She owns two Guinness World Records and has appeared on “Good Morning America” and “America’s Got Talent” — all thanks to her hula hoop.
At the Bolder Boulder 10-kilometer footrace, Betty Shurin — aka Betty Hoops — earned world records for speed and distance without stopping or dropping her hoop. Her efforts inspired so many imitators to enter the race that the event has banned hula hoops.
Since 1999, the Aspen resident has been teaching hula-hoop fitness classes in the Roaring Fork Valley, and from Friday through Oct. 10, she will offer instruction in Aspen and Basalt. Shurin, 43, attributes her own weight loss and back-pain alleviation to the hoop. But she said it’s not as simple as just buying a cheap hoop and twirling it around.
Using custom size, weight and flex, she has designed a one-size-fits-all hoop that allows participants to get the most out of their workout.
“I’m one of the only instructors with the right gear,” she said.
Unlike the hundreds of classes that have sprouted up since 1999, Shurin said her class features yoga routines as well as sport-training exercises, simulating movements found in snowboarding, climbing and kayaking.
Originally from New York, Shurin competed on “America’s Got Talent” in April. She recently learned that she made it through to the celebrity judge’s round, where her talents will be on display for Howie Mandel, Howard Stern, Melanie Brown and Heidi Klum.
Shurin set her records at the Bolder Boulder in 2005, beating her time three straight years. Ever since the race banned hoops, she has been looking around the country for other events. In April 2012, she competed in the Hollywood Half-Marathon, traveling 13.1 miles while making more than 3,500 rotations.
For information on Shurin and her classes, visit www.bettyhoops.com.