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“5 Favorite Hula Hoop Activities”
1) Boomerang Hoop
- Roll the hoop out with backspin so that it comes back.
- Easier: Younger students can start by rolling the hoop straight, before teaching them about backspin.
- Harder: Challenge proficient students to attempt to boomerang the hoop without moving their feet after releasing it!
2) Musical Hoops
- Set-up- Scatter many hoops on the floor throughout the playing area. Have music at the ready.
- Rules- When music plays, students move around the gym without stepping in any hoops. When the music stops, students stop moving and walk to a hoop. They are allowed stand in any hoop, even if it is occupied (i.e. they can share!). The next round, switch the movement (i.e. skip, gallop, etc.) and then start the music. While the music is playing, remove a few of the hoops. This will force more students to share when you next stop the music. Continue removing hoops each round until there are just enough hoops for all students to fit in.
3) Hoop Tag
- Set-up- Every student stands inside of a hoop that is lying on the floor. Pick one color to be “IT” (switch every minute or so).
- Rules- Students move by shuffling their feet in the hoop.One color is ‘IT’ and attempts to tag other hoops by bumping different colored hoops with theirs. When tagged, pick up your hoop and hold it over your head. To be freed, another student touches a hoop that is being held up. Once freed, drop the hoop to the ground and return to play. Note- If a student steps out of a hoop, this is the same as being tagged.
4) Hoop Pass
- Students form a circle and hold hands. Without unlinking hands, students must pass their body through the hoop. The object of the game is to pass the hop around the entire circle.
- Closure Discussion- Ask students what allowed them to be the most successful (communication, teamwork, etc.)?
5) Non-Manipulative Hula Hoop Fun
- Balance- Balance the hoop on different body parts. Easier: use inside edge of hoop. Harder: use outside edge.
- Turning- Spin hoop like coin.
- Transfer weight- Lay hoop on the floor. Have students place their hands inside the hoop and then switch the placement of their feet.
- Jumping/Landing- Lay hoop on the floor and ask students to jump in and out.
- Stretching- Hold the hoop over head (parallel to the floor). Count down from ten. When you get to one, drop the hoop and shout “Blast Off!” The object is for the hoop to fall without touching any part of the body.
- Twisting- Jump rope using the hoop.
- Rolling- Roll the hoop on floor. How long before it falls or crashes?
- Curling- Lay hoop on floor and walk around it (“circumference”) balancing on the edge.
Hey Nick…. Love these!!! Do you have any ideas for younger age….3-4 years old
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I categorized them this post as K – 2nd activities, but most are appropriate for pre-school aged children. Activities numbered 2, 3, & 5 are suitable with very minimal modifications. For activity #1 (“Boomerang”) I suggest having them perform the easy option. You can demonstrate the actual boomerang at the end of class. I like adding a bit of fun to it by allowing them to think that the hoop is magical and will only come back if they shout the correct color of the hoop. For the first few rolls I do not put backspin on it and tell them to shout the wrong color. Then I will tell them that if they want to see magic to say the correct color of the hoop. This time I will put backspin on it and when it returns they get super excited!!! Finally, activity #4 (“Hoop Pass”) can be adapted by having them form a line instead of a circle. The activity leader holds the hoop (about 6 inches from the ground) and then the line of students attempts to walk through the hoop without touching it or unlinking hands. I hope this helps!