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What is Hula Hooping? Community Perspective

What is Hooping? An exploration for the reasons we pursue our passion.

Every hooper has a story, a passion, a different drive, a reason for doing what they do.

We were recently asked to write an article and title it “What is hooping?”. When I was first presented this project my head immediately began to spin. What is hooping? That’s such a deep and powerful question, how was I ever going to get that into words? To me hooping so much more than dance, or a sport. It is strength. It is growth, it is recovery, its self-expression. However, to many of you hooping may be so much more than that. Every hooper has a story, a passion, a different drive, a reason for doing what they do. We set out to find out exactly what is hooping? What does it mean to you? The following are some of the powerful responses we got:



“Hooping means the world to me”

OmKat 1“Hooping means the world to me. It’s a source of wellness and inspiration, an outlet and expression. It’s a connection to the community. Hooping is my purpose and my service in this life. Hooping means playtime, healing, laughter, joy, frustration, learning, and expansion. It is my job, my life, my focus –
Hooping is love.” –Deanne Love

“It’s about having something that is just mine. After having kids I never made time for myself, it was a way I could work out and have the creative outlet I needed to find myself again. It has given me the confidence to make new friends and grow our own local flow community. Many doors I thought were closed and many I didn’t even know existed have opened since I began my journey.” -Kaity J

“I fought depression… when I first found the unity of the hula Hooper’s, it was like even though I am alone, I have never felt that way. My Facebook is flooded with hula hoops and positive vibes. I feel like we are a family. Hula hooping has helped me a lot with grieving and changed my outlook on life during the hardest points in my life and I am so grateful.” -Elaura D

“The PTSD and anxiety attacks NEVER end it seems. Until a few months ago when I picked up my first hoop. I naturally took to it and it felt like for a moment, everything stopped. No thoughts of fear or anxiety, no melancholy within a mile radius. It was like everything was normal again, even though when I put my hoop down the stress comes rushing back after a while, it is the only freedom I have found – it relieves me from my troubles, like a getaway.” -Kamiryn S

“Hooping to me is, a life saver! Before hooping I weighed over 260lbs. I’m currently now at 140lbs! Also I have psoratic arthritis and my range of motion is at a place I never thought I could be at. It also helped me with my ADHD!” -Kashmir S


“I have anxiety problems. Health issues. Post traumatic stress. The works. I had ran out of things to do for just me. Early this year my older brother asked me to go to a local studio to take pictures with him of the hoopers in our community. I went with just to see. I was absolutely mesmerized by the beauty in the dance and movement and sheer energy these people harnessed. My wonderful boyfriend knew I had been struggling and finally sat me down and encouraged me to do something for myself and before I could even get my brain to agree with the idea, my hands were already ordering my first hoop online. When it came it was like drinking water for the first time. I fell in love!!!!!! I couldn’t put it down! … As if a toddler had been given a new toy they’d never discovered before. Just holding it. Feeling it. Tracing it. And eventually I started to spin and play and by the end of the night I was laughing and twirling and feeling free. Now I take my hoop with me everywhere I can. Its my passion. My safety net. And even though I’m still learning and I’m not amazing at every trick and look like a special penguin when I try to shoulder hoop, I still feel free and beautiful and amazing and safe and confident. And these are things I’ve hardly ever felt before let alone all at once.” -Katherine R

I was absolutely mesmerized by the beauty in the dance and movement

What Is Hooping

“What does hooping mean to me? Hooping is everything to me. Hooping is my confidence, hooping is my stress reliever, hooping is the single thing I can always count on. Like many beautiful people I have severe generalized anxiety. Some of the stupidest things will sent me off for days! I was finally able to get myself out of that dark place when I started hooping. More often than not people don’t understand why I dance with a “child’s toy” but I have found something that makes me feel beautiful and gives me meaning! And that’s why I hoop.” -Arianna M


“It’s my little world. It’s the world where I am invincible. I see myself as this flowing goddess with limitless motion. It’s the swiftness the flow, the love. Something so simple as once referred to a child’s toy is now one of my priceless escapes. It’s where I dance, it’s where I become one with the energy released in music and sound… Its apart of my soul always.” -Shelby G.

“Best exercise I’ve found as a person who suffers from fibromyalgia.” -Michelle G

It’s my little world. It’s the world where I am invincible.

“Getting home from a long night and grabbing a hoop and just letting go. Listening to great music that just lets you forget the world around you for a moment. It’s about you, your ideas, your thoughts, your strengths, your body. Hoops are a reason to just let go and feel the energy around you. For me, hooping reminds me to keep it simple, happy, fun and to relax.” -Kayla O.

“Hooping gave me grace and confidence. It brought me out of my shell and gave me space in which to dance and move freely. It is my exercise and my meditation. It is my livelihood and my joy. Hooping has brought me friends, family and bliss.” -Tuesday E.

While writing this article we were so moved by the responses we got. Throughout history and up into modern times hooping has touched the lives of countless souls. It’s something that brings us together while helping us to connect deeply to who we really are. Hooping has become an integral part of so many people’s lives. Hoop culture has grown immensely in recent years with the emergence of hooping retreats and classes, custom designed hoops and hooping clothing. The possibilities really are limitless once you step into the circle. Hooping truly is universal and infinite.


Written By: Maranda Hucal & Deborah Callahan Buffum