Kate’s hula hooping diary WEEK 1 My lesson with Obie, who’s a professional hula hoop teacher, is amazing! Her enthusiasm is infectious and, with her help, I’m soon hula hooping away for, well, not long, but it stays up for a bit. I leave the lesson with an aim to hula hoop for 10 minutes and want to practise at home but our flat’s too small, so I drag my boyfriend to the park a few times a week. I’m using a weighted hoop, which is easier to keep up – but it bruises my hips so I move on to a normal, lighter hoop, which definitely takes more work.
as I’m hooping, meaning I’m working my legs too, which is a really impressive trick!
OBIE’S TOP TIPS
I go back to my hometown in South Africa for a wedding. My boyfriend is surprised to see me folding and packing BOTH my hoops. But it’s sunny there, we’ll be outdoors and with friends – the perfect time to practise. I spend one day by the pool, sunbathing, chatting… and teaching my friends to hula. We hardly notice we’re working out and by the end of the holiday I’m keeping the hoop up for seven minutes at a time.
Obie Campbell is a Hoop Tone instructor. Find online tutorials and more at hooptone.com. Pick a hoop that’s hip height, or you won’t be able to control it. Channel your inner child and don’t be embarrassed to fail – practise makes perfect! Ready to start? Stand legs hip-width apart, tuck in your belly button and squeeze your bum. This will ensure a strong core to help you keep the hoop moving. Give the hoop a good shove to one side, push your hips forward and GO! Don’t move side to side; gently move your hips backwards and forwards to keep the hoop going. Look up, not down, and keep breathing or the hoop will drop. Practise in both directions. You’ll naturally have a direction that’s more natural for you, but you should aim to master both. Practise four or more times a week; it’ll help tone your abs, bum and thighs, and improve your core strength too.
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WEEK 2 I keep reminding myself of Obie’s tips as I hula: move back to front (not side to side), keep breathing and look up. I’m soon building up to four or more minutes. It’s exhausting, but I love that I’m feeling fitter all the time. I watch a few online videos to inspire me further and I’m soon hooping on my arms, too – which is easier than it looks. I even turn
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I’m nearly there! I go to the park with my bestie one Sunday and manage to hula hoop for 10 whole minutes. It feels so good. I now ofcially love hula hooping. My core feels stronger, my arms are more toned and I’ve laughed so much too. I’m continuing with this – I’m now a hula girl…
The get-fit kit Dumbbells 1kg £3; 2kg £4.50; 3kg £6. Available in selected stores
Kate wears: Stripe print crop top £8 606-7491 and leggings £10 603-3111 (each available in sizes XS-XXL); Jersey knit runner trainers £12. All F&F
Hula hooping is easier than you’d think and makes for a great workout. It’s fun too, which is a big plus for me. Online videos inspire me to aim for new targets and keep me motivated.
Core balance fitness hula hoop £12.99 teal 678-8591 purple 167-7362. Available from
Yoga mat £6. Available in
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