Thursday, February 17, 2011

Exercising Beyond the Hoop

Yes, I do (sometimes) exercise using methods other than the hoop, though I tend to fall off the wagon with everything except hooping. These two videos are turning out to be an exception and have kept me coming back for some time now.
Pilates is a great addition to any hooping practice because it focuses on core strength and creating a fluid, lean line. Both of these videos are on Netflix watch instantly and have made me stronger, held my interest, challenged me, and made me more confident in my hooping!

Pilates: 10 Minute Solution with Lara Hudson (2004)

10 Minute Solutions: Rapid Results Pilates with Lara Hudson (2006)

10 minute workouts were all the rage when these came out, and I have to say, I still love them. No overly long, tedious warm-ups and cool downs! If I am going to workout, it better be worth it - and these videos make you feel the burn right away.
Though I’d done work with Pilates some years ago it had been awhile since I had any directed practice. Someone with a moderate fitness level and moderate to high flexibility would find these do-able, yet engaging. The rapid results video is more challenging, and if proper form is not followed could create more strain than tone - so I do recommend starting with the first is this is your first foray into Pilates.
Lara Hudson is a pleasant host who (thankfully) does not become redundant nor annoying upon repeated viewings, and makes everything easy to understand. Five, 10-Minutes workouts focusing on each section of the body compose each video. Usually, I do three of the sections and feel my whole body surging with energy by the end. With normal gym workouts I tend to get very stiff, lose flexibility, and bulk up quite easily making for some some hulky hoop sessions... (not fun)
Pilates is the perfect remedy for those who want to tone, challenge, and create a lean line. After just two weeks I definitely feel stronger and I am still not tired of these two! Check them out - you can even take my favorite approach to a new workout: let the video play out while you are busy with something else. While it's playing, listen and check in to see how you like the routines. If you think it's for you, you can get up and try a few things. If not, no harm done and no money spent! (Thanks Netflix!)

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