I started the 30/30 Hooping Challenge on January 8th with hundreds of other hoop dancers from all over the world. We checked in daily at Hooping.org and it was great to see how many of us kept at it. The challenge was to hoop for at least thirty minutes every day for thirty days straight. I can say that I hooped every day but there were a couple of days when I missed the thirty minute mark by a ways which meant I was out of the running for the shiny prizes Hooping.org offered, but I continued to post on that forum about my daily hoop practice throughout the thirty days.
On the first of those days on which I missed my goal, I managed to get in about fifteen minutes, fully confident I’d have plenty of time to finish up later. One thing led to another and I didn’t get it done. The other day that I came up short was an unusually busy day for me. I had meetings and appointments and a concert that night. I got about five minutes in before I was interrupted and never got back to it. This experience taught me that in my world it works best to ‘just do it’. There are going to be a million other things calling my name and asking for my attention. When I make my hoop practice a priority the rest of it really can wait half an hour.
The official challenge ended on February 6th. Since then, I’m feeling grounded again in the daily hoop habit that I practiced for many months when I first started hooping in August 2009. It feels good getting up in the mornings knowing that I will hoop that day. I have gotten into a habit of planning when I will hoop, what I want to work on and which music will make the experience even more fun.
As for the benefits I realized over the 30/30 Challenge, I’ve was able to master a couple of moves that I have struggled with for the longest time, I can now toss the hoop straight up and catch the hoop most of the time. My elbow hooping is much more consistent, I’m more comfortable with my shoulder hooping and reversals. My outflow (hooping in the direction that feels less natural) is much stronger in most of the moves, too, which is so important to me because I hoop to the right and the great majority of the population, including almost every student I’ve taught, naturally hoops to the left.
As a teacher I encourage my students to establish a regular hooping practice in order to see improvement in their abilities and changes in their bodies. It has long been stated that people learn more from what we do than they ever do from what we say. So I’m happy to be an example of what it looks like to have a daily hoop practice and some of the benefits that come with it. What could be a shinier prize than feeling better and looking better and looking and feeling better in the spring and summer clothes we’ll be wearing in just a couple of months.
Did you do the 30/30 Hooping Challenge? If not, have you established a daily hoop practice? If so, I’d love to hear from you about it.