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When was the Hula-Hoop invented?

My family has been a Hula-Hooping family since I can remember. Not that we were spectacular by any stretch, but we could Hula-Hoop for significant lengths of time and also mastered the arm, knee, and neck hooping as well.


It's said Hoops have been used for centuries, which makes since, it's basically the wheel, right? I can imagine, "This wheel is so round I can swing it around my waist!" Ok, who knows, but let's focus on the Hula-Hoop as we know it.


The brand name Hula-Hoop was marketed in 1958 by the company, Wham-o. Wham-o was founded in 1948 and consisted of two friends, Arthur Melin and Richard Knerr. They are the duo/company responsible for selling a slingshot used to shoot meat chunks up to falcons... yep, that was a thing they did apparently. The name Wham-o, was actually the sound a sling-shot makes... allegedly. Their big ticket item was in 1957 with their first famous toy, the ultra popular 'Pluto Platter'! ... Oh, you don't know what a Pluto Platter is?! Maybe renaming the toy to call it a 'Frisbee' was a smart move!


The following year (1958), Hula-Hoop hit the market. Designed after a wooden hoop the men had seen Australian children using in gym class, then men named it "Hula" because of the motion of your hips to keep the hoop going. They designed theirs out of plastic and within the first four months had sold 25 million! Hula-Hoop mania was short-lived, but remains a childhood toy... Now they even come with lights which makes Hula-Hooping extra fun!




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