Progress Report

hoopprogressreport

Today I had another lesson with Geri over at The Hoop Shack. I think she was happy with my progression since last time. I haven’t been putting in hours of practice every night…really, I just practice whenever I let the dogs outside or want to take a break from the computer. It helps that I work from home, but you could easily take your hoop to work and accomplish the same thing in the parking lot or a conference room. In fact, I’ve done that before too! So I end up working in a few 10-15 minute bursts of hooping throughout the day. It adds up! It’s enough for a song or two, or just skip the music and enjoy the fresh air.

I walked away with some homework. A lot. Sometimes I worry I am going to forget something that we talked about, so I make a few notes when I get home. Two big things I will be working on the next couple weeks:

1. Hip Hooping – Geri explained that this is a good foundation to build on for leg hooping. Plus, it works your abs! A lot!

2. Working on the motions for eventual chest hooping. Chest hooping frightens me a little, because right now I do not feel loose enough or graceful enough to get there. Some of our dances in Zumba involve some chest rolls, and I feel like such a nerdy girl trying to be hip. I can’t do it. Hopefully, with some practice, I’ll get there in Zumba AND in hooping.

We also did some vertical work. I was a flag in junior high through high school, so I feel like some of the motions here are similar and familiar. Still, circle vs stick. A little different.

Here’s a little flag throwback. Ah, parades….

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Mindful Monday

This tattoo is about 10 years old. People constantly ask me why I have this word tattooed on my wrist, and I always joke that it is a reminder, that sometimes I forget to breathe and then I almost die.

It’s funny, but it is sort of true. The real reason I got this tattoo was to remind me to take some time each day to pause, to meditate, to breathe. Focusing on the breath is a critical part of meditation and finding peace. Physiologically, it affects the way your body manages stress. If you are taking deep, long breaths, your body thinks it is in a calm state (even if it isn’t.) This in turn reduces stress and even pain. Stuff I learned in my biofeedback therapy for migraines! It’s science, people. Take some time to breathe.

Short-Term Hooping Goals.

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Things I am still working on this month:

1. Feeling equal in capability in both hooping directions. I am decent, but I definitely, definitely have a stronger side.

2. Lifting the hoop off my body. Sometimes it goes flying, sometimes I just don’t have the momentum to keep it spinning once it is mid-lift.

3. Putting the hoop back on my waist from halo…with my non-dominant hand. Or, basically anything with the weaker hand.

I have video of the lift-off move, I will put that up later gator. For now, just use your creative brain to imagine someone doing the move moderately-well.

The Beginning.

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leggings by tiffhoops | hoop by aroundjoy | shoes…duh

Since this is a place to document my hooping “journey,” (does that sound weird and new age-y? oh well.) I thought I would take a minute to catch you up to how I started and where I am currently.

I knew a lovely, lovely lady, who incidentally was my boss. I had taken to describing her to my stepdaughter like this: “You remember Heather…she hula hoops with FIRE??” Cuz she did.

She made me my first hula hoop. At the time, it was just a curiosity, this hula hooping thing. I soon filed it into my “ain’t nobody got time for that” list of things I wanted to try but didn’t deem important enough.

Eventually, maybe a year or 2 later, I started poking around on the internets for some hula hooping fitness classes. Enter Geri from Around Joy. I took a lesson on a Saturday with a stranger (where did you go, hula hoop stranger? where are you in your own hoop journey??) and learned some stretches and some basic skills. I brought the hoop my boss made me months earlier. I was pretty crappy at hula hooping then. But Geri was friendly, enthusiastic, and a great teacher. I left that day encouraged, but ended up practicing…not that much. More at first, and then less and less. That happens.

Then, last year, I switched jobs to something much less stressful, and it opened up my mind (and my schedule, frankly) to getting more fit. A friend and I started doing Zumba towards the end of the year, and we found the MOST AMAZING ZUMBA CLASS the world will ever know. I love to dance, so I knew that Zumba might be a good fit for me, but in this case I really do think the teacher is my main motivation for continuing on. (I’ll talk about that another time in more detail.) And, of course it helps to have a friend to keep you motivated.

Now, I am looking to bring even more activity into my routine. Oh, hello there, lonely hoop. Let’s take you out for a SPIN again (I like puns. Deal with it.) I got a hold of Geri again, and here we are. You are up to date.

I cannot say enough what a great teacher Geri is. If you are in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, she is so much fun and so motivating and encouraging! Looking forward to our next session!

Next time, I will talk about my first lesson and give an update on the skills I am working on. For now, keep practicing!

Long-Term Hooping Goals.

1. Lose some pounds.

Since I have been with my husband, I have been carrying around an extra 25 pounds. Yeesh. If I can spin some of this off (get it? get it?), I will feel much better (and much stronger.)

2. Learn all the tricks.

You know, the ones that all the hula hoopers know.

3. Find my hooping style.

I see so many different dance styles within the hula hooping community, and I am working towards finding my own personality as a hooper. This also includes fine-tuning my hooper fashion, because FUN.

4. Video-diary monthly progress.

This is the easiest way to show off what I am learning.

5. Connect with other hoopers.

Because this is how you learn.

I would like to get to the point where I am confident enough in my skills to justify purchasing one of those swanky LED light hoops. (Good to have a reward for your effort, amiright??) For now, practice, practice, practice….

Hi, and Welcome!

My name is April, and I am a hooper. Well, sort of…I’m kind of a newbie. I am here to document my progress as my skills develop and as my body grows stronger. In addition to sharing updates on my hooping diva status, I will also talk about things within the periphery of hooping, including but not limited to food, health, fit fashion, and mindfulness.

Thanks for stopping by!