17-year-old Sheena D'Cunha gave power to the hoop as a certified record holder of Harvard World Records, London, when she recently completed the most number of Hula Hoop rotations in a span of three minutes around her waist and head bun simultaneously.
The Parra-based lass was keen to achieve something big to be remembered by before turning 18, an age she is two months shy of. And she thought it prudent to bring her attributes and skills as a Hula Hooper to test in her endeavour to create a World Record.
"I have a student who has created a World Record under my guidance. My entire family encouraged me to go forward. I approached a few friends in the JCI, and they guided me on how to go forward. I saw a couple of records that existed and I thought to create something on my own," Sheena, who also conducts Hula Hoop classes online revealed.
Sheena was frank enough to admit she did not practise before setting the record. "I had procrastinated for a while, until one random day, I set up my timer at home and recorded my act. I did not do any practice. "I placed three Hula Hoops on my hips and another on my hair neatly tied into a bun. I did 383 spins on the hips and 230 spins on the hair within three minutes and six seconds," she divulged. This feat was later confirmed on February 20 which was conducted through a global platform.
Incidentally, Sheena was introduced to the Hula Hoop by her mother at a tender age of 4, and within three years began to perform for small shows. She came into prominence with the art form aged 11, when she won Goa's Got Talent in the Open Category at the Taleigao Community Centre.
Aside from Hula Hooping, Sheena explored other art forms like dancing, painting, playing drums and roller-skating, but then took a break from the talent that was her claim-to-fame. But the lockdown in 2020 when the pandemic hit, it provided an opportunity for Sheena to awaken and rediscover her hidden attributes as a Hula Hooper. "I explored the art form online, got to learn and understand about the existence of a hula hoop community and realised it was not just about waist and hand hooping," the Mapusa-resident stated. She came to understand the intricacies of art form which enables flair and movement to be kept in sync. Pursuing Arts in Standard XII from St Xavier's Higher Secondary, Mapusa, Sheena teaches students Hula Hooping online and is a performing artiste too. "I teach kids online and have a total of 50 students from different parts of India. I also do events and shows," she added. The art form comes with its fair share of benefits. Citing herself as an example, she says the art form helps her to keep away from stress. "It is a form of meditation, expression, fitness and dance form," Sheena maintained. She also has the distinction of performing with the Hula Hoop as an NCC Cadet at the Republic Parade in New Delhi in 2020.
Hooping as an art form is accommodating. It helps one to break from the mould from the regular and mundane. Keeps one's energy levels up and cheerful. For Sheena, a Hula Hoop leads her body through a flow, transcends her to a mind space of tranquillity and comfort. "Whenever I have a hard time, I start hooping to get myself to a ground state of the present movement," she said.
Her World Record may be heartening, and a recognition of her hard work, but then she wants it to be an example to motivate youngsters. "I want to inspire and encourage youth to work hard towards their goals. And not work on unwanted things. Rather work on something that will help them in their future," Sheena pointed out.
Not one to rest on her recent acclaim, Sheena has set her eyes on accomplishing more records. "I want to do something more crazy. Maybe perform with 20-30 hula hoops while I roller skate," the flow artist concluded.