Remember back in the day when you used to hula hoop (or, at least attempt to!) for hours and hours? What you probably didn't realize back then was that in addition to passing time by keeping that hoop swinging around your hips, you were also getting in a great workout!
While the days of recess and blacktops are far behind us, hula-hooping has reemerged as a fitness craze. The lightweight hoops of our childhood have been replaced by weighted rings that companies like Heavy Hoop (deemed "Hollywood's Favorite Workout" for its popularity with A-Listers), Sports Hoop, and Hoop Girl have all centered their businesses. The health benefits of this iconic toy include a toned core and butt and an improved posture.
Most recently, Hoopnotica spun onto the scene with its line of hoops and instructional DVDs touted by everyone from Beyonce to editors at Vogue. Vogue even labeled the workout a "new obsession," claiming, "the two-pound hoops target the obliques and the hard-to-tone lower abs, guaranteeing a more whittled waist to cinch wide belts."
Whether you are hoping to look hot in a big belt or you just want a fun and sexy approach to exercise, consider giving this trend a spin. Check to see if your gym or community center is one of the many facilities offering hooping classes. Or, if you prefer to work out from home, pick up your own weighted hoop and try these basic moves. See the video below for a demonstration of hula moves. As with any workout, don't forget to warm up before and cool down after by stretching and jogging or marching in place for five minutes.
Eight minutes of pure hooping will burn up to 110 calories, and the added exercises target major muscle groups, like your glutes, quads, and abs. For an upper body workout, hold onto light weights while you spin and add some extra moves, like tricep extensions, bicep curls, or overhead presses.
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