Want to add a fun, effective, ‘do anywhere’ workout to stay fit this summer? Consider a weighted hula hoop workout. Yes, it’s ‘a thing.’

“Two minutes on the treadmill always felt like an eternity,” says Shelly, a full-time working mom. “Now I get a great workout, see results, and I love it.” She laughs, “I hula hoop.”

Like Shelly, fitness hooping can revolutionize your workouts as well.

Over the last decade, the weighted hula hoop has made its way into gyms and fitness studios as a full body hula hoop workout. Thanks to ACE, American Council on Exercise, and its research with the University of Wisconsin, we know that hooping is respected right up there with boot camp, cardio kickboxing or step, in cardio exercise intensity and calorie burn—450 an hour!

So, forget all you think you know about the traditional hula hoop. This is NOT the 1950’s hoop of your childhood, nor is the hula hoop workout child’s play.

Today’s fitness and adult dance weighted hula hoops are designed larger, up to 45’’, weighted from 1-5 pounds, and constructed to provide a workout for every fitness level, beginner to advanced. So, since no gym is required, why not burn vacation calories, tone your body, firm your core, increase balance, flexibility, and muscle while having fun?

Getting Started

Choose your hoop.

Even if you were not a champion hooper as a kid, no fear! Today’s hoops are larger and weighted and for most, easier to get into action. From ‘big-box stores to online shopping, they come packaged and knocked down in sections with step by step instructions for easy assembly. They are totally convenient: one model comes in its own tote case, perfect to disassemble and pack for travel.

If you’re a beginner to hooping or exercise in general, choose one lightly weighted. Be sure it includes a DVD which demos everything you need to know: assembly, the basics of stepping into your hoop and getting it into action, technique and body positioning to get the most of your work out, prevent injury, and progress your workout.

Choose your intensity.

Hooping can be modified for any intensity level. Rhythmic in nature, hooping can be almost hypnotic and relaxing. Building on fast-slow variations, positioning of the hoop on your body, adding lunges, squats, arms, core, and even dance moves all depend on your desired intensity. Remember, hoop technique and core and body positioning are key to preventing injury and getting desired results.

Online hula hoop workouts, websites and even YouTube are easy to find at every fitness level.

*Never use a weighted hula hoop if you have hip or back pain or hip/back problems.

Prior to any new workout routine, check with your doctor to be sure it’s right for you.

Choose your location.

Conveniently, all you need is space.

So, join the many celebs and people like former first lady, Michelle Obama, and start enjoying the health benefits of a hula hoop workout.

Adds Shelly still grinning, “With the weighted hula hoop, I noticed an immediately change in my middle, core, and even my thighs. It’s not only a great workout, but the best part: I don’t feel guilty about my guilty pleasure…binge watching Housewives,” she laughs. “It’s so fun!”

Need hoop ideas?

Beginner: EMPOWER 3 IN 1 WEIGHTED CORE HOOP, DVD, and detailed instructions

Travel Convenience: Weighted hula hoop with adjustable design

Advanced: Sports Hoop® – Acu Hoop® 4M – 4lb (Dia.40″) Medium, Weighted Hoop for Workout with 50 minutes Workout Lesson DVD

Check out how to begin at LIVESTRONG.

Side Note: The author has been weighted fitness hooping for a decade.

Bonus: She won a gold medal in hula hoop for her cruise ship team on game night and hoops almost daily.


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