Hoop at Home for the Holidays

With all the additional calories and stress Americans seem to pile on ourselves during the holiday season, don’t forget to carve out time for a little self-care. Hooping can spin away stress and overindulgence. I like to imagine the centrifugal force causing all my worries to fly off my body like my dog shaking rain (or snow) off her coat.

It’s too cold, at least for me, to comfortably hoop outside in mid-December, so I’ve moved my practice inside the house, allowing me easy access to hooping at any time of day or night in my skimpy hoop clothing. It also creates some additional challenges. From my own late-fall sessions, here’s some advice for home hooping:

  1. Consider the right place in your home. You will need a enough room on all sides of your body for your hoop to at least spin on your body without crashing into walls or knocking stuff over. (Consider not only waist level but chest and knee level). Ideally, you’d want an area with plenty of room to move, a tall ceiling, no breakables, and a forgiving floor surface. Yeah, I don’t have a spot like that either. So I prioritize.
  2. Optimize as best you can. Even if I had room to move in the basement, I wouldn’t want to practice on a cement slab–tough on the joints! That left our living room with plenty of breakables and not a lot of room. So we got rid of an ugly, plenty-worse-for-the-wear couch, clearing out a bunch of floor space. That still meant keeping the hoop either on body or in control during practice to avoid the fragile items on shelves, but those restrictions actually improved my practice.
  3. View indoor limitations as opportunities. Maybe inside your home you can’t toss your hoop high in the air or halo the hoop over your head. Instead you may find yourself lifting the hoop from your waist from a kneeling position–a bigger challenge. Outside you could practice anything. Inside, you might challenge yourself to practice some on-body skills more intently, like leg hooping.
  4. Try a smaller, lighter hoop. Small, lightweight hoops are great if you need more challenge or to fit in a smaller space. Lightweight hoops also are less likely to break things or hurt when they drop on your feet.
  5. Hoop to some new tunes. Varying your music can make your hooping experience feel new each time. I love to hoop to world music and get into the beat of a different culture.
  6. Visualize. Close your eyes and imagine being lit from within, light radiating out through your pores as you hoop. Feel the warmth and energy of the light waves and how the image changes the quality of your movement.
  7. Take a break to hoop. You don’t have to set aside a big chunk of time to hoop. Got a little time? Go hoop. Why not do it right now?

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