Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Unplug and get real

I am generally a very positive person and it's a rule in our house to never use the word "hate". So, while I sometimes feel the need to use this word out of societal habit when we dislike something, it's a rule we've created to keep ourselves in check as parents as well. So, as I write this next post, I will be stating my "strong dislike" of a few things. But, I promise to end it on a positive note! :)

Since I have grown to love the mobility of my body and all it can do, thanks to my hoop, I have grown a strong dislike of any type of virtual exercise. I'm sure it serves a purpose for those who are really unwilling to get off the couch, that to make it a sort of video game makes it more appealing, but doesn't it just encourage people to be "near" the couch? Especially our children, who should be outside breathing fresh air into their lungs? Why does physical activity have to go virtual?

We have a Wii. It's almost a year old. We've played a game on it a total of 3 times, all of those times within the first month we had it. I must admit, it felt weird. We are used to moving around more, propelling our bodies forward, paying attention to our body and our surroundings instead of intently focusing on a TV screen. Our children never ask to play the Wii. Perhaps it's because when they say they're bored, we tell them to go outside.

So, having said that, it brings me to my whole point of this post ... hooping on the Wii. First and foremost, Hooping on the Wii is NOT hooping. I refuse to hoop on the Wii. To me, it's like "fake" hooping. It's like driving a racecar for real, and then driving an arcade version. Once you experience the open road, there is no substitute. Students who have "Wii hooped" and then take my class, are amazed how dis-similar they really are. I think because of this, I have a superior strong-dislike for any type of virtual exercise. I have hooped in the rain, the cold and in a small room and I plan to hoop in our first snowstorm. I don't think there is any sense of liberation in front of a TV screen.

For example, ask any true-runner if they prefer to run on the treadmill or run on the open road. They will all tell you the open road without a single thought about it. We see them running in the rain and freezing cold. Why? Because they didn't find their soul on the treadmill, they found it on the open road with it's unexpected bumps and potholes and hills to climb. They run harder, better, and faster than they ever do on the "fake" road. And when a runner hurts themselves, is it on the treadmill? Heck no, it's on the road, it's on the trail or it's in a race - because that's when they're putting it all out there.

So, the same with hooping. A hooper does not "Wii Hoop" because we can't learn, we can't spin, we can't toss, we can't get hoop bruises and learn from them. We can't be "one with our hoop". Simply put, hooping is about unplugging and getting real. No batteries or wireless connection required. And with that, I will end this post with a positively strong dislike for living a day without a bit of real, unplugged hooping!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Pigs Are Flying (or in my case, hooping ...)

I really thought it would be a cold day in hell when I started a blog. That it would happen when pigs flew ... and here I am, determined to share my hooping insights with the world through a blog.

I know many people who blog. They blog about this and that. Many blog well, many do not, but I still read them. So, from many requests to do so, I created my blog page months ago, and it sat there empty. But, now I am finding that even if one or two people read this, it's worth it. I am a firm believer in world peace from the center of a hula hoop and perhaps from blogging about it, I can transfer that peace around a bit.

It's been a really busy hooping season. I found no time to Hoop outside of class instruction - and I found that my mood has suffered for it. I also found that when I don't hoop outside of teaching class, I don't teach as well. So, even though I hoop 12 - 13 hours a week from teaching hoop class, I have vowed to hoop at least an hour every week on my own; even if it is in bits and pieces. It's necessary for many reasons - mostly for the people who live with me!

I made a list of 10 things I feel when I hoop today. It felt good to do that - it reinforced how much I love it. Hooping allows me to be "self-centered" without guilt. I feel "me" and it allows me to let go and be free. It's meditative. I may not be able to get the world to revolve around me, but darn it all, my hoop does and it likes it!

See, the hoop is a funny thing. It comes alive when it is on my body - it listens to me and more importantly, I listen to it. Where in life can you find such a perfect relationship? Such agreed upon give and take? Nowhere. Only within the hoop.

So, yes, pigs are not only flying; in my world, they're hooping too. I'm sharing my hoopjoy in written form for you to view, ridicule and even comment on. Or, to make fun of at a party. I'm out there now. My hoop told me to do it ... and it wants me to tell you all the things I do with it. So, I'll be back. Thanks for reading my first post.