Powerhooping – Day 15
In my primary school playground, we had the skipping girls and the hula girls. Back in those days when I had a pelvic floor, I was a skipping girl. This wasn’t a gang warfare situation: we all got on but we had a playground preference. I could never get the hang of hula hoop, so I avoided it. In private moments, I have had a few sneaky tries with my daughter’s hoop, but to no avail. I would just get spotted by the family and ridiculed. I simply can’t hula. However, I was made aware of a powerhoop class by Dianne from FunFit and in the spirit of relinquishing my dignity and facing childhood demons; I decided to give it a go.
The first challenge was Dianne told me to wear two tight fitting tops for the class. I avoid tight fitting tops as much as possible, so I had to go to the outer depths of my “tops drawer.” It is a dark and desolate area of the wardrobe, which rarely sees the light of day. I pulled out a crumpled old gym top and discovered that if you don’t wear a top for 4 or 5 years, it shrinks with isolation and neglect. It was never that tight before!
Dianne introduced me to the ladies in the class. They ranged in age and ability, with the younger, fitter, more able girls in the front, progressing to the back with the older and less fit ladies. I was familiarised with the powerhoop, which was a fairly heavy, thick and ridged hoop, with rainbow patterning that made it look inviting. But reading the disclaimer about mild bruising alerted my suspicions.
It was a hot evening, so the doors were opened and I tried a bit of practising before the class started. The idea was to get the right foot forward, heel on the floor, swing the hoop so it’s level and then thrust back and forward. Off I went. Foot forward, swing and then air, dry-hump like mad; round once, round twice and then bang on the floor. This continued a few times and I had flashbacks to the playground and yearned for my skipping rope.
With all of my challenges, I go in determined to do my best and pay respect to whatever I take on but I couldn’t shake the thought that I would never “get it.” The class started with a warm-up, which was blatantly unnecessary as we were all sweating already. Part of the warm-up involved using our arms to hold the hoop in the air and I could really feel them ache as this point. Then on to the hooping part. Dianne encouraged me to continue practising as the others went through the steps, whilst I interrupted the music every 10 seconds with a loud bang as I lost the hoop to the floor. Thankfully, I wasn’t the only one.
We then went through sequences which are recognisable in other gym classes and I was relieved that it wasn’t all hooping. After some grapevines and steps, another hooping track came on and I awaited the inevitable hoop, hoop, bang. I swivelled the hoop the first time and roll the drums, toot the horns, it went round and around and around and then bang to the floor. Utter success, it went around three times! Immediately, I picked it up again and again I did a few more rotations. I got it! I couldn’t believe it! Stuff the skipping rope, I was a hula girl!
Sometimes, the small wins are the great wins. I burnt some calories, met some nice people and I learnt to powerhoop. Give me a bit of mild bruising any day - I’ve smashed a croquet mallet into my own leg, I can deal with it!
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