Pin-Up Playtime: Be the bomb with your hula skills

by - 6:00 AM

Hula Hoops made it big back in the late 1950's when the Wham-0 toy company successfully marketed their colorful plastic invention to kids and adults alike. While it retired to the Toy Hall of Fame in 1999, it's still a great way to work those hips and pass the time for children of all ages-- even if it is the world's most difficult to wrap present. Here are five facts you probably didn't know about the hula hoop.

1. Despite having gained popularity in the 50's, they've actually been around for thousands of years and were traditionally used for storytelling dance by the Native Americans. Back then, they were made out of willow, rattan or grapevines. Then in the 14th century, hoop craze hit England until the wooden or metal hoops became a primary cause of back pain and were attributed to heart failure.

2. The term "hula hoop" actually comes from British sailors who saw hula dancing on the Hawaiian islands and thought hoop dancing looked similar.

3. When the hula hoop had it's heyday, toy companies were producing more than 50,000 of them each day, collectively selling about 100 million a year.

4. The record for the most hoops twirled simultaneously is 132, set by Paul "Dizzy Hips" Blair on November 11, 2009.

5. Japanese officials banned the hula hoop in the late 50's for fear of mass impropriety. The Soviet Union also banned the activity, stating that it represented the "emptiness of American culture."

And for more fun, check out these amazing hula hoop videos. Think you can top them, darlings?

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