Jocelyn Doll/Revelstoke Review                                Kya Dalton, who performs as The Gravity Addict, hula hoops to help manage her mental health.

Jocelyn Doll/Revelstoke Review Kya Dalton, who performs as The Gravity Addict, hula hoops to help manage her mental health.

VIDEO: Hooping through the tough times

Revelstokian uses hula hooping to help manage her mental wellness

Kya Dalton fell in love with hula hooping at 16, after seeing a performer at a music festival.

Thinking she would never be able to pull it off, she didn’t try it for herself until she was 22, but then she was hooked.

“My whole life I have started hobbies and as soon as I wasn’t good at them right away I just dropped them,” Dalton said. “Hooping was the first thing where I was like ‘no I am going to get good at this’.”

The first year she stuck to her living room, “closet hooping” as she described it. During the second year she moved to Edmonton and got involved with the a flow community, which includes hooping

“I took some classes there and it really helped, it took the shame out of being a beginner because you are a beginner with other people and you can support each other and just learn so much faster,” she said.

Now Dalton is sharing her love of hooping with the community. Though it started with selling hoops at markets and bringing extra along when she was practicing in public spaces so that others could join in, sharing the magic of hooping has grown into weekly classes and now weekly drop in sessions.

“It has definitely been pushing me out of my comfort zone because hooping started getting easier but the leadership and community building part is still really hard,” Dalton said.

Though it was the magic that first drew Dalton into hooping and keeps her working at it, she discovered another layer to her new hobby-managing her mental health.

“I think it might have been more of an identity thing at first, ‘that looks cool and I want to be able to show people that’,” she said. “But it quickly became a much deeper learning tool.”

Dalton has struggled with depression and anxiety since she was 12 years old.

“I was suicidal for almost my entire teenage years and struggled with eating disorders,” she said.

At the time, being outside was her saving grace. She would bike or hike daily and that helped her get through the struggles.

Now, hooping has become a part of her self care routine.

“Having to deal with failure on such a regular basis was really humbling and it helped me realize, as I got better, that failures just this super integral part and you don’t need to be embarrassed when you fail,” Dalton said.

She has also found that she goes into a meditative state while hooping.

“I am super ADHD and I have a hard time sitting down to meditate, but something about hooping and other flow arts…you get into that meditative state while you are moving,” she said.

Kya Dalton, who performs as The Gravity Addict, uses hula hooping to help manage her mental health. (Jocelyn Doll/Revelstoke Review)

Jennifer Wright, a registered clinical counsellor at Columbia River Counselling, said that daily exercise is one her recommendations for managing mental wellness, adding that she has seen studies that claim 60-90 minutes of exercise is similar to taking an antidepressant in terms of serotonin production.

She also said that there is also a lot of research supporting meditation as a form of mindfulness to help manage mental wellness and that learning a new skill, and the trial and error required to do that, is also a useful tool in managing mental health.

“For her to pick up this new exercise and try it and keep persevering through it, that is a beautiful testimony to, struggle isn’t permanent, we move through it, it doesn’t last forever,” Wright said.

Dalton who has always loved dancing, said that having a hula hoop is “like having permission to dance where ever you are.”

And as her confidence with the art grew, she started practicing while she was waiting, on the ferry to Salts Spring Island for example.

“It was terrifying and people would sometimes come up and make shitty comments like ‘you should keep practicing’ and stuff like that, and it was really good for me to just push through that and be like ‘I don’t care what you think’,” she said.

It is still hard for Dalton to explain why hooping is such a big part of her life. As her mom once said “It’s so nice to see the full physical expression of Kya.”

To others, Dalton says “It isn’t just about plastic hoops, it is really about growth and personal development and the endless possibilities that there are.”


 

@JDoll_Revy
jocelyn.doll@revelstokereview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

 

VIDEO: Hooping through the tough times

VIDEO: Hooping through the tough times

VIDEO: Hooping through the tough times

Just Posted

Revelstoke Women’s Hockey Team, circa 1905. Back row: M. Buck, N. Dunne, L. Bliss, E. Pettipiece, V. Coleman. Front row: M. Corley, B. Sawyer, A. Buck. (Revelstoke Museum & Archives Photo 66)
Glimpses of Revelstoke’s past for Jan. 14

Local history from the newspaper archives

In many ways, 2020 felt similar to bushwhacking over alder-choked mountains on a hot day, while chased ragged by mosquitos. (Liam Harrap/Revelstoke Review)
Liam’s Lowdown: What a year 2020

Each year I guess what might happen, last year taught me not to do that

Justin Kripps of Summerland and his team have competed in Olympic action and World Cup competitions in bobsleigh. (Jason Ransom-Canadian Olympic Comittee).
QUIZ: Are you ready for some winter sports?

It’s cold outside, but there are plenty of recreation opportunities in the winter months

Half of the most expensive homes are on 2080 Mackenzie Crt, which is across the street from Revelstoke Mountain Resort. (Liam Harrap/Revelstoke Review)
The 10 most valuable homes in Revelstoke for 2020

Combined, the properties are worth more than $35M

A scene from “Canada and the Gulf War: In their own words,” a video by The Memory Project, a program of Historica Canada, is shown in this undated illustration. THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO - Historica Canada
New video marks Canada’s contributions to first Gulf War on 30th anniversary

Veterans Affairs Canada says around 4,500 Canadian military personnel served during the war

Vernon’s Heron Grove retirement facility. (Good Samaritan Society photo)
Resident of Vernon’s Heron Grove retirement home tests positive for COVID-19

Interior Health has not declared an outbreak at the facility

Williams Lake physician Dr. Ivan Scrooby and medical graduate student Vionarica Gusti hold up the COSMIC Bubble Helmet. Both are part of the non-profit organization COSMIC Medical which has come together to develop devices for treating patients with COVID-19. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Group of B.C. doctors, engineers developing ‘bubble helmet’ for COVID-19 patients

The helmet could support several patients at once, says the group

A 17-year-old snowmobiler used his backcountry survival sense in preparation to spend the night on the mountain near 100 Mile House Saturday, Jan. 16, 2021 after getting lost. (South Cariboo Search and Rescue Facebook photo)
Teen praised for backcountry survival skills after getting lost in B.C.’s Cariboo mountains

“This young man did everything right after things went wrong.”

Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill, in Ottawa on December 10, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
No place for ‘far right’ in Conservative Party, Erin O’Toole says

O’Toole condemned the Capitol attack as ‘horrifying’ and sought to distance himself and the Tories from Trumpism

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

A passer by walks in High Park, in Toronto, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021. This workweek will kick off with what’s fabled to be the most depressing day of the year, during one of the darkest eras in recent history. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chris Young
‘Blue Monday’ getting you down? Exercise may be the cure, say experts

Many jurisdictions are tightening restrictions to curb soaring COVID-19 case counts

(Vernon Search and Rescue/Facebook)
Vernon Search and Rescue responds after family gets UTV stuck on SilverStar trails

The family activated their SOS beacon around 3 p.m. once they realized they could be facing a night alone in the mountains

Dastkar, a new furniture store in Vernon, features handmade, unique furniture carved from wood and inlaid with brass in the Chiniot style. The business located on 43rd Avenue was started in December 2020 but is currently unstaffed due to COVID-19 staffing shortages. (Brendan Shykora - Morning Star)
PHOTOS: Vernon’s hidden handmade furniture store

Owners of Shahi Pakwan Indian restaurant opened the South Asian furniture store in December 2020

Most Read