Happy World Hoop Day!


May all your dreams be hoopy ones.

Some of my hoopy dreams for the coming year:

  • Teach hoop and circus classes to kids in my new neighborhood
  • Lead and participate in circus projects in Japan, Thailand, the US, and India
  • Run a circus retreat or two
  • Perform more
  • Pay my rent through hooping & circus activities

WHD Dance Video Submission Instructions

Submission Deadline: October 20, 2015

Please send only one video per performance group and ensure that WHD2015 and your locationare in the filename. There are three options for submission and here they are in my order of preference (and highest-to-lowest quality in the compilation):

Option 1: The Cloud

  1. Upload your hi-res, unedited footage to Dropbox, Drive or other hosting service.
  2. Send the e-mail notification/invitation to spinmatsuri@gmail.com

Option 2: Raw Footage on YouTube/Vimeo

  1. Upload your unedited video (no transitions, credits, etc) to YouTube or Vimeo at its highest quality.
  2. Send an e-mail with the link to spinmatsuri@gmail.com

Option 3: Edited Video on YouTube/Vimeo

  1. Upload your edited video to YouTube or Vimeo
  2. Send an e-mail with the link to spinmatsuri@gmail.com

Guru Guru


Have you ever wondered why our annual camping event is called Guru Guru Camp? Well, now you know! It describes something spinning for a long time. I love that the definition in this book is illustrated by someone spinning fire staff.

On the top of WorldHoopDay.org

Screen Shot 2015-09-11 at 12.53.54

Have you set your performance date and made World Hoop Day celebration plans? If so, make sure you go to the World Hoop Day website and get yours on the map. See where everyone else is celebrating! Just 3 weeks until the big day!

One Month to World Hoop Day – what are your plans?

World Hoop Day is just around the corner. Are you planning to celebrate?It’s not too late to put something together with your friends or hoop troupe. You can become a World Hoop Day ambassador and bring happiness to the world! Get your local hoop community together to make hoops, host a hoop disco at a senior center, school, or other facility, or give hoop lessons to kids (and adults) who need some fun in their lives. It is so satisfying to share the hoop love, and World Hoop Day is the best day to start.

Of course, I hope you’ll be incorporating the WHD Dance as part of your World Hoop Day celebrations.


Multiple Intelligences in the Social Circus

Here’s an article that I wrote for Spark Circus last month about how circus activities for kids and adults touch on many of the learning modes that are overlooks in traditional school settings.

By taking circus classes and workshops, you and your kids, students, or employees benefit with expanded ability in interpersonal teamwork, intrapersonal (self-reflection) awareness, and a slew of other skills from rhythm to logic!

Who knew you could get all of that just from a hula hoop or some juggling balls?


How I got started hooping

Seven years ago today, I was an unwilling participant in a hoop dance class. Tracey, the keitaigoddess and my dear friend, dragged me along. “It’s fun, you should try!”

I could not get behind that idea. At the time, I was doing freelance video editing, writing, and spending lots of time in front of a computer. I did not dance. And I definitely did not hula hoop.

But Tracey is persistent and was trying to help her friend, Deanne, who’d just started teaching classes in Tokyo. So after a few times saying no, I capitulated even though I didn’t want to. It was easier to say yes and get it over with.

I especially didn’t want to go to Deanne’s class because on 8/8/8 there was a World Hoop Day event at Yoyogi Park. Tracey encouraged me to attend – we’d meet there after work and it would be a fun evening together. Except that I got there before her and spied people moving and laughing through the trees. They looked much more graceful/energetic/cool/young/interesting than me. From a safe spot out of their sight, I called Tracey to see when she’d arrive and found out she was running an hour late. I left the park. My shy, low self-esteem persona could not approach the beautiful people alone.

Needless to say, I was terrified to take that first hoop dance class.

My fears were unfounded. Not only was Deanne encouraging and friendly, but I could hoop! It was such a surprise. So much fun; Tracey was right. I bought two hoops from Deanne the next day – her last two from Bunny Hoop Star in Sydney –  and regularly attended her classes and workshops. I spent a delightful half year of intensive learning and experimenting with fellow Hooplovers students, Amanda and Stina.

Hoop dance set off a cascade of new experiences. I took dance classes and started doing yoga. I performed, taught, & made hoop videos.  I tried my hand at hoop choreography with the WHD Dance. Deanne and I started Spin Matsuri Retreat as a Japan-based hoop camp experience in 2009. I attended overseas hoop & juggling events in the US, Australia, and Europe. I did a “world tour” with my own classes in 2012. Ran away with the circus in 2013 and now I am about to launch new projects in social circus.

So take it from me, if someone suggests you go to a hoop dance class your best answer is “yes!”