Hula hooping is not just a form of entertainment. It’s a flow of expression and a way of finding freedom, says hooper Sanne Kelly

Who hasn’t, at some point or the other, picked up a hula hoop and given up after a few futile attempts? And so to watch someone master the hula hoop, (especially when it is a light-up hoop) is always a pleasure. Many must have felt that way watching hula hoop dancer Sanne Kelly’s recent performance at the Orion Mall.

“Hooping is a dance and a form of entertainment. It’s simply something you enjoy watching. It’s quite a new or even modern art form where there are no rules,” explains Sanne. “One can incorporate anything into it. I do belly dancing and yoga so I fuse them into my dance. Hooping is a form of self-expression.”

Hooping is more of a hobby and a passion for Sanne, though she has occasionally performed in her home country Holland and in a few places in India.

“I began hooping in Holland when I went to meet some friends. They had some hoops around and it seemed like a fun thing to do. So I picked it up and then I fell in love with it. I just couldn’t stop hooping after that and I know that I will always keep doing it”

What’s interesting is that Sanne is self-taught, and has largely relied on online videos and online classes.

“Sometimes you meet someone who can hoop and you can simply go hang out with them and learn. There are always other hoopers around, so we help each other. It’s about sharing and people coming together and doing something, which makes everyone happy.”

Though the hula hoops made of plastic tubes are known to have been invented in the 1950s, it is believed that the hoop has been in existence for hundreds of years, some even attribute mythological tales to the dance form.

For Sanne, the hoop is also a way to experience spiritual “bliss”.

“The circle is symbolic for the rotating universe. Even in Tao, it said that everything in life is circular — what goes around comes around. And when you’re inside the hoop, it makes you feel like you are inside infinity. You start feeling relaxed,” she observes.

Those who master the hoop are also known to reach a state where the moves simply start flowing. That’s why, says Sanne, the hoop is also called a flow toy.

“The idea of flowing comes from the fact that you simply start hooping and the rest just happens. The moves cannot be planned, they cannot be choreographed. The essence of hooping lies in the fact that you can simply flow with it. Then you feel more freedom, especially from the mind.”

Keywords: Hula hooping