We chat to Rohini about how her career break led to becoming a hula hoop teacher in the UK and how she raises money for great causes via her hoop classes
Welcome to our LiveLoveHoop Hoop Teacher Feature series – where we profile outstanding graduates of our UK Hoop Teacher Training program and find out what makes them tick.
Rohini started hooping with her daughter’s hula hoop in 2011 and discovered a new challenge that was also a lot of fun! Since then she’s raised thousands of money for charities supporting children in India and the UK and has recently launched her first book – “Leading Ladies – Inspiring stories of women who found their purpose with passion”.
When did you start hula hooping and how?
I remember picking up my daughter’s light plastic hula-hoop in the autumn of 2011. She was only eleven and could hoop with such ease, whereas I found it almost impossible to keep it going. It coincided with a time when I was looking for a new challenge with a view to doing a fund raising for a cause back in India.
That autumn morning, with that flimsy ring of plastic and my clumsy attempt at keeping it spinning round my waist, proved a real turning point for me. Thanks to hula-hooping, I went on to raise many thousands of pounds for good causes, mainly supporting children in India and in the UK.
When did you realise you wanted to teach hoop?
In the course of the various fund raising events I embarked upon, most of which involved at least some hula-hooping, I taught friends and colleagues, and my children and their friends to hoop, and even created dance routines with the hula-hoop. The “teaching” was informal and with an event in mind, but the feedback I got was always positive. It made think that perhaps some day I could teach others on a more formal basis too.
How did you find out about LiveLoveHoop Teacher Training and what made you sign up?
I had just quit my job and was on a career break. I decided it was a perfect time to find out if I had it in me to teach hooping on a more formal basis. So I think I may have searched the internet for hoop teacher training and came across Jo’s course. It was in Brighton which also suited me well.
How was your experience in the hoop teacher training? Would you recommend it?
At first I was a bit unsure of whether I was good enough to teach others, especially as I found I was relatively new to many of the off-body techniques that I had simply not focused enough on in my previous hooping. I warmed to Jo instantly – she had this way of putting us at ease. I also really liked the other ladies who were on the course with me, many of whom I stayed in contact with after the course. I would definitely recommend the course. It allows you to explore why you are looking to teach and gives you the guidance and the practical tools to go out there and find your own way of teaching. I particularly like that Jo does not try and impose her style or technique on her students, allowing them instead to put their own stamp on the hoop teaching business they may go on to set up.
What have you achieved since graduating? Tell us about your business!
Since hooping had always been associated with fund raising for charity I wanted to continue in that theme and decided that all the money I make from teaching hooping net of costs I would donate to various good causes of my own choosing, or in some cases those chosen by my students. I created my own brand, Rainbow Hula-DanceFit, which admittedly I don’t use much as a business. I started my first workshop about six weeks after the course and targeted mums in my area. I also learnt to make hula-hoops along with my husband who does the heavy lifting of making the hoop itself whilst I decorate them. I also ran a few family workshops over the summer holidays in 2015 that were fun and got both mums/dads and kids hooping together. I did a workshop over two days for my son’s primary school which was a huge success and the school invested in some proper adult size hoops for the children to use in playtimes.
Since early this year I have started teaching hoop fitness via Bromley MyTime Active. I enjoy the fact that the venue and the bookings are all taken care of by them, I simply have to turn up and do a class that my students will enjoy and want to return to. The focus is on fitness and getting a low impact all body workout through hooping, rather then mastery of various tricks. I give them the foundations and the techniques to learn tricks and new moves should they so wish.
What are your proudest teaching moments?
I have many; every time someone who comes to my class and says they can’t hoop, never have been able to, and go on to do so by the end of the class is a source of joy and pride for me. But my favourite moments have been watching children learn to hoop, and go on to perform a hoop dance routine on stage to raise money for a group of children who are far less fortunate than them.
What do you love about teaching hula hooping? What motivates you?
Hooping changed my life in so many ways, and by teaching others to hoop I hope to create a new positive circle of change in theirs too. I love it when people return week after week and it gives me great pleasure to watch them progress, get better with the hoop and find their own creative space within it. Teaching others makes me push myself to learn new things and get better. I am constantly motivated to find new ways to use the hoop to improve fitness and tap into new pools of creativity. I am blessed to have so many wonderful hoopers on the internet who inspire and motivate me to do more, and do it better.
What are your goals/plans for your hoop teaching in the future?
Hoop teaching will always be a labour of love, not a source of income for me. For this reason I have to impose a limit to how many hours each week I can spend on it. For now I intend to continue teaching via Bromley MyTime’s various centres and where possible find other like-minded people to work with.
I think there is great potential to introduce hooping in schools, but also for adults with learning difficulties as a gentle but hugely effective way to get fit in your own space and time. I am also looking to create an upper body hoop workout for people with mobility issues. I was inspired and encouraged to do this by a dear friend of mine who has been in a wheelchair for twenty-six years since the accident that cost him the use of his lower limbs.
Anything else you would like to share?
In my book Leading Ladies, I feature 32 women, including a couple of hula-hoopers you may have heard of, who found their purpose in life with passion. But the book is more than just a collection of true stories. In writing the book I learnt some powerful lessons that energised and inspired me. I share these with my readers and I hope that reading the book will change the way they view their own life, and enable them take that next step with greater confidence. Leading Ladies is available on Amazon and most other online retailers in the UK and globally in both print and e-book format. You can also buy direct from me if you want a signed copy with a personalised message by contacting me via my FB author page.
Are you inspired to teach hulahooping?
Thanks Rohini! If you found this inspiring, check out our LiveLoveHoop Teacher Training program, which runs in Brighton, UK, on different weekends throughout the year. We can also come to your location in the UK, Europe or anywhere in the world – just get in touch with us.