By Khya AKA The Gravity Addict
Hula hooping: The idea might bring up images of the past, perhaps of school children, or teenagers in the 1950s, or of the beautiful First Nations hoop dances that have held spiritual and cultural significance for generations.
You may have have seen amazing circus performers or fire spinners showing off their skills at events and festivals, which can sometimes make “hooping” feel a bit exclusive and out of your league. The truth is anyone can learn to hula hoop, and hooping has many benefits for anyone willing to put in the hours to experience them.
Salt Spring has huge potential to be one such thriving hoop community and I am so excited to introduce a beginner hoop event happening at Mahon Hall on Wednesday, April 25. This is an all-ages event for anyone who is curious about hula hooping! There are a few tricks and tips to get you started on the right foot. Finding the right sized hoop is an important step, so we will have many different sizes you can try out to see what feels best.
Kids and families are invited to come from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. and there will be snacks available courtesy of Country Grocer. Adults, teens and seniors are invited to show up at 6:45 and stay until 8:30. We will do our welcome circle at 7 p.m., so please be on time for that!
Hula hooping has many benefits. First of all, it’s great exercise for the body and because there are different kinds of hooping, like on-body, off-body and multi-hooping, there are many different ways to customize your workout routine. This means that it can be modified for people with physical disabilities and well. If you prefer core strengthening movements then on-body hooping with a big heavy hoop is your best bet. If you like quick jumps and a faster pace to dance too, then smaller dance hoops and lightweight poly-pros will give you that. If you really like to challenge yourself then you can try multi hooping, which is learning to focus on different body parts at the same time.
Every new trick you practice has its own learning curve, and while hooping is a great way to get in shape, it’s also a fantastic tool to exercise your mind and give you confidence in your own ability to learn. One of the best lessons that hooping has to teach is that everything becomes possible with time and effort. While the “flow” or trance like state of hooping is a huge part of the allure, the drilling and learning of new moves can be an intellectually stimulating activity. Not to mention the faster reflexes and better coordination that come from it.
The next benefit is that hooping is accessible and affordable. Sure it’s takes the initial investment of buying or making a hoop, but in comparison to a gym membership it’s not much. And for all the hours of entertainment you’ll get out of it, it’s got a pretty darn high return on investment. It’s an activity you can use to maintain an active lifestyle from the comfort of your living room. If you prefer spending time outsides, you can take your hoop out into the sunshine.
It’s an incredible way to have social time. There are amazing hoop communities across the globe, tons in the US and many pockets of vibrant communities throughout BC where everyone gets together weekly and “jams.” Each person with their own hoop, able to interact and share tricks or retreat into their “flow.”
The April 25 event is a great opportunity to be brave and try something new. Tickets are $15 at the door and you get $5 off your ticket price if you bring a friend. Yes, kids count as friends!
This event is sponsored by Windsor Plywood who donated tubing for this event and Country Grocer who donated snacks for the family portion of this event. Mahon Hall is wheelchair accessible, so those with mobility issues can still attend.