ICYMI, hula hoops are having a moment. Not just any kind of hula hoop, though—but weighted hula hoops. These fun little throwback playthings make for a pretty terrific workout; you’d be surprised how much harder it is to swing around a few extra pounds of hoop.
Whether you need a break from your run routine or just want to inject your cardio workouts with a little more joy, a weighted hula hoop with deliver. “I love the child-like spirit that hula hoops bring,” says trainer Kehinde Anjorin, NCSF, CFSC, founder of The Power Method. “This is why hula hoops are so fun: They bring us back to our very core of wonder, curiosity, and play. Movement doesn’t always have to be specific to weights or running, we can simply tap into our childlike spirit and get our engines revving at the same time.”
All that fun also does your body some serious good. “Hula hooping involves total-body coordination, muscular endurance, and core stability,” Anjorin adds. “It doesn’t take much to get that heart rate up.” Hooping also requires your full focus, so you’ll get a brain workout, too.
Most of the weighted hula hoops out there come in at somewhere between one and five pounds, so you can always opt for a lighter one and level up your weight as you level up your skills. Get started with the following top-rated hula hoops, and you’ll be sweating and smiling in no time.
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Fitness Exercise Weighted Hoop
Made of eight detachable sections that make it easy to transport just about anywhere—hi, outdoor park workouts!—this hula hoop is coated in soft foam and comfy to swing all day. Weighing nearly two pounds, it’s great for beginners and pros alike.
Rave review: “I’ve been loving my hoop so much! At first I started with 10 minutes and your waist does get sore. But eventually your body gets use to it! Super fun way to exercise.”
Weighted Colorful Hoop
This multi-colored hula hoop not only looks fun, but it pretty much guarantees a great sweat sesh. It’s a little heavier, weighing about 3.3 pounds, so you’ll feel the burn fast.
Rave review: “I’ve had this hoop for about four years now and it’s still in good condition. I find it’s an easy exercise to do when I first get out of bed. It helps wake me up! I like to switch back and forth between this and a jump rope. Just 15 minutes makes me feel great throughout the day.”
—Berenice O., amazon.com
Beginner Hula Hoops
This hoop weighs about 1.5 pounds and comes in a few different fun colors. If you’re a more seasoned hooper and want a perfect fit, you’ll also be happy to know that this one also comes in a couple of different diameter sizes, so you can be sure you’re getting the correctly sized hoop for you.
Rave review: “This hoop feels substantial, weighty but not cumbersome, and overall is very well made with great attention to detail. I chose the ‘Black’ option which has alternating matte black and reflective rainbow sparkle tape; very aesthetically pleasing.”
Travel Fitness Hoop
Take this portable weighted hula hoop with you to the backyard, gym, or just about anywhere you want to get in a workout. Not only is this one super pretty (it’s reflective!), but it also comes with straps you can use to carry it around after you break it into its segments.
Rave review: “I’m usually not one to gush about a product or item, but I LOVE this hoop! It’s the perfect weight to make keeping it spinning along your waist easy, but stills provide a workout. The detachable parts do make creaking sounds when using the hoop, but as long as you’re watching TV or listening to music (which I always am) it’s not too noticeable. As far as effectiveness, I definitely saw a difference in a few weeks.”
Adjustable Hula Hoop
Not quite sure what size you need? This weighted hula hoop has an adjustable width; all you have to do to change its diameter is pop out one of its eight different segments. Each segment is covered in soft foam, so you can dance and play in comfort, no matter what size you choose.
Rave review: “Fantastic. I started using this straight away. It took a few goes to get the rhythm right but it’s working wonders.”
Weighted Hula Hoop
Alright so, this weighted hula hoop is a little different from others. Instead of being just a simple round hoop, this one features a weight that swings around your hoop as you spin it. If you grew up with toys like the Skip It or Bop It, you’ll be obsessed. Plus, that swinging weight keeps your momentum going, which is helpful if your hoop skills are a little lacking (*raises hand*).
Rave review: “This is the best waist exerciser I have ever seen! It’s very easy to use and won’t fall off during exercise.”
Rave review: “You can feel the difference between a regular hoop and this two-pound hoop. Five minutes straight is a challenge for someone like me with little experience, but it’s fun to try.”
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