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Hooping away the hips

Once thought to be a child's toy, hoops are used by adults as an exercise tool

Once thought to be a child's toy, hoops are used by adults as an exercise tool

December 15, 2008|By MIKKEL WALLECH / For The Herald-Mail

HEDGESVILLE, W.Va. - Sometimes vigorous play is the best way to accomplish some serious fitness work. Case in point: the hula hoop.

The hula hoop is making a comeback among fitness-conscious adults. The hula hoop is being used in the Tri-State area as a fun and unique tool to tone bodies and get people active.

Melody Robinson and her daughter, Stephanie Connell, 22, of Hedgesville, W.Va., have been selling hula hoops at Boomtown Hoops since 2004. They said hula hooping is catching on again because it offers not only physical benefits, but it is fun to do.

"People love it," Connell said. "They are not only reminded of their childhood, but they enjoy the full workout they get from hooping. Hooping is great for core strengthening, abs, glutes, arms - pretty much everything."

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The mother-and-daughter team make all of the hoops they sell. They also teach hooping classes two days a week and said they get people of all ages exercising, some of whom haven't exercised in years.

"We get people who haven't worked out in years coming to our classes. It's great," said Connell. "We do aerobics, hoop tricks, and then end with a gratitude circle, where we say what we are thankful for. People really seem to enjoy it."

Stephanie credited hooping for her mother's own personal weight loss.

"My mother lost 35 pounds in four months," said Connell. "She combined a proper diet with hooping. She is really an example of how much hula hooping can aid in the weight loss process."

Connell also said they have had so many children interested in hooping that in January they will begin offering new classes.

"We are going to offer children's classes in January because so many kids want to hoop," Connell said. "They see all the tricks you can do with the hoops and they get really excited. It's a lot of fun for them."

According to Connell, hula hooping as exercise is here to stay.

"Hooping is a great way to have fun and exercise at the same time," Connell said. "I really think it's just getting started."

Call Boomtown Hoops at 540-664-7997 or go to BoomtownHoops.com.

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