I bet you think hula hooping is simply kid’s play. Well, it’s not just for kids anymore. As a matter of fact, hula hooping is a total body workout, and is especially effective if you want killer abs. In most instances, strong, killer abs translate to better elimination. Better elimination results in a happy colon.

Hooping, at least eight minutes per day, can strengthen your abdominal muscles and decrease your waist size. Recent studies credit hooping with melting away visceral fat which is the hardest fat to eliminate as we age. The American Diabetes Association describes visceral fat as “body fat that is stored within the abdominal cavity and is therefore stored around a number of important internal organs such as the liver, pancreas, and intestines.” Also, visceral fat is the most detrimental to your heart health.

An intense hooping workout is good for your heart. You will notice as soon as you begin to hoop your heart rate increases. Work your way up to 20 minutes of hooping and you’ve done your moderate-vigorous intensity physical activity necessary for improving and maintaining optimal heart health.

According to the American Council on Exercise, hooping burns over 400 calories per hour. Engage your arms and legs and you can burn as many as 600 calories per hour.

Hooping improves your spine’s flexibility and strength. 3FatChicks is an online source on the subject of hooping. 3FatChicks states, “While performing hula hooping, you make very rhythmic rocking movements forward and backward, shifting your weight along the way. This kind of movement releases the tension of the muscles surrounding the sacrum (the lower part of the back) and realigns the sacrum with the rest of the spine. As a result, blood flow to the spine improves and total flexibility of the spine is increased.”

Hooping improves hand-eye coordination by engaging your brain as well as your muscles.

Hoopers are people who are hooked on hula hooping. Most hoopers enjoy the physical fitness benefits of hooping. Just as important, they enjoy how hooping makes them feel: Happy! Want to slim down your waist, tone your colon muscles, and thrill your inner child? Give hooping a try!

Sharon V.B. Roulhac is an integrative nutrition health coach and an internationally certified colon hydrotherapist at the advanced level. She is affiliated with Relaxing Alternatives Wellness Center in Gaithersburg, Maryland.

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