If you’re new to the concept of hula hooping for exercise, you may be surprised to find out that hula hooping burns as many as 600 calories per hour! That’s the equivalent to an hour of Zumba or even jogging!
I love to hoop is because it gives me a feeling of being centered, calm, and elegant; all traits I admire and try to exhibit.
It’s a powerful practice that can change your life. Give it a try!
Hula Hooping Is Not Just For Kids
Hula hooping is not just a toy or a fad. It’s a fun, creative and inexpensive way for anyone to lose weight and get fit! And because hula hooping is a low impact exercise, it’s even ideal for folks with limiting injuries such as knee or joint problems. Hula hooping is a great form of exercise for:
- Senior Citizens
- People with back injuries, knee problems, etc
- People just starting out on their fitness journey
- People who are looking for a simple way to tone up
- People who have a lot of weight to lose
- People who don’t want to go to a gym
- People who are looking for a way to freshen up their exercise routine
As you can see, hula hooping truly is for everyone! Here’s a Youtube video I made of a workout I have been doing since I first started hooping.
(Sorry about how chatty I am in the beginning- just skip ahead like 45 seconds 😉 It’s one of my oldest videos now as I update this post in July of 2017.)
I have lost over 105 pounds now and much of that is directly attributed to hula hooping. Here’s a before and after shot:
The picture on the left is from around 2005 or so. The pic on the right was taken in February 2017. My weight has yo-yo’d my whole life, but the hoop helps me stay more active even during times when I’m not as motivated.
I still have more weight to lose, so that definitely isn’t my “final” after shot, but thanks to hula hooping, I’m getting there!
Health Benefits of Hula Hooping
I plan to elaborate on this in a later blog post, but I think it’s important for me to tell you right now that in addition to helping you lose weight and tone muscle, hula hooping has a myriad of other health benefits. Because of the range of motion required to move the hoop, you will significantly increase your spine flexibility, which helps to prevent future back injuries. This is especially important as we get older!
Hula hooping also improves coordination as you learn to pass the hoop from hand to hand, under your legs, behind your back and over your head. Once you get comfortable with this basic hula hooping exercise routine, I am going to teach you some beginner hula hoop tricks so that if you choose, you can evolve your hooping into more than just a form of exercise but also dance!
Also, hula hooping is great for mental health. When hooping, your brain enters what doctors describe as a “flow state”, which is basically defined as a a mental state of operation in which you are fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and enjoyment. You will clear your mind. You will cast away your worries. You will always come away from your hoop session feeling invigorated, refreshed and centered. I absolutely guarantee it!
Anyone Can Start a Hula Hooping Exercise Routine
All of the moves in just about any hula hooping exercise routine can be done by anyone. They are not difficult tricks to learn although some may take a little practice to get right. However, from the moment you start practicing, those calories are getting torched!
Also, you can be at any fitness level to do a hula hooping workout. Remember, as they say in yoga, this is your practice, and you can easily adapt it to your own level of fitness. Just start where you are, and do what you can!
Pretty much every hula hooping exercise routine you ever do is going to count as cardio. As long as that hoop is in your hand, you will be constantly moving even when your goal is toning. Therefore, your heart rate is always going to be up, resulting in a great calorie burn.
I know this because I often wear my Polar FT4 heart rate monitor watch when I hoop, and I can see that my heart rate is always elevated to at least 120 while I’m hooping, even if I’m just playing around while listening to the radio. Sometimes if I want to elevate my heart rate more, I’ll do a few quick drills in the middle of my dance session just to raise my heart rate back up to the 140 or 150 range. (By the way, I absolutely love my Polar watch and highly recommend it to anyone who is serious about weight loss–Amazon has a good price on them.)
Core Toning with Your Hula Hoop
A hula hooping exercise routine is one of the best ways to tone your core! Try waist hooping in two different ways, each for as long as 10 minutes: plant your feet hips-length apart and shift your weight side to side, then put one foot about a half step in front of the other and shift your weight forward and back. These are great drills for beginners, because it will help you determine which way you naturally like to hoop best. I’m a one foot in front of the other kind of girl. You may notice by now that your heart rate is going up quick!
You can also do a wood chop with your hoop! Try 10 on each side and then increase sets as you are able. This one makes me feel like a badass, I won’t lie. It just looks cool.
Arms & Shoulders
For this, try passing the hoop around your body by changing hands in the front and back of your body! To ramp this one up, try raising one leg and passing the hoop under it each time! This will really help you improve your coordination and work out your whole body. It may look easy, but do 20 of them and trust me, you’ll be feeling it!
This Ain’t Even the Tip of the Iceberg
I have sooo much more I want to share with you guys, but I just do not have time to produce every video I want to make!! That’s why I am so thankful for Deanne Love, hoop instructor queen extraordinaire, who has beautiful videos that will get you sweating in a matter of minutes.
The great thing about following a hula hooping exercise routine is that practicing all of these simple movements will build a great foundation for you if you choose to move further in your hoop journey by learning how to hoop dance and perform hula hoop tricks. I think I could have improved my hoop skills faster if I had started out with drills like these.
So today is the day you start your hoop journey. A year from now you will be fitter, happier, and you’ll be doing amazing things with your hoop that you can’t even imagine right now! Do not put off your fitness another second.
If you need a hoop, you can order one hand-made by me!