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Great Stuff!

There's loads of great stuff out there to enhance your physical and spiritual health. Every two weeks, All Spirit Fitness brings you something we've found useful. Sometimes it's a brand new fitness tool, sometimes it's an everyday item that you can find at the store. Whatever it is, rest assured that if it's on this page, we think it's great!


Hooping

dance hoop workout
This Dance Hoop Workout is available through Gaiamicon

In case you haven't noticed, the hula-hoop has been making a comeback in the past few years. Once the fodder for kitschy 1950s photo montages, hooping is fast becoming a fun exercise form for those who are tired of getting their cardio from health club machines or traditional cardio dance classes. Here are just a few of the benefits of hooping:
  • It's a great calorie burner. Some sources say you can burn up to 100 calories in as little as 10 minutes. That makes it a great cardiovascular exercise too.
  • It also helps tone your body, especially your lower body and your core. Your arms even come into play.
  • It's a low impact workout.
  • It's a great stress buster. Once you're in the groove of hooping, how can you not smile?
  • It helps develop concentration and focus
  • It's a real mind-body exercise that connects you to your own internal rhythm

If you ever hula hooped as a child with any amount of success, chances are you will pick it up pretty quickly as an adult. But there are some things you should keep in mind:

  1. There are a few different styles of hoops around. Most hoops are weighted to a certain extent, which will help you control the movement. But the heavier the hoop, the more likely you are to get bruised the first few times you try it. If you do get bruised, take a break for a few days to heal. You'll get acclimated soon enough.
  2. The more proficient you become at hooping, the more efficient your moves will be and, yes, the fewer calories you will burn. This is true of any cardio exercise, really. The trick is to keep challenging yourself by finding more creative hooping techniques. Don't worry — even when you're an expert, you'll still burn calories!
  3. Be careful if you have nipple or belly button piercings. You may want to keep them well covered and protected while you're hooping.
  4. Hooping is meant to be fun, so don't stress out if the hoop keeps falling down the first few times you try. It does take practice to get it down, but once you do, you'll enjoy it.

There are a lot of hooping resources on the web, but one of the best is probably hooping.org

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