Seeing as feel mostly broken from yesterdays workshop in Leamington Spa I thought it would be a fairly decent opportunity to write!
I started a new hoop class actually near home, for once, last Tuesday. It’s with Anna Hulagan (search on facebook, no web I’m afraid) in Hackney, currently in her rather unusual home. Anna lives in an odd, presumably ex-council building with loads of massive rooms (albeit low ceilings). I found it after looking confused on the street for a while (it’s number 81 but has no number on the building) and met Anna (who is tiny!). The class was great, the most populated one I’ve been too, so tricks had to be neat and tight. There wasn’t a structure as such, more of a jam with all levels, and Anna would come round and help us with anything we were struggling with (along with another pupil, I’m sorry to say her name has slipped my mind). This is definitely what I’ve been looking for in the last few months… more of a social gathering – I find I learn things easier this way and you can feed off other people’s movement. So I’ll definitely be going long to this more regularly. Anna also held a free hoop lesson at the Bank of Ideas on Thursday, but I couldn’t go – Bubs needs quite a lot of attention now – he had an operation to insert a tube into his stomach for feeding on Wednesday, and is on medicine for treating his liver. He’s currently out of water and looking quite sorry for himself:
So, next stop: Gail O’Brian’s workshop, Leamington Spa.It’s not been that long since I last went to a workshop, but looking back to December I think I had the post-Swhoop blues, so I booked myself in to see Gail and Emma Kerr (last week of January). Very clever when I have very little money! So I caught my £10 train (value, oh yes) up to lovely Warwickshire at stupid-o’clock (value for a reason!) and mooched around for a few hours. At least it was a beautiful day, and I saw the some come up.
Gail had 4 workshops: Isolations, Transitions (brilliant), elbow hooping and duck-outs (hard as nails). The Isolation workshop was quite interesting – I can do isolations but quite poorly. (For those who want to know, an isolation is where the hoop doesn’t appear to move, you are moving around it and turning it, so it appears to occupy the same space.) So it was nice to get Gail’s take on it. She also introduced pops, which were far more simple than I ever expected, and working on barrel rolls. Unfortunately the hall had been double booked, so we were in a hall downstairs (good space, freezing cold – not so good for hand work). Next workshop was Transitions – changing the plane of the hoop without stopping completely and looking confused! I won’t go into too much details but I love transitions because they are actually so simple, anything turns into a twist or un-twist. Definitely my favourite workshop of the day, but probably because I found the next 2 so difficult. Elbow hooping in itself is not that hard, but trying to incorporate anything, like passing from one elbow to the other, is very difficult. I did however learn how to stall the hoop, which I’ll definitely use in other things, and Gail also taught us how to toss the hoop off your elbow and the technique so you don’t just catch and stop – also very helpful. The final workshop, duck-outs, is hard enough for me as I can’t do duck-outs (where you duck your head out then back into to the hoop). I always shut my eyes! But I wanted to at least learn so more mechanics to it, so I tried (and got hoop rage… and stiff neck). Either way it’s always great to see Gail and meet other hoopers, so it was a real treat. Also, despite needing to save money, I bought my Burning Man hoop from Gail. It’s a 38″ collapsable polypro.
I thought I’d show you some dread updates, although I had no idea my hair looked so straggly today. Thanks camera! Also apparently need to dye it. Damn!