Hula-Hoop Your Way to Skinny

I’m always on the hunt for a fun way to torch those pesky calories. Working out doesn’t have to be a chore if you find one you enjoy. So of course you can imagine my excitement when I stumbled across a workout that’s based around one of my favorite childhood toys—the hula-hoop. 

Hoopnotica is on a mission to put the fun back into fitness one hoop at a time. “Hooping has a clear advantage over almost every other workout on the market: it's so much fun!” says Hoopnotica chief visionary officer of education Jacqui Becker. “When you find great joy in an activity, you make time for it. You introduce your friends to it. You become part of a greater community. Hoopnotica isn't just a workout, it's a sustainable lifestyle.”

I must admit that when I went to my first class, I thought I was just going to spend an hour rocking my hips back and forth spinning a hoop around. But, boy, was I wrong. I found out that in a Hoopnotica class you do so much more than that—you learn to hoop on different parts of your body like your waist, hips and arms. You also do different choreography and (when you’re more advanced) lunges and squats. You’re never going to get bored in this class.

If you’re really devoted to your hooping, you’ll see some pretty amazing results. “We hear lots of stories from people who drop 100 pounds over the course of a year,” says Becker. “Kelly Osbourne famously lost two inches from her waist in less than two weeks by hooping!”

But they don’t only have stories of success, they also have studies to back it up. “A 2011 study sponsored by American Council on Exercise (ACE) proved that hooping is the total physical package: it improves balance and flexibility while strengthening abdominal, back, arm, and leg muscles,” says Becker. 

After my first class, I was hungry for more so I started hooping at home. I just pop in one of their instructional DVDs and go for it. You don’t have to always follow the DVDs either—it’s fun to just experiment with the hoop and create different routines on your own. Now I even hoop while I’m watching TV!

So if you’re in the market for a super fun and effective workout—definitely give Hoopnotica a try. Check out their website to find a class near you or order your own hoop kit.