Being a full-time student with a part-time job, I like workouts that are easy, quick and fun to do at home. During one of my searches for a workout, I came across hula hoop fitness. At first, I laughed because there was no possible way that hula hoop workouts were an actual thing. However, the more I looked into the subject; I discovered just how big of a fitness trend hula hooping is.
Fitness centers now offer classes and there are even fitness centers specifically built for hula hooping. I would have never believed it myself, if I hadn’t found a website that sold hula hoop workout gear, DVDs, and even weighted, resizable adult hula hoops. I was astounded by what I had found and I had to know if this new fad was effective.
I decided to try to the hula hoop workout on realsimple.com. It has four moves, the “side-to-side,” the “front-to-back,” the “bump” and the “orbit,” but the webpage did not specify the amount of time that the workout should take, so I decided to make it 45 minutes. I did each move for 10 minutes, and I used the last five minutes to repeat the “side-to-side.” I thought that this would be a great opportunity to catch up on show “The Closer,” while attempting this workout in my apartment living room.
I started with the “side-to-side” move. It took a couple times to get my hips swaying the right way to keep the hoop orbiting my waist, but once I got the motion down I was able to keep it going for the full five minutes. The “front-to-back” move was a little harder to get going because I had never hula hooped that way, but once I got the hang of it I was able to keep a constant rhythm.
Everything was going well and I felt like I was giving my body a good workout until it came time for the “bump.” This move requires my feet shoulder length apart, and knees bent, the hula hoop is supposed to swing around my waist while my back is flat. To keep the hoop moving I’m supposed to pump my knees up and down. The directions sound almost doable, almost. However, my body was not made for that kind of movement and I could not get the hula hoop to do a full rotation. The hoop kept hitting my knees and falling off. I repeatedly checked the website to make sure that I was following the proper form but I continued to get the same results.
I was happy when those 10 minutes were up and that it was time to move one to the “orbit” which should have been easier to do than the “bump,” but I was completely wrong. I was not able to do this move at all. Mostly because this move requires the hoop to swing around my palm, while my arm is extended over my head. Every time that I started to raise my arm the hoop would fall down my forearm. I was never able to get the hula hoop and my arm over my head. This also turned out to be the most dangerous move. I almost hit one of my roommates in the back of his head while he watched TV with me; I hit two different walls and almost knocked over a lamp and completely freaked out my dog. I was told to stop before I broke anything, and I went back to the “side-to-side” move. I made sure to really push myself in the last 15 minutes to try and make up for the last 20 that I wasn’t able to do.
Besides having trouble with a couple of the moves, I did enjoy the workout. It was low impact and was able to work on all of my muscles. This unique workout made me move my body in ways that most workouts don’t, which was a nice change from a treadmill or a weight machine.