Workshops

Standing Rock Cultural Arts presents

“Make it Go Round” Hula Hoop Workshop
-Learn how to make a hula hoop
-Start from scratch
-Create Your Own To Take Home

Saturday August 14, 3:30-5:30pm
-The Yard next to The North Water Street Gallery.
-257 N. Water St.
-after the Hula Hoop demo at The Old Fashioned Ice Cream Social at The
Home Savings Plaza from 2:30-3pm.
-a possible second workshop will be held Wednesday, August 18, if
there’s enough interest. (Time TBA).

FEE: $25 per participant
-covers materials
-includes your own finished hula hoop ready to take home!

INSTRUCTOR: Emily Parker.
-call Emily for more Info. 330-673-5955

SIGN-UP CONTACT: 330-673-4970. Pre Registration required.

THE HISTORY OF THE HULA HOOP

Thousands of years have passed since the first hula-hoop came into
being. Unlike the modern version, which is made of plastic, the first
hula-hoops were essentially made from the more earthy materials like
wood, grass and vines. Bamboo and metal hula-hoops were also in vogue.
The dried grapevines were twisted into circular hoops, which were swung
around the waist, but some pulled the hoops along the ground with the
help of a stick. In England both adults and kids were crazy about
hooping and the result of enthusiastic hooping was in some cases a
dislocated back or a heart attack.

The origin of the hula-hoop’s nomenclature is interesting. When some
British sailors chose to visit the Hawaiian Islands in the nineteenth
century, they discovered that the popular hula dancing of the island and
the way the hoop was swung around the body was almost similar. The word
“hula” in the Hawaiian language refers to dance. Thus the hoop came to
be known as hula-hoop.

Wooden Hula Hoops were introduced in Australian stores in 1957 after
they proved to be a popular exercise tool in schools. Richard P. Knerr
and Arthur K. Melvin of Wham-O, a fledgling California toy manufacturer,
soon took notice of the Hula Hoop craze and began selling plastic hoops
in the United States. Within four months, twenty-five million Hula Hoops
had been sold! For the true origin of the Hula Hoop, however, we must
delve much deeper in history. Thousands of years ago, children in
ancient Egypt were known to play a similar game with large hoops of
dried grapevines which they propelled along the ground with a stick or
swung around the waist.

An Australian company took advantage of the craze and began making
hula-hoops out of wood. Not to be outdone a Californian manufacturer
–Richard P. Knerr and Arthur K. Melvin manufactured a lighter version of
the hoop using materials like plastic. They also made it in various
colors. They managed to sell almost 20 million hoops. Wham-o as their
company was called priced the hula-hoop at about $2 and made a fortune
within six months. This was in the year 1958. Like any other fad, the
craze died down in the sixties, but because fitness has now become a
watchword, it is still used in many parts of the world.

The hula-hoop became so popular that many competitions were held. Basic
criteria were set for the marathon records and the number of people who
participated was amazing. The hula-hoop had to be continuously revolved
in the area between the shoulders and the hips. This called for intense
concentration and control of body and mind. The competitor had to ensure
that the hoop did not go above the shoulders or below the hip and once
the hoop had commenced spinning, the hand could not touch it. No breaks
were allowed. Since hula hooping was known to trigger off heart attacks
or dislocated backs, the competition was always held in the presence of
the medical fraternity.

The craze for hula hooping may not be as intense as it was in the 18th
and nineteenth century, but one cannot deny the fascination that this
simple sport has. It keeps the ugly bulges at bay and is also a simple
form of positive entertainment.