University of Wisconsin-La Crosse

Hula hoop a great workout, trainers say

Hula hoop a great workout, trainers say

Fitness instructors are putting a spin on a venerable child's toy to help adults get in shape.

The hula hoop traditionally has been used by kids, but it has also become a popular exercise tool for adults who want a low-impact workout that burns calories, tones the abs, strengthens the back and improves balance and flexibility.

And as a bonus, it can make you feel like a kid again. In fact, you can join your kids in inexpensive and impromptu family fitness time in the backyard, the garage, the basement or even upstairs if you don't care about the lamps.

An average hoop aerobics participant burns 210 calories in a half-hour class, according to an American Council on...