By Gail Morris  



Gail Morris has been writing extensively since 1997. She completed a master’s degree in nursing at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and practiced in medicine for more than 20 years. Morris has published medical articles in peer-reviewed journals and now writes for various online publications and freelances for Internet marketers.


Hula hoops have changed dramatically since they were first released in the United States in 1958. The originals started a fad that saw manufacturers sell more 100 million hoops in two years. According to Spinning Hoop, the sport has evolved, and is now a variety of competitions around the world, including a world championship. The sport does not require you to purchase lots of equipment; you can do it almost anywhere — and you can make a hula hoop at home for less than $5.




John Parnell, also known as Hoop Guy, teaches and performs using hula hoops. He stresses the holistic nature of hooping, noting that many people find it helps lift their mood. In a 2009 interview in Britain’s “Telegraph” newspaper, Parnell said, “Not many people appreciate that the brain works better when given physical and spatial skills challenges as well as ordinary mental stimulation.”


Core Strength


Core muscles help to support the body in the standing position, protect the abdominal organs, and shield the back. The body motion required to keep a hula hoop moving helps to improve the tone and strength of the core muscles. Mayo Clinic physician Edward Laskowski described the movements required to hoop: Holding the hoop against the back and slightly above the waist, put one foot ahead of the other and push the hoop around the waist. By shifting weight back and forth from one foot to the other, the hoop will continue to move, working muscles throughout the core.


Weight Loss


Hula hoop exercises are a solid addition to any weight-loss program. To burn calories, the body must increase oxygen use and burn fat. The heart rate must reach between 65-85% of a maximum rate to get into the fat burning zone, Ron Klint writes for Hooping, adding that the motion and exertion will ultimately result in weight loss and toned inches. The more time you spend hooping, the more oxygen you will use, and the more fat you will burn. Thus, the hula hoop you choose for exercise should be of a size and weight that will allow you to work for the longest period of time possible. A smaller and lighter hoop will require more energy and yield a better aerobic workout, while a heavier hoop will allow the user to work for longer periods of time, and reach the fat-burning zone.


Deb’s note~ I made my own hula hoops for around $7.00 each…..(see picture above). I am really really enjoying hooping! It’s not hard…’s relaxing in fact….just put on some nice music and you are off and hooping!

In His Grip~