• Hooping Funk

    Date: 2016.01.04 | Category: Exploring The Path, HulaHoopla | Response: 0

    At the tail end of 2015, I found myself feeling depressed, unhealthy, unmotivated. Hooping has been in my life since 2009 but it had lost its shine. I’ve been stuck in a rut, mostly self-induced, and my brain has been processing what my next step should be.

    The odd thing is, I KNOW hooping makes me feel good.  Perhaps it boils down to feeling good about myself first and foremost, which I haven’t.  I’ve been testing the waters on what makes me respond with positivity and right now it’s eating mac & cheese and binge watching Mythbusters.  Hmmmmm….

    I did make a conscious choice to be a hoop student again.  I took workshops with Baxter and Gail O’Brien and although I was giddy from them, my hoop habits did not return.  I have not given up hoop! uh, I mean hope!

    Have you ever fallen into a hoop funk?  I’m sure I’m not the only one.  As I make other positive choices I’m sure my faith in the hoop shall return!

    Here’s to hooping and happiness in 2016!

  • Episode 16 – Bex Burton: Tuning in to the Universe

    Date: 2016.01.04 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    Episode 16 – Bex Burton: Tuning in to the Universe



    Lucky, lucky me! I got to sit down with Bex at Hoopcamp this year and have an incredible talk. This amazing woman is so in tune with the Universe. It gives her a sign and she runs with it with so much passion and love and appreciation. She’s a dancer, a hooper, a Pilates instructor, a masseuse, a life and love coach. Movement is her muse.

    We met a couple years ago at Hoopcamp and although I can’t remember the circumstances, I remember that we made eye contact and I felt this incredible warmth. I felt like I knew her. And funny thing, she said the same thing about me. But it took a couple years to actually spend some time getting to know each other and holy crap! I am so glad I did.

    In this interview, Bex shares her fascinating life and honestly, something happened to me. I’m still digesting it. She moved my heart in a way that made me see how I’ve been looking at myself and at my life. I’ve been looking inward, but not in the good way. I’ve been stuck emotionally and physically for about a year and after our conversation, my brain started churning. So many possibilities! My first step was to be a hoop student again so I signed up for a workshop when I got home. Best choice ever! Something has shifted and Bex gave me a push.

    I think the Universe just gave me a sign and thanks to Bex, I’m going to run with it.

    Welcome to Bexico!


    Subscribe to Bex’s YouTube Channel

    Surprise Wedding Proposal – Makes me cry every time!


    If you have any issues listening to the podcast from this site you can also listen here. The plugin that is supposed to work with QuickTime is outdated and I’m looking into a different ways to share the podcast. Thanks for listening!

    Music by the dawn machine

  • Episode 15 – Philo Hagen: Hooping.org, Blogging and Modern Hooping Origins

    Date: 2015.10.12 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    Love this man!

    I snagged Philo at Hoopcamp this year for a chat and I’m still giddy about it. There is a lot of history in this conversation.

    Rainy Day at Hoopcamp

    Rainy Day at Hoopcamp

    Last year at Hoopcamp we had a little early morning bonding because he had been rained out of his tent and I needed coffee. We sat on the front porch of the dining hall in the rain and just talked. I definitely felt a bit like a fan girl around him. And why not?! But he is warm and sweet and funny as hell. My favorite MC hands down!

    He was the very first hooper I met while walking toward my first hooping experience – The Northwest Hoop Gathering in Bend, Oregon in 2009. We walked side by side and I asked him if he’d ever been to something like this before and he said he hadn’t been to that one. I was brand new to the hooping world and didn’t know who he was or what I was about to experience when I walked into that gymnasium full of hoopers. Mind blown. Life changed forever. Philo was there at the beginning of my hoop journey. I’m not the only one.

    MC Philo

    MC Philo

    He told me the story of the origins of Hooping.org – THE hooping portal – which, interestingly enough, has some of its roots in the early days of blogging. Honestly, it was like sitting by the campfire listening to the lore of a world that is still mysterious to me.

    This year I missed out on his workshop. Boo! This man can dance in a hoop and I enjoy watching him so much. Both he and Anah Reichenbach (Hoopalicious) are self-proclaimed “body rockers” and it’s sort of my style too. But at Hoopcamp, there were so many ways to hoop and I enjoyed exploring some of those new ways.



    Some Good Stuff…

    Philo’s Gotta Hoop!


    Philo’s Blog

    Bay Area Hoopers
    L.A. Hoopers Facebook

    Sadly Jason’s hoop making instructions aren’t online.

    See the aura photos!

    Music by the dawn machine


  • Episode 14 – Valentina Martin: Fusion in Life and Love

    Date: 2015.10.11 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    Belly Fusion Workshop

    Belly Fusion Workshop

    Recorded in March 2015 in San Francisco before her performance at the DNA Lounge, Valentina Martin caught me up on her life – a fusion of her talents and passions.

    Hooping with Nicole Wong in Dolores Park

    Hooping with Nicole Wong in Dolores Park

    I happened to be in town spending time with my husband (we eloped in January 2015!). I timed it just right so I could take Valentina’s Belly Fusion workshop that combines belly dancing and hooping. She’s an amazing teacher and I continue to say that I want to be her when I grow up.


    Imitation is supposedly the sincerest form of flattery. I made a run at imitating Valentina when I went to the Rose City School of Burlesque and combined my hooping with a couple of acts. That lasted about 6 months basically because 1) I accomplished my goal and 2) it’s hard to come up with a new act and costume every couple of weeks! My hat – and bra! – off to this lady. She has created spectacular performances and shows with her hoop troupe, The Hoop Unit, her belly dancing and burlesque talents and now in Twisted Orbit, her partnership with her husband, Steve Bags. Fusion.

    Partner Possibilities

    Partner Possibilities Workshop at Hoopcamp 2015


    Lucky for me Valentina and Bags were teaching a Partner Possibilities workshop at Hoopcamp this fall. Now even I can juggle and partner hoop! Looking forward to teaching those new skills to my hoop friends and maybe even my husband.

    Enjoy the interview and please explore the many, many links to her work.

    Happy Hooping!


    Video Goodness
    Unity YouTube Channel
    Twisted Orbit YouTube Channel
    Circling the Infinite – Twisted Orbit

    Twisted Orbit Manipulation Theater June 2015

    Unity Hoops Website
    Unity Hoops Facebook Page
    Twisted Orbit Facebook Page

    Performers Without Borders

    Hoopcamp Retreats
    DNA Lounge

    Music by the dawn machine

  • Episode 13 – Carolyn Mabry: Caroleeena, YouTube, Putting the Dance into Hoopdance

    Date: 2014.12.29 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    Hello and welcome to the blog and podcast!

    Love me some Caroleeena!

    Love me some Caroleeena!

    I love this woman so much! Carolyn Mabry, aka Caroleeena (with 3 E’s!), is a pioneer in the hooping community. She was one of the first hoopers to put tutorials up on YouTube. Can you imagine? Have you searched on hooping tutorials lately?

    She taught and performed at Hoopcamp this year and there was NO WAY I was going to miss her. Her chest hooping video is how I learned to chest hoop and I share that video with all of my students.

    Teaching Fancy Footwork

    Teaching Fancy Footwork

    This lady is also helping hoopers put dance into their hoopdance through a Facebook group called “Putting the Dance in Hoopdance.” The goal is to dance first, hoop second. Every week she encourages members to explore a different aspect of dance and create and share a video. The results are very fun and inspiring. Definitely check it out.

    After listening to this interview, please check out all the links I’ve provided on the blog. There’s tons of good information on Caroleeena, how to subscribe to her YouTube Channel, witness some of her performances and sign up for Interdependence 2015 – An Exploration Of Fire Theater.

    Happy Hooping!

    Must-Have Links & Videos:
    Interdependence 2015 – An Exploration Of Fire Theater (3-day Fire Retreat!)
    Putting the Dance Into Hoopdance Facebook Group
    Subscribe to Caroleeena’s YouTube Channel
    Caroleeena’s Circles of Joy (Blog)
    Hoop Convergence

    This is the video that changed my life.  I share it with all of my beginning hoop students.

    Caroleeena’s Performance: Hoopcamp Presenters Showcase 2014

    Fire Performance with the Fire Conclave at SPARKcon


  • Episode 12 – Karma La’Nay: Performing, Costumes, Circles and Grimm. Oh My!

    Date: 2014.12.29 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    Karma on Grimm

    Karma on Grimm

    The whole reason I started doing this was because I like talking to fellow hoopers. I want to know how they got into hooping, where they’re from, what has been their journey so far.

    Karma on the left.

    Karma on the left.

    Karma is, for me, one of those people you just instantly like. She has a giant smile that will melt your heart. We met and hit it off on the set of NBC’s Grimm which is shot in Portland. We were both extras for Season 3, Episode 16 “The Show Must Go On” in which we were Steampunk Carnies. She had a featured part as an LED hooper at night at the carnival. It was so fun! Very cold on those days too so we huddled under coats together between takes.


    I met a lot of awesome and talented people in that short time on set including performers from Cloud City Circus. A few of us extras met up a while later to see a show and had ourselves a little Grimm reunion.

    Me in pink hair!

    Me in pink hair!

    Hoops in the background.

    Hoops in the background.

    Karma shares her passion for circles – I can relate! – having recently become obsessed with the aerial lyra. As a member of the Cloud City Circus, she performs regularly at the Analog Cafe here in Portland.




    So in this interview I mention A.T. of Wicked Hoops running the Thursday summer hoop jam at Colonel Summers Park. She moved to Colorado earlier in 2014. The hoop jam still goes on in the summer but other hoopers share the roll of running it. We miss you AT!!!

    Now let’s get to know Karma!


    Cloud City Circus Performances


    Cloud City Circus Facebook Page

    Analog Cafe

    Currently, Karma also Go-Go Hoopdances at the “I Don’t Know Bar & Grill” in Boring, Oregon.

  • Episode 11 – Caterina Suttin: Inspiration & Creativity

    Date: 2014.12.26 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    With Caterina at her Breathing Breaks worksop in Portland, Oregon, 2013

    With Caterina at her Breathing Breaks worksop in Portland, Oregon, 2013

    This interview took place a little over a year ago around Christmas of 2013 when Caterina was in Portland teaching her workshop, “Breathing Breaks.” She was on the verge of setting up her Etsy shop and website for her stunning jewelry and was rehearsing for performance at The Flow Show in New York.

    We were blessed with a sneak peek of that performance in the workshop and then earlier this year I saw the whole performance in person at Hoopcamp. Beautiful! And at the renegade show, she was a pretty convincing trucker-hat-wearing dude. :)


    Incandescent Coils HoopSeed Pendant





    I also saved up a little extra cash to treat myself to one of her Incandescent Coils pendants.

    This incredible lady has such an amazing life story about finding inspiration, creating, performing, traveling, the hoop community and her dream of living in South America.

    Get inspired to create something, anything! And happy hooping!



    Caterina’s performance at The Flow Show NYC 2013

    The Red Dress at Hoopcamp Presenters Showcase 2014





  • More Podcasts On The Way!

    Date: 2014.04.30 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    It’s sunny and I want to hoop!  But alas, I am doing homework.  What kind of homework?  Well, I’m going for an amazing job with Maker Media and have been learning about the importance of social media presence in order to pop out among the possible candidates.  Since I’m proud that I started a podcast from scratch and publish it on iTunes, I feel it’s worth a little bragging on this public platform.  Yay, me!

    I have two interviews ready to assemble.  One is with the the lovely and captivating Caterina Suttin and the other is with my Grimm co-extra, Karma!  Just did another amazing interview with Alex Truex of Dutruex Hula Hoops. But alas! The recorder crapped out – no file found. Drat!  We’re rescheduling.

    Next steps – polishing this website, getting sponsors and advertisers and better recording gear.

  • Episode 10 – Antonio Gomez and 10 Years of the Bay Area Hoopers

    Date: 2013.12.31 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    Hello hoopers, hoopers in the making and hooper lovers!HulaHooplaPodcast_Large

    I met my goal!!! I got my tenth episode done before the new year!! My next goal is to make this podcast professional. What does that mean? It means a simple and redesigned website, sponsors, advertisers, maybe even some fun prizes. I want to bring hoopers from around the world to your ears and hearts. If you’re interested in helping me make this a reality and bring it to the masses in a more polished formed, you can reach me at hoopanista (at) hulahoopla (dot) com. Thanks!

    On this episode – EPISODE 10!! – I talk with Antonio Gomez of the San Francisco Bay Area Hoopers, or BAH. And I saved this one, my 10th episode to honor BAH’s 10th Anniversary! So cool. I haven’t even known about hooping, as I’ve come to know it, for 10 years!!

    Antonio Gomez

    Antonio Gomez


    I met Antonio when I came to my first BAH hoop jam in December of 2012 and felt an immediate connection. I had just started coming down to the Bay Area to visit my long-distance fella and wanted to meet hoopers in area. Headed over from East Bay to Inner Space in San Francisco and I have to admit I was pretty nervous, sort like I was on someone else’s turf. Aren’t we our own worst enemy?! I was welcomed with open arms and had a blast. My guy came along and hooped with me!


    If you’re ever in the Bay Area, check out BAH’s weekly indoor hoop jam. Right now going into 2014 it’s every Sunday, 1:00pm – 3:00pm at Inner Mission, 2050 Bryant Street in San Francisco. All experience levels welcome and kick in some cash to support the group.

    I’m putting this episode out while I’m down in the Bay Area for Christmas and the New Year and will indeed be heading to a BAH hoop jam. Can’t wait!

    Weekly Indoor Hoop Jam
    Every Sunday 1pm-3pm
    Inner Mission
    2050 Bryant Street, San Francisco

    Bay Area Hoopers

    Article on Bay Area Hoopers from Hooping.org

    Facebook Group

    Bay Area Hoopers Documentary by Victor “Supervictorio” Ibarra


  • Episode 9 – Beth Lavinder!

    Date: 2013.12.23 | Category: PODCAST! | Response: 0

    Hello hoopers, hoopers in the making and hooper lovers!

    OK. I have got to stop bitching about my voice recorder. It’s actually pretty cool. It’s operator error – it’s all me. So a big thank you goes out to my friend Joel again for loaning it to me!

    The new podcast artwork!

    This is Episode 9. I had a fortuitous meeting with Beth Lavinder, of all places, at the last indoor hoop jam of the season for the Bay Area Hoopers in San Francisco! I was visiting the Bay Area and she was on her way to teach at Jaguar Mary’s Sacred Circularities in Bali.

    She told me she’s not really comfortable about talking about herself. I feel pretty lucky. She opened up and shared so much about herself and her hoop journey starting out in Carrboro, North Carolina seeing Vivian (Spiral) for the first time, hooping with Julia Hartsell and Baxter and her experience with The Hoop Path.


    Beth Lavinder

    Beth Lavinder

    Beth is part of my hoop journey.  The first time I saw her was at the Northwest Hoop Gathering in Bend, Oregon, April 2009.  I walked into the big gym where the event was taking place and saw sooooooo many hoopers doing incredible things!!  And Beth was one of them.  She was rolling her hoop up her body with her hair flying.  So beautiful.  I saw her again at Hoop Convergence in North Carolina in 2010 and then we were actually able to sit down and talk at Hoopcamp in Santa Cruz in 2010.  This is an incredible lady and an inspirational hooper.


    We really do have an amazing community.  I hope to introduce you to so many of its members.

    Next episode is the 10th!  And it is in honor of the Bay Area Hoopers’ 10th Anniversary.

    Happy Hooping!

    Beth Lavinder Interview with Hooping.org

    Sacred Circularities

    The Hoop Path

    Julia Hartsell

    Vivian (Spiral)


    Hoop Convergence


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