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~


You’ve heard it said before!!!


What is she talking about you say?


Hula Hooping of course! The best toy EVER!!



Two summers ago a woman visited my garage sale and during our conversation, she mentioned to me that she had started *hooping*. I asked her what hooping was and her face lit up and she was off and running with her explanation! She said ” hula hooping of course! ” Her excitement about it lit a fire in me as well……ok…..a very little fire……I mean…..oh never mind…’s been almost two years……let’s just leave it at that…..big sigh.


One of the things that impressed me about her story was that she was older than me…..she also told me that she took her hoop to work and hula’d on her breaks and during her lunch hour. Nice!


So…..with summer approaching….this year….and I am serious…THIS year…..I am going to lose some weight and build some endurance so I can thoroughly enjoy my time on the rivers in my kayak! I’ve already spent a month at Curves and I am loving it! I have taken to walking to my Curve workouts and walking home from them as well……yes!!! Now…..for the sphere…..the hoop……I wanna be a hula hooper when I grow up! I’ve been gathering information online about this fast growing phenom and the internet has no shortage of great advice for the beginner to the advanced hooper. Now…since I am just starting out….the information I share here today will be for beginners…….ready….set….let’s hula!!


I visited our local Sports Store and found that Hula Hoops (especially the professionally weighted ones) had gone up in price since I was a kid….I mean….YIKES! The cheapest one I found ran $38.00! For a hula hoop……so I decided to see if anyone had the creativity to make a You Tube video on *How to make your own Hula Hoop* EUREKA!!!! There are dozens of them! Here is a good one~



Now….beacause I want to use mine for working out….I am going to add some weight to mine when I make it. Yes….I am making mine tomorrow! For added weight you can use: water or sand. If you would like to add some noise or irritation to your workout >wink<…you can add peas, beans, rice so you get that swooshing sound while you are hooping.




Things You’ll Need

  • Poly tubing (160 psi 3/4-inch or 100 psi 1-inch diameter)
  • PVC cutter
  • Water or sand
  • Blow-dryer or hot water
  • Tubing connector (3/4 inch or 1 inch)
  • Electrical tape


    • 1: Loop the poly tubing into a circle about the size of a hula hoop. Stand with it in front of you, with the tubing touching the ground. Adjust the circumference of the circle until it rests roughly 2 to 3 inches above your naval.


    • 2: Cut the end of the tubing with a PVC cutter. Pour a cup of water or sand into the tube for weight.


    • 3: Heat the ends of the tubing with your blow-dryer or hot water until the pipe becomes more pliable. Put the two ends around a tube connector. Push the ends together until the connector is no longer visible.


    • 4: Wrap the electrical tape diagonally around the hoop. This will ensure the two ends stay tightly together.




Larger hoops will rotate more slowly, which is good for beginners. A smaller hoop will rotate faster, which is harder to learn on, but better for tricks or exercise.

Here is a short video with instructions on how to get started hooping……now isn’t this exciting?? Now…..go get started…’ll find all kinds of routines on You Tube as you gain strength and endurance to keep you busy for the next year or so….ahhhhh….the flames have been fanned and I am on fire for this!!! Let me know if any of you are going to hula with me!



Happily In His Grip~