I first started hula hooping in 2013, as a way to deal with my anxiety and depression in college, while also doing something healthy and active. Since then, hooping has become such a major part of my life and actually changed it in several ways. So I wanted to write a blog post about a few of the ways hooping has changed my life for the better.
Feeling more Free
Growing up, I was always a pretty shy person who mostly kept to myself. I often dreamed of dancing or singing and performing on stage, but I never had the guts and didn't feel like I had anything worthwhile to offer, performance art wise. I was actually a part of my high school orchestra, but I wasn't passionate about it and didn't practice with my violin enough to be good enough to sit in a section on stage that was visible from the audience. When I started hooping, I finally felt like I could go outside or to a studio and just dance my heart out. I finally had a way to express myself that felt so natural and fun.
Having a Way to Stay Active
I've always loved being physically active. I tried several sports throughout my childhood but never stuck with them for one reason or another, usually because my dad preferred I focus on my schoolwork or violin playing and my mom preferred I focus on styling my hair or nails. Hooping gave me a fun way to stay active and play outside while I was in college, since I felt as if it were too late to try to get back into sports at that point. In fact, hooping even inspired me to be active in other ways, such as yoga, and more recently, swimming, which was my favorite activity as a kid.
Making More Friends
Before hooping, I often had a hard time making new friends. I was shy and awkward, didn't really have any activities I loved, and often just wasn't sure how to connect with others. Hooping is a great way to connect with other people, and while I certainly don't like every single hooper I've met, it's a great way to start a conversation with someone and connect over a common interest. I've met some of the most amazing people and friends I've now had for years, all thanks to our love for plastic circles! And after creating my hoop troupe, Celestial Flow Tribe, we started hosting spin jams, which has given me an amazing platform to connect with my local flow arts community and meet people I've only spoken to online. Of course there are spin jams in lots of other cities too, which is awesome for those who love to solo travel.
Having More Opportunities to Travel
This kind of goes along with making more friends, but through hooping, I've been able to connect to people all over the country. And sometimes this can be a great opportunity to travel. I've had friends I met online welcome me into their home who live all the way across the country, all because of hooping! In a lot of cases, be able to stay at someone's home was what enabled me to be able to afford to make these trips happen. I hope to take more advantage of traveling opportunities going forward, because I dream of being able to teach hooping around the world, like I see so many amazing flow artists getting to do. Over the past few years, traveling has become another passion of mine, and I know this to be true for many other hoopers as well. So take advantage of every opportunity you can, you never know if you might get the chance to perform at a festival on the other side of the country or teach a workshop series across the world.
Being Able to Perform on Stage
Of course I had to include performing on this list. It's something I used to dream of being able to do as a child, and I never thought back then that I would be able to not only perform on stage, but often get paid quite well to do so. I've stepped back from performing a bit in the last couple of years, but I still appreciate all of the performance opportunities I've had and continue to have. My longing to perform even brought me to create my own hoop troupe, which has taught me so much about the entertainment industry, working with others, and even myself. Being on stage is such a rush, and I know it's a dream for so many people because it's one of the top questions I get on social media and therefore the topic of several of my YouTube videos. My younger self would be so proud to see me being able to do so many of the things I do now!
I think you could ask any hooper if hooping has changed them for the better and they'd say yes. Hula hooping is such a fun activity that can give you a sense of community and self-expression. It can be a great way to stay active or an awesome side hustle, it can be a way to make new friends or a way to perform at festivals you love. This blog post doesn't even go into the other opportunities hooping has given me, such as modeling gigs, having more self-confidence and being able to share hooping with my family members aboard. I love hooping so much and am grateful everyday for finding it and being able to share it with people all over the world via social media and this blog.
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