Five Fun Hula Hoop Games


In my after-school program, to promote healthy living and exercising, we would focus on different sports every week. During that week, students would spend each day practicing a different skill, and, on Friday, they would put together all the skills they learned to play an actual game.

For example, if the sport was soccer, the schedule would be:

Monday – Dribbling the ball
Tuesday – Passing the ball
Wednesday – Kicking the ball correctly
Thursday – Combining all the skills together in a team
Friday – 
Game Day! Using all the skills against another team

However, as the months passed, students eventually became tired of playing the same sports over and over again. Often I heard, “We have to play basketball again? Let’s do something else!” So I turned to an unlikely hero:

Hula Hoops!

The girls in my elementary school already loved hula hooping, and the boys didn’t mind hula hooping either. So I created a hula hoop unit where students did the following activities:

Game 1 Hula Hoops Musical Chairs

  • #1 – Create a big square area by using 4 cones as the corners. Explain to students that they need to stay inside the square.
  • #2 – Inside the square, I would scatter hula hoops at random spots. The number of hula hoops depend on how many students are playing. Ex: If I had 10 students, there would be 9 hula hoops.
  • #3 – Have students stand on a random spot on the invisible boundary of the square.
  • #4 – Students would walk on the lines of the square and when the teacher said “Hula!” then the students would run (or walk for younger students) into one of the hula hoops. The student who couldn’t get a hula hoop would be out.
  • #5 – Keep playing until there are two students and one hula hoop left.

Game 2 Hula Hoop Knockout

  • #1 – Give each student participating a hula hoop.
  • #2 – When you say go, have each student start walking toward each other. The objective is for students to hit another student’s hula hoop.
  • #3 – The last student standing with their hula hoop is the winner. Reminder – Tell students they are only aiming for the hula hoop only and to watch out for students’ arms.

Game 3 Hula Hoop Relay Race

  • #1 – Have students split up in groups of 4.
  • #2 – Give the first person in each group a hula hoop, then tell assign them an activity to do with the hula hoop.
  • #3 – The first person will then give the hula hoop to the 2nd person. The 2nd person has to do a different activity.
  • #4 – Keep passing the hula hoop until all the students receive a turn and have done a different activity. First team to have all their students do a hula hoop activity is the winner.

Examples of hula hoop activities include:
Hula hooping around the waist
-Hula hooping around the ankle
-Hula hooping around the arm
-Hula hooping around the waist but walking backward (harder than it sounds)
-Hula hoop jump roping, or using the hula hoop as a jump rope (better for older and more coordinated students)

Game 4 Pass the Hula Hoop – This is a great team builder where students have to work as a group to bring the hula hoop from point A to point B.

  • #1 – Split the class based on how many teams you have. Ex: if you have 2 hula hoops then split the class into two teams.
  • #2 – Have each team make a line. Then have each student hold the hand of the student next to them. If students are scared of cooties, then they can hold each other’s wrist.
  • #3 – Give the hula hoop to the first person in each team.
  • #4 – After you say “Go!” students need to pass the hula hoop to the next person and so on without letting go of their classmate’s hand. The first team to have the hula hoop reach the last person in the team is the winner.
  • #5 – If a student disconnects their hand from their classmate, then they have to start from the beginning.

Game 5 Hula Hoop Tag

  • #1 – Create a big square area by using 4 cones as the corners. Explain to students that they need to stay inside the square.
  • #2 – Explain to students that they will be walking only. 
  • #3 –  Four students will be “IT.” This students will be holding the hula hoop around their waist. These IT students must walk also.
  • #4 – The goal of the IT students is to corner a student using their hula hoops. They will have to collaborate and work together to trap a student.
  • #5 – When they surround a student, then that trapped student will switch spots with one of the IT students.

Other fun games that involve hula hoops include Hula Hoop Contest and creating an obstacle course using hula hoops and other playground equipment. Have fun!


3 thoughts on “Five Fun Hula Hoop Games

  1. Childhood | caseylove's

  2. Thanks these are wonderful…I teach p.e. workshops and all of our coaches get in a rut sometimes and we find ourselves repeating each others activities so the kids get bored…I might have to hoard these ideas!

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