Tilly Whirls Featured on Hooping.org

I got to be in the photo-of-the-day on Hooping.org! It was awesome. The day after Thanksgiving I took part in the Reston Holiday Parade with Steve’s niece, Sarah, and another local hooper, James. The three of us twirled our way down Market Street for a fairly short parade but it was an absolute blast. Better yet, there was a crowd of 15,000. We exposed 15,000 people to the fact that you can do a lot more with a hula hoop than spin it around your waist.

While we were in line and waiting to march Patch.com photographer Jessica Wallach came over to say hello (she takes photos for my site and Reston’s) and snapped a couple photos of me warming up. This is the photo that she took that was picked up by Hooping.org.

Leslie Perales, also known as Tilly Whirls, does a shoulder duckout (one-shoulder hooping) while warming up for the Reston Holiday Parade. Photo taken by Jessica Wallach

I was also on Hooping.org on Halloween for doing some sustained spinning to the theme from the Halloween movies, and I was honored to be included on the home page for that as well, but for some reason this just felt special.

Tomorrow is our last night of class for my first session teaching hoopdance at the Herndon Community Center. I’m not planning to teach any new moves, but I’ll help students with any moves they’re struggling on and other than that blast the music and jam out. The next session starts on Jan. 5 (Thursday nights at 6:45 p.m., one hour) and goes until Feb. 23.

To sign up for my next classes visit the Town of Herndon’s website, go to Parks and Rec and call the number or sign up online. In-town residents started registering Dec. 7—out-of-town registration starts Dec. 13. Last time the class filled up (and had a wait list) within a couple weeks of registration opening so if your heart is set on it, sign up ASAP. We’re looking at adding a second class in the spring.

I’ve been trying to get some weekly hoop jams going at the HCC on Sundays and, while they’re disjointed this month, I hope to keep them going through Jan./Feb. We’ve been gathering at 2 p.m. on Sundays (hoopers just pay the daily rate for the CC). Maybe by March we can move them outdoors—once the weather is above 60 degrees we’ll head outside for sure. I just need a louder portable sound system…

One last exciting thing I wanted to mention! I signed up to go to Hoop Convergence in Carrboro, N.C. in May!!! Five days and four nights of hoop classes and workshops and yoga and organic food and hoop jams and networking with hoopers and making new friends from around the world and I’m REALLY excited. Enough to use CAPS and multiple exclamation points. Yup. If you’re a hooper interested in meeting up in beautiful N.C. for an extended hoop weekend, click here for more info.

Now I leave you with a recent video and some links to click! (I was feeling super girlie when I put the video together and did the title in hot pink swirly-ish font and now I’m like, “Whoa… Too much.”)

Links! Links! Links!

I was feeling Christmassy last week—pulled out some Alvin & the Chipmunks for a video. Mostly because of Alvin’s mutual love of hula hoops. It’s cheesy and fun and, yes, I am wearing bustle bum pants.
•  “The day I learned the three-beat weave” video—this took weeks to learn. Then when it happens it’s like, “Jeez. That’s it?! That’s all I was missing? Sweet!”
Enough of me, check out Matthias right this minute—seriously freaking sweet hooper. I MUST learn how to break, reverse and paddle like that. Steve thought the video was edited and sped up. Totally not. He’s just moving THAT. FAST. I told Steve that as a hooper, you hear a song and you want to move to the beat of it and you feel driven to do so. When a song comes on that’s fast and you feel compelled to move but don’t have the skill to move that fast yet the longing to move at the speed of the music is almost painful. And look at the smile on Matthias’ face. That’s flow. That’s pure joy. That’s why I love to hoop.
•  And lastly, a fantastic Hooping.org article by Shannon “Hoop Love” on what it means to be a community of hoopers. Check out her site while you’re at it, and definitely watch her encouraging video that shows big hoops are awesome and big girls can most definitely rock out with a hoop. Hoops for all!

P.S. If I updated more often I wouldn’t have such long posts, huh? New goal. Post at least once a week.

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