The hula hoop is not just a children’s toy that was all the rage back in the 1950s.  The history of hula hooping dates back thousands of years to Egypt and ancient Greece when hoops were made of grapevines and were actually used for exercise.

Modern hooping started primarily as a form of dance expression using larger, weighted hula hoops, but in recent years it has found its way back into the fitness world. Trendy gyms have incorporated hooping into Pilates and yoga classes.  Some fitness professionals believe it is a full-body workout.


In an American Council on Exercise study on hula hooping conducted by Jordan Holthusen, M.S., John Porcari, Ph.D., Carl Foster, Ph.D., And Scott Doberstein, M.S., with Mark Anders in 2011 to understand the activity’s potential cardio and calorie-burning benefits the findings were as follows:

“Hooping compares pretty favorably with most other group classes, in terms of heart rate and calorie burn,” in fact, exercisers can expect similar results from hooping as they’d get from boot-camp classes, step aerobics and cardio kickboxing—all of which meet fitness industry criteria for improving cardiovascular fitness. Also, by burning approximately 210 calories per 30-minute session, hooping falls within accepted guidelines for exercise that can contribute to weight management.”

Get the Right Size Hoop for You!

The most important thing to do is to find the right size hula hoop for you.  Professional “hoopers” share that the perfect fitting hoop should measure from the ground up to about your belly button. Adult hoops for beginners are larger, heavier and MUCH easier to use than kids hoops. The added weight of a larger hoop spins more steadily than lighter hoops.

Where to Hoop?

You can hoop indoors or outdoors.  Allow yourself enough space to move freely.  You’ll need room for you, the circumference of the hoop and space to move around.

Hoop to Tunes

Music makes everything more FUN!  It may also help your body and hoop find “their groove” making everything become more fluid.  Put together a playlist of your favorite songs to keep it playful. 

Focus on FUN!

Hooping takes a little practice. If you’ve never done it before or want to hone in on your skills, be patient, don’t be hard on yourself and don’t give up! Remember…this is supposed to be FUN!


  • Stand inside the hoop with your feet parallel and hip width apart. You may move one foot slightly in front of the other. Bend your knees slightly.
  • Hold the hoop at waste level parallel to the floor.
  • Check your posture – shoulders back and down, chest lifted, abdominals contracted and spine aligned with neck and head.
  • With one hand on each side, hold the hoop horizontally so it firmly touches the small of your back.
  • Give the hoop a flat and firm push with your hands to spin it in the direction that intuitively feels best. The hoop should rotate around your body several times from momentum even if you make no movement with your body.
  • As you spin the hoop start a rhythmic pulse with your middle torso.
  • Keep your hands and elbows above the hoop.
  • Push your hip and belly slightly side to side if feet are parallel or back and forth if one foot is in front of the other slightly shifting your weight as the hoop spins around your waist.
  • Stabilize your torso and legs, and mobilize your midsection. Only use your abdominal muscles and hips to keep the hoop spinning.


  • Pulsing Parts – Pulse the part of your body where the hoop is.
  • Falling Hoop – The hoop will be drawn down of there is too much movement below the hoop in your hips and knees. If the hoop starts to fall, lengthen your spine, push forward and back, or side to side moving faster.  If the hoop continues to fall to the floor, you may need to start with a larger hoop.
  • Droopy Hoop – If hoop droops to one side or another, you might be leaning to one side more than another. To level the flow of the hoop, correct your posture and /or adjust the position of your feet.
  • Slow Hoop – Avoid moving your hips in a circular motion…this will slow down the hoop. You may also find your hoop automatically slows down after a few rotations. You can amp up the hoop speed by intensifying your torso pulse.
    • YouTube & Websites– Check out a few of the countless YouTube videos on how to hula hoop to prefect your skills or visit some of these websites:

Hoopnotica: www.hoopnotica.com • Hooping: www.hooping.org • Hooked on Hooping:  www.hookedonhooping.com

  • HAVE FUN! Hooping is a playful way to be active and exercise.

Earn Bonus Entries in to the Drawings:

Let us see how much fun you’re having!  Send your pic or video jumping rope to Coach MJ at [email protected]chingbymj.com.  


Coach MJ


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