Hula hooping new exercise

VIENNA – A different exercise will soon be available as hula hooping is moving from the playground into the yoga studio.

“What I teach is very different from what you did in the backyard as a kid,” said Angie Iafrate, owner of Mid-Ohio Valley Hoopla. “With the right instruction, hula hooping can burn up to 600 calories an hour and it doesn’t feel like exercise.”

Iafrate will teach classes from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays and from 3 to 4 p.m. on Sundays at Full Circle Yoga at 1515 Grand Central Ave., Vienna, behind the strip, beginning the first week of April.

“Hooping has become popular recently as television shows and health and beauty magazines have been featuring it as a great way to get in shape and have fun,” she said.

Iafrate said no experience in using a hula hoop or dance is required to take her classes.

“You just need to want to have fun,” she said. “The best part is that it tones the entire body and develops strength without you realizing it.’

Iafrate has been teaching classes around the area since September and received her hula hooping instructor certification by Hoopnotica, a company in Venice Beach, Calif. Iafrate has taught workshops in Vienna and Marietta and hopes to do more to get more people involved in the exercise.

Hooping involves the combination of dance elements with manipulation of an adult-sized hula hoop and helps tone the body, calm the mind, and increase energy.

“The number one reason I became involved in hooping in 2011 was because it is fun,” Iafrate said. “It doesn’t feel like you are exercising; it tricks you into working out because all you can think of is how much fun you are having.”

The classes use an adult hula hoop, which is made and provided by Iafrate.

“These aren’t your average kids’ hula hoops you can pick up at a toy store,” she said. “These are different and they make the classes different.”

Iafrate will also hold a hula hoop making workshop that will include a short class from 7 to 9 p.m. on March 16 at the Parkersburg Art Center.

For more information on the art center classes contact the center at 304-485-3859.

Space is limited for the classes and people are asked to contact Full Circle Yoga at 304-656-9854 to register.