Just one hoop is never enough. There are hoops available in every color combination imaginable. From fabric hoops, to super shiny hoops, its easy to find something to match a personality. Hoopnotica even released a Black Leather Hoop for Black Friday this year. It’s beautiful, and it must feel amazing to dance with it on your skin.
No hooper is going to complain about an extra hoop, but there are so many different kinds that you should have no problem filling an empty spot in your recipients collection. There are five types of hoops. Heavier hoops made with irrigation tubing, lighter performance polypro hoops, LED lighted hoops, travel hoops, and mini poi hoops. They are all useful for different kinds of hoop tricks. If you know that your favoite hooper only uses one hoop, a set of minis would be a great idea for them to broaden their practice. If you have a friend that has been hooping for a while, but is lacking a high performance hoop, a polypro hoop is a great option. If your hooper likes to take their hoop out at night, an LED hoop will be a great addition to their hoop collection. Do you know someone who travels a lot but has a hoop that doesn’t break down? A collapsible travel hoop will allow them to bring their hoop love wherever their travels take them.
Maybe you saw a hoop dancer at a recent festival, or came across a performance video online, or you have a friend that is already under the hoop spell. If you’ve been admiring the hoop from afar and are ready to experience the hoop love yourself, here are some of my favourite resources for beginners to get started:
On our own trick list, you can view tricks that are good for beginners. Here you can start learning the easier tricks to get your body used to moving with the hoop. If you are truly picking up the hoop for the first time, take a look at our collection of tutorials on how to hula hoop on your waist.
Jensen Hussey gets very detailed in her Guide for New Hoopers. This is an excellent resource for people that are really excited and ready to being their hoop practice. She figured out a way to calculate which size hoop is the best for your body by working with your height and waist measurement. She also goes over how to get the hoop to stay on your waist and how to move forward into the wonderful world of hooping after you get that down.
Troo Hoops explains how to begin your hoop journey on their Start Hooping page. It’s filled with tips on how to keep the hoop on your waist, how to exercise with your hoop, video tutorials, and getting involved in the hoop community.
This Hooping.org article talks about how to start hooping at your waist. They break it down to two easy tips: Make sure you have the right size hoop, and rock back and forth.
So you’ve got some tricks down and you want to share your knowledge? No better way than to make a video tutorial. If you get enough views you could make some side cash, and maybe even get a couple of fans. Here are some tips to make your first video a hit.
People want to see what they are learning to do. Show the trick first and sell it. Make your viewers want to learn what you are teaching by showing how impressive the final result will be. If you don’t show the full trick first, many people are going to automatically skip to the end to see it. It’s really just annoying, and you don’t want to annoy people that could potentially share your video.
Location is important here. Make sure you are in a brightly lit area, with nothing obstructing you from the camera. Place your camera on a tripod, or ask a friend to hold the camera and make sure you stay in the screen. Being able to see how the trick is actually done makes it a lot easier for your viewers to understand how to do it themselves.
Check your audio and make sure your voice is loud and clear. Most people are going to want to watch your video while they are practicing the trick. If they have to get super close to their computer to hear you, they aren’t going to have room to work with their hoop. Either make sure your mic can pick you up clearly, or edit your video and do a voice over. Also, stay away from music in the background of your tutorials. It just gets in the way, save it for your performance videos.
Using a video editor you can make a title screen, do voice overs, and show difficult movements in slow motion. There are many free programs available. Some may already be installed on your computer (Windows: Movie Maker or Mac: iMovie). Don’t be intimidad by the technology, many of these programs are easier to figure out than they look.
It can be easier to learn a trick if you break it into parts. Give tips on what helped you when you were learning this trick. Explain what you’ve noticed what other people have problems with when they are learning. If there are other things that should be learned before your tutorial is attempted, suggest it. If there are drills of movements that can be practiced to make learning your trick easier, show them.
One of the questions you may be asking when you first begin hooping is how heavy of a hoop do you want? Hoops can be made in many different weights, either by constructing with thicker tubing, or filling the tubing with water, sand, dirt, or salt.
I have a weighted hoop that I use often, mostly when I’m hooping for exercise. The heavier hoop will add resistance and work your muscles more, especially the core. You can really feel your belly work when you are chest hooping with the heavy hoop. I also find it much easier to get my heart weight up when I’m using my weighted hoop.
When I was first learning tricks, I found it was easier when my hoop was heavier. The hoop will naturally spin slower (unless you add more force, in which case even the heavy hoop will spin pretty quickly). As Newton’s Laws of Motion state: A body in motion tends to stay in motion unless acted on by an equal and opposite outside force. In other words, once you get the heavy hoop spinning on you, it will be much harder for it to fall compared to the lighter hoop. I found it much easier to learn tricks when the hoop was spinning slower and It was less likely to stop spinning.
Beware if you have back issues. You can hurt yourself hooping. When you first start hooping with a heavy hoop, you may bruise. Once you find the parts of your body where the hoop should stay, and are able to keep the hoop there, bruising will happen less. But it will happen with the weighted hoop.
Also, a lot of people don’t like filling their tubing with water or sand, because it throws off balance. Others like the fluid feel of water in their hoop.
Though many tricks will be easier to learn with the heavy hoop, mostly on-body tricks, many will be harder if not impossible with it. As many become more advanced with their hoop practice, they move to a lighter smaller hoop. Breaks more are difficult with a heavy hoop (back to the Laws of Motion), as are reversals and isolations.
In general, most hoopers feel like you should have a variety of different weights and sizes in your hoop collection. Personally, I for sure feel that my weighted hoop has it’s place in my practice, though it’s definitely not the only hoop I use.