer in events by the local Google Developer Group chapter and occasionally, Startup Weekend Manila. Her creative pursuits include hooping, crochet and knitting. You can follow her on Twitter. She lives in the Philippines.

Our Spring Fling 30/30 Challenge

Spring Fling 30/30 Challenge [Hooping.org’s Editor Philo Hagen launches our new 30/30 Challenge for Spring!]

Don’t you just love springtime? It’s the month of May already, can you believe it? And as the world begins to emerge from winter, and the birds begin to sing and the flowers start to bloom, it almost feels like anything is possible again. And guess what? It is! So whether it’s time to kick start your hooping practice back up after the cold winter blues, bring yourself back into the center of your own rotation or simply lose some winter weight and get back in shape for summer, Hooping.org’s Spring Fling 30/30 Hooping Challenge is here to help make it happen!

For those who may not be familiar with our 30/30 Challenges, the basic premise is this: 1) Make a public declaration that you will be hooping for at least 30 minutes a day for the next 30 consecutive days in May and do so by leaving a reply or comment below at the end of this post. 2) Each day when you have completed your 30 minutes of hooping post about your daily hooping experience, as brief or as detailed as you want to be, on the post for the corresponding challenge day on Hooping.org’s Facebook Page. Why? So we all have accountability to one another and can help support each other along the way. A new challenge post will go up on Hooping.org’s Facebook Page each day around midnight PST. In fact, today’s check in post is already there so get hooping!

Given that the more people we have involved in the challenge, the merrier it will be, we invite you to help us spread the word about it. And because May has 31 days, anyone you know who can’t get on the hooping bandwagon today can simply begin tomorrow on May 2nd, and those of us who start today on May 1st will have one wild-card day of rest to use at your discretion should you find yourself needing it.

Self Magazine Hoops It Up with Kelly Osbourne

Kelly Osbourne Self Magazine Cover Who is on the cover of Self magazine this month with her hula hoops? That’s right, Kelly Osbourne! “I call myself a former fat person, and when you’re an FFP, you still see yourself as the person you used to be. That’s something I’m genuinely working on all the time,” she confessed. But Kelly is keeping the weight off and her secret, of course, is hooping so when Self wanted her to do a photo shoot that was really all about her most truly authentic self, Kelly had to bring her hoops. Kelly finally feels happy with her body too, and while she says her figure’s not perfect, she loves it, adding, “I don’t want it to be [perfect]. That’s so boring!”

The reality star isn’t just spreading news about the hoop and health though, she talks with Self about finding self-love and self acceptance. She explains, “I don’t compare myself to anybody else. It’s OK to have a healthy envy and look up to somebody and set goals, but you have to realize that you’re never going to be exactly that person. Wishing you were Angelina Jolie or J.Lo isn’t going to change the fact that you’re not. Why not start working with what you do have instead of what you don’t?” Check out the video of her photo shoot below which includes a little bit of Kelly hooping it up. For more with Kelly Osbourne, pick up a copy of Self magazine, on sale April 22.