Every Wednesday I toddle off down to my local village hall for a spot of zumba followed by powerhoop. Zumba you all know well I’m sure. Powerhoop is the latest exercise craze and it is fantastic. Grace Jones even did a bit of hooping during the Jubilee celebrations. It consists of a weighted hula hoop (roughly 4 pounds) and it is designed to improve your core strength and tighten up the muscles around your waist and hips. As a result you lose inches from your waist line. I have gone down from a 30 inch to 27 .
As you get more competent you can do dance routines and more advanced movements while spinning the hoop and it is such a great feeling (plus you feel a bit tighter in all the right areas). I have been doing it for 5 months now. To begin with I was crap but I persevered by practising lots at home. You need quite a good sized area to hoop. If you have a big house great, if it is a bit on the small side, like mine, then best go in the garden. I was banished to the garden after taking a chunk out of the living room wall and knocking the wing off Barbie’s plane.
Once classes started I had the hang of it but only just. Our teacher pushed us to do more and more challenging moves and I bruised quite badly round my pelvic bone at one point. A few other ladies in the class had the same problem and it became a competition to see who had the biggest bruises and the ones that most closely resembled a country, or even Jesus Christ – it looked a bit like a meet and greet with domestic abuse victims.
However the bruising only appears initially. Once your muscles tighten and your core strength improves you stop bruising so it is a sign that you are getting stronger which is encouraging. For a while me and my bruised class-mates were trialling various different ways to protect our midriff while hooping. The best was to wear a swimming costume . Some of us tried dressing up like michelin man by layering up but this only sent the power hoop either round our bottoms (which wasn’t comfortable at all) or round our tits – we really didn’t want to pummel those flat.
But once the bruises had healed and our muscles got tighter we were away hooping like we’ve never hooped before. One of my class-mates comes to classes in her convertible and cant fit her hoop in the boot so she ‘wears’ it while driving! A couple of times we get too close to one another in class and when the hoops touch they send you off like spinning tops.
Other negative aspects of powerhooping include the unpleasant side effect of making you want to either burp or fart depending on how far down your food has digested. You can always tell someone is suffering from this when they appear to be moving closer to the fire exit door, which we open when it gets too hot.
All shapes and sizes can powerhoop and it is particularly good for apple shaped people and pear shaped people like me – it can be likened to being a bit of clay on Patrick Swayze’s (god rest his soul) potters wheel and having him squeeze a silhouette out of you – well at least make you go in a bit more in the middle!
I highly recommend it and am also looking forward to when Jennifer Saunders and Dawn French do Powerhoop.
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