So, I’m one of those ‘I’ve never been sporty’ kind of people. I occasionally enjoy a long walk or a new-years-resolution-induced stint at the gym, but I’ve never really stuck at a sport. I went to ballet as a child, but my Mum and grandparents eventually found themselves dragging me to classes until finally, I quit. Of course, through the retrospective lens of adulthood, I wish I had kept it up. But I resigned myself to quitter’s status and never gave much thought to sport again. Until…
A few months back, a couple of my friends signed up to a hoop-dance class; out of curiosity, I went along. At the time, it never crossed my mind that I would continue attending. I just wanted to see what hooping was like. As with the many introductory classes I’ve attended (but never pursued), the first class was a lot of fun. We learned a few cool tricks and I found my self caught up in a rush of initial excitement. I assumed that, as usual, this deceptive enthusiasm would pass. However, within a week I had purchased my first hoop so that I could practice at home.
When people talk about hooping they often mention ‘flow’and that is exactly what I felt.
To me, the ‘hooping flow’ wasn’t just the movement of a particular routine, but something which perpetuated into my everyday life. I wanted to practice; I gained momentum. Some weeks I practised several times and attended classes. For someone who was never sporty, this felt like a fantastic achievement.
At this point, I am by no means an expert (not even close), I still enjoy classes and have a lot to learn. For some reason, hooping is something which I can’t help but stick at. I’ve found my flow; I pick up my hoop whenever I’m bored or I can’t concentrate on uni work. I have a great teacher and follow some amazing hoopers on Instagram – I’m determined to practice until, one day, I’m as good as them.
On top of this, hooping is proving its benefits. I’m proud of my dedication and feel a sense of accomplishment each week after class. But even more exciting is the sense of energy I’ve gained from regularly doing something active. Hooping has certainly reduced my stress levels and made me feel like everything is running a little more smoothly. Hoop-dance has given my usually sloth-like self a sense of hope for an active future. I’m sure that spinning round in circles to music is not for everyone, but I’d certainly recommend giving it a try!