After yoga and pilates, hooping is the new kid on the block to burn calories and keep your body into shape in a fun and rewarding way. The hooping movement is bigger bigger and bigger as more people re-discover the hula hoop from their childhood. But this time, the hula hoop is not just a toy, but a real partner in your fight against body fat and calories! And it's true. The right hula hoop workout can burn tons of calories. You only have to keep some general tips and best practices in mind, which we will share with you in this post.
What is hooping?
But before we continue to the hooping tips, lets first take a moment to discover what hooping actually is. Unlike the traditional hula hoop which is just a children's toy, the hoops used for a hula hoop workout are much bigger and heavier. After all, the goal is to burn calories! Usually these kind of hoops are called sports hoops or weighed hoops but sometimes other names are used as well.
But do not let the size and weight of such a sport hoop scare you! In fact, it's easier to get a sports hoop spinning around your waist than a traditional toys hula hoop, since a sports hoop can be kept in the air with a much slower spin.
With a balanced hula hoop work out, you can build a strong body and improve the flexibility of your muscles in a really short time. Even experienced fitness gurus recognize a hula hoop workout as a great exercise form that makes your muscles grow stronger and improves your cardio health. On top of that, according to research, just a 30 minute work out with a weighted sports hula hoop will burn about 400 calories, which makes hooping a real calorie burner and a great way to loose weight!
Buying the perfect sports hoop
To make your hula hoop workout a fun and rewarding experience, you have to keep some general tips and rules of thumb in mind though.
First of all, it's important to choose the right size and weight for your hoop in comparison with your own body size and weight. As a general rule of thumb, you should consider the following recommended sizes:
- 5 or 6 lb hoops are recommended for adult users weighing over 180 lb
- 4 lb hoops are recommended for adult users only weighing between 140 lb and 180 lb
- 3 lb hoops are recommended for adults and teenagers weighing between 100 lb and 140 lb
- 1 lb and 2 lb hoops are recommended for hoopdancing or teenagers and children weighing less than 100 lb
Apart from the size and weight, you may also consider to choose a travel friendly hula hoop if you are on the road a lot and want to exercise where ever you are. Do not forget that a hula hoop is huge in size and impossible to take with you, unless you choose a model that can be disassembled. But do not worry, almost every well known hooping brand offers models that can be easily disassembled.
After you bought the perfect hoop for your body weight, size and (of course) personal taste, it's important to read the instructions from the manufacturer carefully. (These instructions should be included in the package when you purchase the hoop in your local shop.
Building up a hula hoop workout routine
If it is your first hooping experience, then it is important that you build up your exercise routine gradually. If not, you might get injuries since your body is not yet ready for a hard workout session. So when you are a starter, you should not hula hoop for more then 2 minutes a session in your first week. And you can do 2 individual sessions a day. This sounds a bit a bit lame, but do not let the weight of the hula hoop surprise you.
If you feel strong enough in your second week, you can build up your schedule on a daily basis. First start with 5 minutes and build up to 15 to 20 minutes a session on your last day.
In the third week, you can build up each session to 30 minutes and that's where the real calorie burning starts!
It's hard to give you exact facts, but according to research by the American Council of Exercise, it should be possible to burn around 200 calories in a 30 minute session with a light toy hula hoop. This test was performed by a person being stationary on the floor with their both feet. It's possible to increase calorie burn by adding more variety to your hula hoop exercise. But by using a heavier sports hoop, it is proven that a normal person will burn around 400 calories. So just by switching from a lightweight hoop to a more professional weighted sports hoop, you can double your calorie burn! Is not that great?
Another variety that you can add to your hooping exercise is dancing! In a hoop dance your partner is your hula hoop. The music you choose to dance on is entirely up to you. But with the extra movements and hooping tricks that you do, you can imagine that the number of calories that you burn increases dramatically. Try for example to balance on one foot while hooping, or try to move your hoop around your body in an angle. There are tons of other hooping tricks that you can perform. Just Google the internet for a couple of minutes and you will get inspired immediately!
So … I hope that I got you interested into hula hooping with this short introduction! I'm sure it will get you hooked from the first moment if you give this great exercise form a try. And if you would like some more information and insight tips about hooping, then do not forget to check out my profile where you can find a link to my website which is full of hooping fact and tips!