Well, Hula Hoops are back, widening a new verb, hooping, and gyring a new focus, Hoopercize. In other words, Hula Hoops aren’t just for fun anymore, although Hoopercize teacher Jody Williams would argue with that statement. "It’s so much fun, you forget you’re exercising," she says.
Williams, 39, is certainly not a child of the Hula Hoop fad of the 1950s. She got her first hoop a year or so ago, after her brother, musician Harold Griffin, noticed some girls hooping at a music festival in New York. "He came over, and we made some hoops out of irrigation tubing," says Williams. This is not the light, child-size hoop on sale in toy stores; Williams is talking about an adult-size hoop with some heft to it that makes spinning the sphere around a circling torso a lot easier.She started playing with her hoop, looking online for hooping tricks, practicing intermittently. Then she suffered a herniated disk and stopped all exercise for five months. This fall, Christy Leichty, author of Dream of the Marionettes, a musical produced at Cite des Arts, invited Williams to Hula Hoop as part of the carnival that preceded the play.
"That’s when I really started practicing," says Williams. "I’d never Hula Hooped in public." She improved her technique to intermediate. "I’m not a Hula master," she says. She noticed she lost weight, 10 to 15 pounds in two months. "I had tons more energy, and I felt great. It helped my back. The worst pain I have now is if I have to bend over and pick up the hoop."
So she sent out a question on Facebook (remember this is not your mother’s Hula Hoop) and suddenly found herself facing a hooping class. Nine women hooped it up at an inaugural class at Camellia House, in early December. This week, Williams begins teaching a larger class at The Alamo, the new art/studio space on Simcoe.
Williams built her routine on some dance steps. There are also elements of rhythmic gymnastics. These days, she says, she doesn’t want to dance without her hoop. And by the way, if you’re looking for mastery, check out Williams’ 5-year-old son, Basil, circling four hoops simultaneously on Facebook. As ever, 1959 or 2010, the little kids could always Hula Hoop better.
To sign up for Jody Williams’ Hoopercize class, call her at 781-6154, or contact her through Facebook. Williams' instructional skills are good enough to turn staff writer Mary Tutwiler into a seasoned hoopster (see video below).
School board members Mark Babineaux, Hunter Beasley and Tehmi Chassion can vote to fire Cooper — because we all know that’s exactly what they’ll do.
District 2 school board candidate Simon Mahan is hoping to unseat first-term incumbent and former Carencro Mayor Tommy Angelle in the Nov. 4 election.
District Attorney Mike Harson is showing his desperation by falsely attributing quotes to his opponent and blocking journalists from his social media.
Three bedroom Acadian or a two bedroom town home
Ready to geaux in purple and gold
The governor is traveling the country laying the groundwork for a possible 2016 presidential campaign, but his approval ratings at home hover well below 50 percent.
State District Judge Bob Downing extended the order and delayed a planned Wednesday hearing about a permanent injunction while negotiations continue between Attorney General Buddy Caldwell and the waste disposal site operator.
New Louisiana higher education commissioner Joseph Rallo will be paid more than his predecessor.
The recently established Downtown Lafayette Restaurant & Bar Association will host a special viewing of the upcoming New Orleans Saints taking on the Carolina Panthers in the open air of Parc Sans Souci on Thursday, Oct. 30.
Belief in a national outbreak of the Ebola zombie virus is becoming more of a threat every day, and The Hayride — Louisiana’s one true bastion for unrelentingly conservative political commentaries — thought it wise to share a certain special someone's “important message” with readers Tuesday on what to do when, not if, it comes.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Elijah McGuire and Alonzo Harris each had four rushing touchdowns, and Louisiana-Lafayette rolled to 419 yards on the ground in a 55-40 victory over Arkansas State on Tuesday night.
Bill and Hillary Clinton are the validators-in-chief for Democrats struggling through a bleak campaign season in states where President Barack Obama is deeply unpopular.
JPMorgan Chase is giving $1 million to Louisiana's community and technical colleges, to help with workforce training efforts to match students to available jobs.
President Barack Obama is turning to black radio listeners to plead for midterm votes, a targeted approach to drum up Democratic support at a time when many candidates don't want him around in person.
WaPo Watergate editor Ben Bradlee dies; Clintons stump for Dems; Liberians stranded and more national and international news for Wednesday, October 22, 2014.
Wednesday's Blogs from the Bog!
Law firm unveils newly renovated 200-year-old building.
UL grad named web developer at BBR Creative
Lafayette-based emergency department staffing and management company raises $120 million in senior credit facilities through GE Capital, Healthcare Financial Services.
High-rise apartment building, parking garage, hotel and retail part of new development.
A common thread runs through many of those we oppose: Enshrining in the Constitution protections on programs and their funding sources has had a disastrous effect on Louisiana’s most important economic development engine.
"I am extremely disheartened by the political machines that are attempting to hijack my efforts along with others that advocate for children."
Landrieu, who is fighting to keep her seat for a fourth term, said that Ebola is serious and precautions should be taken, but she accused Republicans of using the virus outbreak in West Africa to "create fear" here at home.
The number of Louisianans with jobs continued to set records in September, but the state's unemployment rate kept rising.
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Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Louisiana is drowning, quickly.
Law enforcement agencies are participating in a "Louisiana Heroin Summit," designed to address the recent rise in heroin use and drug-related deaths around the state.