Do weighted hula hoops work?

TikTok definitely thinks so...

hula hoop

by Srushti Telang |
Updated on

The last time you must’ve hula hooped was probably when you wore those obnoxious floral clothes and shoes that flashed colours of the rainbow because it was *cool*. Basically, a long, long time ago. Most of us couldn’t do it without looking stupid while poking our hips in all directions and dropping the hoop every four seconds. If you belong outside this category, you were in a league of your own.

So, out of all things TikTok convinced us to buy, safe to say, a hula hoop was not what we expected. Well, neither were roller skates but here we are obsessed with them.

A research by PureGym in 2022 found that the activity soared in popularity and topped other fitness trends with 234.25% searches on Google.

Additionally, weighted hula hoops count many celebrities like Catherine Zeta-Jones and Beyoncé as fans.

Sounds good. But do they really work?

Here’s all you need to know about them to get started…

What is a weighted hula hoop?

As the name suggests, a weighted hula hoop is an upgraded version of a regular plastic hula hoop. They’re heavier, typically weighing between 1.5-8lbs as compared to a traditional hula hoop that weighs less than 1lbs. They’re also bigger and made of a softer material than a traditional hula hoop.

Some weighted hula hoops can also be made from different materials to add to that extra weight, while there are others that are of a smaller diameter and have a weighted ball attached to them with a string.

How to find the right weighted hula hoop for you?

Firstly, it’s important to use a weighted hula hoop that is the right size for you. The smaller and lighter the hula hoop, the more energy it will take to keep going. On the other hand, a bigger and heavier hoop will be easier to keep going with, meaning you can do it for longer.

Anyone can hula hoop. If you think you can’t, you probably tried one that’s too small. Starting with a bigger hoop is your best bet. With practice and experience, you can go smaller on the diameter and increase the weight of the hoop. You can try out different hoops to find the right size and kind for you.

How to use a weighted hula hoop?

How to use a weighted hula hoop?

Using it is quite straightforward, just as you may remember it. Good news for you, a weighted hula hoop may be much easier to use than a regular plastic one, as it's more manageable to control.

The first step is managing your form with good posture. The trick is to keep your legs apart at shoulder length and place the hoop somewhere between your waist and mid-chest. You want the hoop touching your back before you give it a head start spin with your hands, then twirl it while constantly shifting your weight forward and backwards.

This will take practice. But once you get the hang of it, you’ll have that hoop twirling endlessly and have fun with it.

Another tip is to not wear that favourite baggy t-shirt of yours while using it as it may make it harder to catch the hoop around your waist. Soz.

What are the benefits of weighted hula hoops?

Apart from the fact that it’s totally fun…

They have endless benefits, so what do they not do would be a better question to ask.

  • It helps you burn calories. Research suggests that women can burn about 165 calories from 30 minutes of hula hooping. We probably have you sold with this one already.

  • Hula hooping will strengthen your core muscles. Some of those results you achieve from your high intensity core training at the gym or other types of aerobic activities can also be achieved by simply hula hooping. Twirling a weighted hula hoop engages your core muscles, strengthening your abs, obliques, and lower back.

  • They enhance your posture and balance. A stronger core = better posture and balance. No more sitting like a shrimp. Easy does it!

  • More hip and spine flexibility. Revolving your hips in a circular motion while using a weighted hula hoop encourages more mobility in your hips and spine.

  • It also improves your lower body muscles. While you move your hips in a forward and backward movement, your quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes are also engaged in the process.

  • Enhances cardiovascular health. Once you get the hang and rhythm of using a weighted hoop, it can act as your daily cardio fix. And as we’re aware, cardio helps in increasing heart rate.

  • Lastly, it can help with your emotional and mental health. As with any form of exercise, daily use of a weighted hula hoop can directly have a positive impact on your mental health, such as depression, anxiety, and ADHD. You’re more likely to stick to exercises you enjoy and since hula hooping is a fun exercise to get your muscles working, it can indirectly also help relieve stress, boost your overall mood, and help you sleep better.

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Does weighted hula hoop tone your stomach?

For those who want to target their stomach area, weighted hula hooping is definitely a good option. However, similar to any exercise, consistency is key, and you’d have to practice it regularly for at least a week to see results.

TikToker @madd1ewalsh uploaded a video of her transformation with a weighted hula hoop and has amassed a hefty 2.7M likes. She started off on day 1 with a waist size of 26.5 inches and finished on day 8 with 24.5 inches! (We’re all ears now!)

A study also found that regular use of a weighted hula hoop was linked to a reduction in waist and hip girth.

Does a weighted hula hoop help lose weight?

As discussed in the benefits above, a weighted hula hoop helps burn calories and strengthens core muscles. With that being said, only hula hooping will not make you lose weight as there are other factors that contribute to safe weight loss, including your diet, age, medication, stress levels, and sleeping pattern.

However, if using a weighted hula hoop gets you moving more, weight loss can be one of the many results.

Which is better: weighted hula Hoops or traditional hula hoops?

Hula hooping, whether it’s a weighted or a traditional one will have similar benefits. Larger hula hoops can be easier to keep going for longer than a traditional, lighter hoop. Essentially, a lighter hoop takes more energy to spin than a weighted one.

The extra heft in a weighted hula hoop also creates more resistance that can help you tone your muscles better than a typical plastic one. You can add a weighted hula hoop to your exercise to add more variety to it or simply as a fun way to incorporate exercise into your routine.

How often should I use weighted hula hoops?

Regularly using a weighted hula hoop is generally good practice. Start off with a few minutes a day and build up to a longer duration as you go. Bruising is very common when you first start, so don’t push yourself from the get-go. Ultimately, how often you use it all depends on individual preferences and goals.

Who shouldn't use a weighted hula hoop?

People with any medical condition, especially a history of breathing or back problems, should first consult with a doctor before using a weighted hula hoop. Immediately stop hula hooping and seek medical attention in case you experience pain or other symptoms.

Other than that, using a weighted hula hoop is relatively safe as long as you choose the right one with a weight that is appropriate for your strength.

And with that, happy hooping!

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