Hooping In The Good ‘Ol Days

27 May

Featured Guest Blogger: Catina Jane Gray

This is me. Seven years ago at 440 lbs.
I tell you this to make sure you know
that no matter your size…
YOU can hoop too!

My love of hooping started in 2003, and at that time hooping was pretty much only known among the String Cheese Incident fans…but that wouldn’t be the case for long! I fell in love with hooping via a blogger I’d been reading for years named Ariel. She was new to hooping & totally addicted. She spread that addiction to many of her readers, including me. I was so interested! But because of my size at the time, I didn’t think I could do it. It seemed so daunting to me…plus, where would I be able to find a hoop right for my size?!

Enter Anah (AKA Hoopalicious)…the “queen” of the hoop! She was making & selling hoops, so i contacted her and purchased my first hoop (as seen above). She even custom sized it for me and was great to work with in my effort to get a hoop that would work for me.

Then, when seeing how getting a big ol’ hoop into a car could be a task, I learned of collapsible hoops! WHAT?! I had to have one! I found Jason, who made these awesome hoops! And this hoop is the one I still use when I hoop today. Then, out of my desire to share this newfound passion with others, I started making my own hoops & giving them away. People loved them!!


Another exciting thing soon developed in the online hooping world. Hooping.org was born! The creators of the site recount it’s start…

Hooping.org was founded on May 4, 2003 shortly after three bloggers – Philo Hagen, Ariel Meadow Stallings and Vera Fleischer – spent hours hooping together at a party at Min Jung Kim’s house in Oakland, California. Frustrated by a lack of information about hooping online, Philo decided to start a blog about the topic and invited his friends to join him. Their goal – to spread the joy of hooping to all and build a world wide hooping community. “

Hooping.org was like “hooper heaven” because at that time, there just wasn’t a lot of info or videos around about hooping. Unlike today where you can find hooping videos and websites about hooping all over the web!! And even MOVIES! about hooping (which looks amazing!)

Now, with all this said, I never got great at hooping , I just really enjoyed it. My love of the hoop lasted a couple years…we had an on again/off again relationship and then it kind of fizzled out. For a long while now, I haven’t hooped much at all. Until recently…when Sara got me re-addicted to hooping!

This is perfect timing, because I have been on a weight loss journey for many years. I am currently almost 100 lbs. down and many to go, but I’m always looking for new ways to get my workouts in. So hooping has again showed up on my radar and I’ve been enjoying hooping this past week. It is a great cardio workout!! Some friends & I are even getting together to make hoops & hoop in the park! So just remember that no matter your size or skill level, if you want to give hooping a try, just DO IT! Go outside & play!

Catina Jane Gray is a self-taught mixed media artist, jewelry designer. & photographer living in sunny Florida. Be sure to check out her whimsical art and jewelry at her site, Catina Jane Arts and at her Etsy store too.

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14 Responses to “Hooping In The Good ‘Ol Days”

  1. sabbath May 27, 2010 at 3:44 am #

    Wonderful! I am not a very thin person by any means (over the 200lb mark, and that’s all you need to know ;)), so reading this blog posting was very empowering. Thank you for sharing, and by the way, got to check out your art – BEAUTIFUL! Looks like I need to buy this one – it’s just too perfect for me! http://www.etsy.com/listing/46786514/you-are-getting-somewhere-print

    • livelightly May 27, 2010 at 3:50 am #

      Sabbath…I’m so glad you liked it! And yes, I loooove me some Catina art. 🙂 I want to fill the entire RV with it.

    • catina jane June 6, 2010 at 7:46 pm #

      thanks sabbath! i love your name!

  2. hoopingrunner May 27, 2010 at 3:52 am #

    This is FANTASTIC! I was just telling my very first class of students this afternoon how hooping can reach a wonderfully rich assortment of people. I’m still smiling about the 17 of us hooping together this afternoon. Congrats to Catina for getting her hoop back out to play as she works toward her goals! Happy hoopin’!

  3. wellofcreations May 27, 2010 at 5:11 am #

    Catina jane- another connecting point for us! I am in Flying Lessons e-course with you and I just purchased my first hoop off etsy this past week! Thank you Sara for this beautiful place to connect.

    • catina jane June 6, 2010 at 7:45 pm #

      oh that is awesome! i am loving the e-course!

  4. Vanessa May 27, 2010 at 1:03 pm #

    Yay, Catina!!! I adore you. You have no idea.

  5. kristen May 27, 2010 at 1:15 pm #

    Catina–yeah for you! My kids and husband sort of looked at me side ways when I announced I was going to start hooping. And when I showed up at our local hoop jam and I was by far the oldest and not the tiniest I decided–who cares! This is MY life and I am not going to be a spectator or have regrets! I recently met an older woman who hooped beautifully–I love to watch her. So no matter your size or your age you can hoop too!!!

  6. Whit May 28, 2010 at 12:47 am #

    Catina Jane…. I love this. As one of the fluffier women I know (size 20), I love that I’m not along in my crazy hippie hoopiness. Everyone else I know thinks I’m a nut. I love your artwork.

    • catina jane June 6, 2010 at 7:43 pm #

      thanks so my Whit! and you are not alone! at all 🙂

  7. Shalet May 31, 2010 at 1:10 am #

    That’s awesome! Makes me want to start hooping!

  8. Christa Giles June 2, 2010 at 6:27 pm #

    That photo of you (I assume) hand hooping was one of my early favs! I too got into hooping through Ariel, and eventually took over the Hula Hooping Tribe when she stepped down from the moderator position (I’m Xta over there).. and always love seeing people of all shapes and sizes getting into hooping 🙂

    • catina jane June 6, 2010 at 7:42 pm #

      oh awesome! thanks for the photo comments! my hubby took it 🙂

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