‎"...a little 'trouty', but quite good" ~ Eve Kendall, North By Northwest

Thursday, June 11, 2009

hooping

Last winter I wrote an investigative piece for a local paper. It involved going deep undercover. It involved taking a hula hooping class.

I know! The things I do for work!

It was a blast. I learned to spin it around my hand and up over my head. By the end of the night I could spin it over my head and then drop it down around my waist without knocking myself unconscious. Also by the end of the night I had sent it spinning out of control into groups of other students, nearly knocking them unconscious several dozen times. There is a reason they don't put spikes or razor wire around the outside of beginner hoops.

The next morning, I knew I had taken a hooping class. I am here to say that pilates is for pansies and if you really want a core workout, take up hooping. Especially at the beginning, when every muscle in your body is tensed in fear. Good stuff.

Fast forward to this summer, when those same women announced a schedule of kids hooping classes. I may have asked the kids in their sleep if they wanted to take the class. And then they said "mmmm..um..mmmm....yawn" and I said "great! I'll sign you up!"

Studley stood like a frozen rope for most of the class. Sugarplum finally nailed it (she has tried to hula hoop for years). And I? Could not resist the lure of joining them.

It was one of those classes where the moms sit on the sidelines and chat amongst themselves. I didn't really know any of the moms and since I was sitting all by myself I ended up chasing hoops for Sugarplum and spinning them around Studley's belly. It wasn't long before I thought it would be helpful if I participated - you know, for moral support. And there I was, hooping in front of a bunch of chatting moms, surrounded by short people. Have I no shame?

I tell myself it's like Suzuki music lessons, where the parents are encouraged to learn and practice alongside the child. I tell myself that those other moms secretly practiced hooping in their garages after the kids were in bed. I tell myself that none of them thought it the least bit strange, me jumping into the fray.

I don't hog the swings at the playground. I am delighted to sit quietly and watch their activities, lessons and sports. But sometimes? A girl's gotta play.

17 comments:

The Whispering Poppies said...

We have a hula hoop... with water inside of it (apparently this was intentional by the manufacturer). It totally throws off the entire centrifugal force thing (you'd think just the opposite), thus making me look a right dweeb when I hula!

Janine said...

I have to try this. I like exercise that kind of fools you into exercising.

I used to be an excellent hooper. But that was a long time ago.

I do remember, however that it is nearly impossible to hoop with a sweater or a jacket on.

Dana's Brain said...

I bet those other Mom's were jealous. They were wishing they had the chutzpa to get up and hula hoop.

Lesha said...

Sounds like so much fun. At the farmers market and music series I used to go to in NC, there was a lady who comes with a stock of Hula Hoops and helps the little AND big kids to hoop away to the music.

And that hula chick was serious, she had shoes with individual TOES! For toe hula hooping? Wow!

And I think those other moms were probably secretly wishing they had the guts to just get up and have a good time too!

Bella said...

i would have been right there with you....as long as you don't render me unconscious, that is.

Tiny Dancer said...

It was so long ago, I can't remember if I could hula hoop. Prolly not I wasn't real good at swinging my hips! I've tried more recently and my kids just tell me to put the hoop down!

Celia said...

When I was a nanny, K was really shy, and I had to take a few weeks of ballet classes with her before I could go sit with the "Moms".

Gayle said...

I'll bet those other moms did practice secretly that night! Very fun post!

Lisa said...

Fabulous! I have never, ever been able to hula hoop, and I've always wanted to.

JAbel said...

Off topic but have you been to Arnolds yet to see the so called"Yellow Lobster".

TwoBusy said...

Predictably, I'm entirely intrigued by the idea of a "Beyond Thunderdome"-style, razor wire-embedded hula hoop.

Laggin said...

I could hoop, and I could pogo stick, but not so much anymore. You probably had more fun than the other moms!

Zip n Tizzy said...

My mom and I would have jumped right in with you. We're hoop girls too, but, they don't put the proper weights in them any more so it's hard to get a good cheap one that will actually stay up.

LiLu said...

Hula hooping is supposed to be AMAZING exercise, too... bonus!

Debbie said...

Good for you! More people need to get off the sidelines and join in.

Newt said...

Huh. I was just thinking today that I need to un-partum the old midsection one of these days, but crunches are not on the agenda. Hooping sounds like just the ticket.

Make a video! I smell a fitness craze.

Susan said...

I thought of you all today, when I really really really wanted to go down the water slide at a kids party. Had you only been there to join me.