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16 Things I Learned At My First Hula Hoop Workout

Get hip to the hoop.

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Jenny Chang / BuzzFeed

1. You can't not get excited about hulahooping for an hour.

Instagram: @chelspipp

I may be uncoordinated, I may be awkward, but hell yes I am excited for a playground-themed workout at London Fields Fitness to shake up the middle of my work day.

2. Hooping is the next exercise craze in London.

HulaFit is cheap, fun, and local, offering classes every week throughout London, all for under 10 pounds.
Facebook: HULAFITUK

HulaFit is cheap, fun, and local, offering classes every week throughout London, all for under 10 pounds.

3. The class has a killer soundtrack.

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Britney, Beyonce, and Bruno Mars = the ultimate hooping pump-up.

4. Hooping is a legit full-body workout.

Over the course of the hour long class, you'll work your legs and abs hard, plus tone up your arms and get some cardio in. And it's actually pretty fun!
Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed

Over the course of the hour long class, you'll work your legs and abs hard, plus tone up your arms and get some cardio in. And it's actually pretty fun!

5. Weighted hoops are the way to go.

Instagram: @photographicblonde

A heavier hoop amps up the resistance on your abs. For newbies, it's best to use a larger, lighter hoop.

6. Anna, the instructor, is motivating and easy to learn from.

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And can also pull off dressing like a blue smurf better than just about anybody.

7. And my classmates were really supportive.

My class was full of ladies of all ages and varying experience with hooping. It was such a fun and encouraging environment, and all of the girls were super helpful! The hooper to my right told me not to worry, she couldn't do anything at all her first day, while the seasoned pro to my left gave me some helpful tips about keeping the hoop going (lock your abs!)
Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed

My class was full of ladies of all ages and varying experience with hooping. It was such a fun and encouraging environment, and all of the girls were super helpful! The hooper to my right told me not to worry, she couldn't do anything at all her first day, while the seasoned pro to my left gave me some helpful tips about keeping the hoop going (lock your abs!)

8. Hooping's not just for the ladies!

You can book for a class with HulaFit instructor Rowan, who brings his experience in boxing and weight-training into the mix.
Facebook: HULAFITUK

You can book for a class with HulaFit instructor Rowan, who brings his experience in boxing and weight-training into the mix.

9. The first time can be a little disorienting.

I simultaneously felt like a toddler and a belly dancer.
Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed

I simultaneously felt like a toddler and a belly dancer.

10. Hooping is all about your bum and tum.

Use those abs to keep the momentum up, and dip your bum to catch it as it falls.
Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed

Use those abs to keep the momentum up, and dip your bum to catch it as it falls.

11. So you're basically doing squats and crunches the whole hour.

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FEEL THE BURN!

Also holding your abs trying not to laugh at yourself helps.

12. There's a lot of different ways to use a hoop.

Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed
Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed
Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed

During my class, we used the hoops plenty for their "traditional" purpose, but we also used them to balance during body-weight exercise, to mark jumping points, and to create a cardio circuit.

13. The secret to full body hooping is picturing yourself as a "sexy octopus."

Totally serious.
Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed

Totally serious.

14. I wasn't nearly as bad at as I expected.

But I haven't tapped into my inner sexy octopus quite yet, sadly.
Matthew Tucker / BuzzFeed

But I haven't tapped into my inner sexy octopus quite yet, sadly.

15. I can't wait until I can do this:

Instagram: @laurawelthy

This girl is the SEXIEST octopus.

16. Don't be intimidated, anybody can hoop!

*With lots of practice.

Check out the HulaFit website and Anna's page to find a class near you.