Chest Hooping: The Saga Continues

Look. I know it’s only been a week since Geri showed me how to chest hoop. But in my head, I’m all “IT’S BEEN A WEEK!! HOW CAN I STILL BE STRUGGLING WITH THIS??”

I’ve taken to the YouTubes. I wanted to share a few videos that have been encouraging.

Deanne Love has a ton of tutorials that you can’t help but trip over when you are searching for some hoop help. I love the advice she gives at the end, where she talks about how it clicked for her when she changed her music and slowed the tempo down a bit. I think that works for a lot of things…try it a slightly different way, and suddenly you GOT IT.

I love, love, LOVE Jess’s tutorials. I found her YouTube channel when I stumbled upon her fangirl hoops on Etsy. She is a Texas girl, so obviously she gets bonus points. But residency aside, she has the funnest, most hilarious, brilliantly edited tutorials I have seen. She is so real and funny and awesome. I think she is especially helpful because she tells you it’s okay to look a little weird at first…once you figure out the motion, then work on your finesse.

So, after some more unsuccessful attempts today, I’ll sleep on it (call back) and keep you posted.

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Chest Ouch.

Chest hooping. #icepack #ouchie #beginner #hooper #hooping #hoopingintexas #hoopersofinstagram

A post shared by April Hopkins (@aprildesigns) on

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Between a lot of frustrating chest hoop attempts and an intense hour of Zumba yesterday, I am feeling the hurt today. I decided I had better take a rest day today, and I feel like I am being lazy. It has been so long since I have felt that way about exercise. Actually, I don’t know if I’ve ever felt that way. I used to be in pretty good shape. Through college and even after I was pretty active, lifting weights at my best and at the very least, walking a ton as my mode of transportation.

Then life and desk jobs happen, and you get older and you can’t eat just anything anymore without it affecting your body and your mood. And then you can’t even believe that you would be in pain over something as simple as…hula hooping!

Chest Hooping For Nerds.

hoopprogressreport

Oh, so ill-equipped for the chest hooping. Geri was teaching me how to chest hoop with my hands in the air like I just don’t care. She even had me try it while sitting down. Guys, that is shit is no joke. Holy crap! I cannot believe what a workout it is to get a circular tube to roll around your chest. Or even just your body. But especially your chest. Dang. I’ve got some work to do.

She has challenged me to be good at it in time for our next session (which I sneakily have not scheduled yet) so we can build on it by throwing an arm in. Or two. Or I don’t know. We’ll see how good I can get before then. I’m anticipating the appearance of some bulging back muscles within the next few weeks….

I’ll throw some videos up over the course of the next few weeks so you can see how it goes.

Whoa Dude.

 

Guys. I am totally down 5 lbs! This is definitely due to integrating hooping into my routine (and taming my sweet tooth a bit). Between that and Zumba, I am trying to do something active every day. And it is paying off! The cool thing is that with the hooping, it doesn’t feel like work and I don’t even do it very much…like I mentioned previously, I practice here and there throughout the day when I want a break from the computer screen or need to let the dogs outside.

Rock hard abs, I’m coming for ya!

Nailed It!

Guys, I think I got it! The hip hooping. I don’t know how this shit happens; the stars aligned and suddenly I was doing it. Doesn’t it feel good when that happens??

Hoopspiration

This is a great TED talk by Lisa Lottie about hula hooping and her non-traditional background. I love the performance at the beginning, first of all, because she is awesomely talented. Secondly, I LOVE when those LED hoops are synched to the music! So rad!

via hooping.org

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┬áthe 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.