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Fads, by definition, are supposed to come and go quickly, then be made fun of mercilessly by later generations (i.e. pet rocks, mullets, and pogs). However, one fad is making a roaring comeback: the hula hoop!

While the humble hoop has been around for millennia, the modern plastic circle we all know and love got its start in the late 1950s. Classic toy-makers from the Wham-O company took inspiration from Australian bamboo “exercise hoops,” and began aggressively marketing them to children.

Now, Guys and gals of all ages are stepping back into the past and making it hip to hoop again. In the last four years the round and roly-poly device has been quickly gathering  a new generation of fans and avid hooping enthusiasts. Even Michelle Obama was caught hooping back in 2009 at a Healthy Kids Fair on the White House’s front lawn.

The reasons for the hooping resurgence are different for everyone. Some like to be flashy, breaking out tricks without dropping the hoop as they spin in circles, walk, move the hoop up and down their bodies, and even start spinning multiple hoops at the same time. For those who like to be really flashy, there’s firehooping, which is exactly as it sounds, hooping with a burning hoop.

Some do it as a great ab workout. “I have seen visible results in my body in a short amount of time,” claimed one hooper on a Facebook fan group dedicated to hooping. Some do it for the social aspects, like Brandy Reeves. “It’s fun to be able to make hoops and hoop with my friends. And I’m learning new tricks all the time and that makes it even more fun.” Others have found meditative qualities in hooping. “The thing I like most about it,” said one enthusiast, “is just closing my eyes and listening to music while feeling the hoop. It’s sort of meditation and dance all rolled into one.”

Further celebrating the return of the craze, studios designed specifically for hula hooping classes, parties, and fun are popping up across the country, like Hooprama in Nashville, TN. Not only do they have four levels of classes, but they also teach budding hoopers how to make their own hoops. They even sell supplies such as tubing and connectors, as well as a variety of bright colored ribbons, cutesy decorated tape, and glow-in-the-dark materials. Though their website is under construction, you can still get contact information for them at www.hoopsupplies.com.

Or find your own local studio and have a hooping good time!

www.Dishmag.com / Issue 182 - September 2018
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