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story.lead_photo.caption Keith Bryant/The Weekly Vista Ashley Cooper manuevers her hula hoop.

Colorful circles twirled through the air on a hot Sunday afternoon while the people swinging them laughed, chatted and shared their techniques.

A group of hula hoopers is meeting alongside Lake Bella Vista, off the west shore near the Bella Vista sign each Sunday at 2 p.m.

Madison Holliday, who has been with the group since it started indoors last December, said this started more like a class with an instructor, but over the past few months it's evolved into a group of enthusiasts practicing with their hoops together, learning from each other and generally having a good time.

Holliday said attendance varies from a handful, like last Sunday, to 15 or 20 people at its peak.

The group also organizes via a Facebook group, Bella Vista Hula Hoopers.

"Anybody's welcome to come," she said.

Holliday said she's been hooping for about five years, but it's not usually a group activity.

"It's fun and it's exercise without really realizing it," she said.

Another group member, Ashley Cooper said she's been at it for six years and she taught Holliday initially.

She got started after seeing someone hula hooping during a music festival, she explained, and tried it herself soon after.

"I was actually somewhat good at it," she said.

Since then she's performed on stage in front of a large audience in Los Angeles and taught other people.

She's also lost weight from it, she said, and generally enjoys dancing with her hoop.

"I love getting in the flow state," she said. "It's just something that's really fun to do."

Anyone who wants to get started should go get a hoop, she said. Bigger is better for a beginner focusing on the classic hip movements, she said, and smaller hoops are great for doing more advanced tricks.

Susan Zeh said she hula hooped as a kid and has picked it up a few times as an adult, but she didn't stick with it until she joined this group when it formed last December.

She's only missed once, she said, and started bringing her daughter as well.

"It comes back to you," she said. "It's a fun way to exercise."

General News on 06/05/2019

Print Headline: Swinging hoops

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