File Photo Credit: SportSG
Fun is usually never the first thing that springs to mind when you think of working out – not unless there’s a hula hoop involved! No longer just child’s play, the unassuming hula hoop can give you an impressive total body workout.
Hula hooping isn’t just a fad championed by the likes of Beyoncé, Zooey Deschanel, and Michelle Obama; it’s backed by a study which found that one minute of hooping can burn 7 calories. That’s 420 calories an easy hour. Apart from weight loss, hooping can tone up different groups of muscles when you incorporate strengthtraining exercises or even dance moves into your routine.
For the full workout effect, get a large, weighted hula hoop instead of the regular children’s toy. Look up beginner videos for some simple moves to get used to the motion. It may have been years, maybe decades, since you last held a hula hoop but once you’ve gotten the hang of it, it’s like you’ve been doing it forever.
When you’ve mastered the basics, the more advanced steps are where both the fun and the workout get kicked up a notch. Do alternate knee lifts while hooping (it’s possible!) to target your core. By keeping the hoop going while you do squats and lunges, you get to firm up your thighs and butt. Circle the hoop round your neck to work both your neck and upper back. There’s a surprising variety of moves you can do and muscles you can target while you’re constantly gyrating to keep the hoop from falling.
The hula hoop makes exercising that much less of a chore and more like playtime. Get your body moving and twisting, burn up those calories, tone up those muscles, and most importantly, have fun doing it!