100+ Hula Hoop Ideas for Kids of All Ages
I was lucky to be asked to present at the Region 3 USA Gymnastics Conference. My workshop was called 100+ Things To Do with Hula Hoops. Hula hoops inspire movement and fun for all ages. I particularly like to work with mini hoops so preschool and toddlers can enjoy developing fine motor skills and hand eye coordination. Hula hoops are great for the imagination. Here are some of my favorite hula hoop ideas for kids of all ages!
Hula hoops are easy to find, buy, and access for playtime. You can also be creative and make one from pool noodles or irrigation piping. There are tons of videos on how to make hoops but don’t use boiling water to expand the pipe -just use a hair dryer or heat gun.
Some precautions to think about are:
- Find lots of space. Think about front, back, sides and above.
- Find a flat level surface. You will probably be running after it so stay safe.
- Don’t land on it! That could damage you or the hoop.
Let me show you 3 of my favourite things to do with Hula hoops.
1. Human Ring Toss.
This is great activity for all ages and the whole family. Usually I would caution about tossing or throwing a hula hoop like a frisbee as they can travel very far and very fast. However this is so fun. One person will toss the hoop gently to the other person who is the Target. The Target can use the whole body or just an arm or leg. The Tosser can use 2 hands or, as they get better or if they are older, one hand.
2. Rolling- sounds simple but you can
- roll it forwards
- try to catch it
- roll it to a partner
- time how fast it goes
- walk the dog (make it roll backwards)
- jump over or through it while it’s rolling
- roll it, catch it and do another trick
- roll it to a partner who is also rolling one to you
You can spin the hoop on your body (neck, arm, waist, hip ankle) but spinning with a friend is even more fun. I do this with my parent and tot class so everyone can do it. Put the hoop on the wrist on one person and hold hands with your partner. Now keep straight strong arms and shake hands with your partner. You might have to start the spin with a little push rom your free hand but the up and down movement of shaking hands will get it going. Can you speed it up or switch who has the hoop on their wrist or move around with your partner?
Hula hoops make the perfect prop in gymnastics classes for kids. Whether playing a welcome game at camp, or using them as a target to put your hands in for a cartwheel, hoops are extremely useful in the gym!
There are also so many games that use hula hoops as props like Hopscotch, Sharks in the Water, Pip, Squeak and Wilber, 4 Corners and even Quidditch. Fitness and cardio activities can be more entertaining than tedious with one or two or more. I hope everyone has a hula hoop of some shape or size and uses it to have tons of fun this summer.