How to hola dance

Learn How to Hula Dance! | How to Hula Dance for Kids


Famous for its sandy beaches and warm weather, Hawaii is a tropical paradise. Part of what makes Hawaii so special is its rich island culture. Hawaiians have their own traditions, language, and even their own dance form called Hula. Hula is a graceful art form that is danced to the words of a song (mele) or chant (oli). Ancient Hawaiians danced Hula to tell stories about their history and to celebrate the beauty of nature. But you don’t need palm trees to enjoy Hawaiian culture. Get ready to move your feet, swing your hips, and learn to dance the Hula with Little Passports! With a these easy-to-learn dance moves, you and your little ones can bring the beauty of the islands right to your doorstep.

Step-by-Step Hula

Move your feet!

Stand facing forward with your feet hip-width apart and bend your knees. Step 8 inches to the right. Bring your left foot to meet your right foot, keeping your left foot slightly off the floor, and tap the ground once with the ball of your left foot to complete the move. Repeat, taking another step the right, bringing your feet together, and tapping the ground with the ball of your left foot. Now go back the way you came! Step to the left, bring your right foot to meet your left and tap the ground with the ball of your right foot. Repeat this move to the left again. That’s it! Continue to practice stepping two times to the right and then two times to the left until you feel comfortable with the footwork.

Did you know?  Hula is almost always danced barefoot.

Did you know?  Traditional Hawaiian instruments that accompanied Hula dances were made of shells, rocks, and even teeth!

Now add your hips!

Keeping the same pattern–two steps right and two steps left–try adding some hip movements. During the Hula, your hips should keep a gentle rocking or swaying motion–similar to the ocean waves! When you step to the right, lower your right foot toe-to-heel and lift your left hip up. As you bring your feet together, switch so that your right hip is up. Before your next step, sway your hips side-to-side. Repeat the same motion as you take your second step to the right. Remember to sway your hips side to side before each step. Now try this motion to the left: left foot toe-heel, right hip up, feet together, left hip up, rock hips side to side. Repeat. Make sure to keep your knees bent and hips loose as you continue to step and sway!

Complete the move with arm motions!

Extend your arms out to the side at shoulder level. Bend your left arm so your hand is in front of the left side of your chest and your palm is facing down. Your right arm should stay extended, with your elbow slightly bent and fingers together. As you take your steps to the right, move your arms in a gentle,  wave-like motion. Before your first step to the left, switch your arms so that the left arm is extended and the right arm is bent in front of the right side of your chest. As you take your steps to the left, continue to move your arms in a wave-like motion. As you move, keep your body relaxed and your shoulders still. Remember to switch arms every time you switch directions.

Did you know?
Hand and arm motions can be used to represent emotions or aspects of nature.

Add your own flair!

Once you’ve mastered this basic Hula dance, feel free to add some more moves from the list below to spice it up! Remember to use your face and eyes to tell the story of the song you are dancing to.

Ami: With hands on your hips, rotate your hips in a circular motion.

Ka`apuni: Keeping your hips moving in a circular motion like the Ami, pivot around the left foot and step slowly with the right foot around the left foot to complete a full turn.

Rising Sun Hand Movement: Start with your hands together at knee level. In a sweeping motion, move the arms outward and upward until they are above your head and fingertips nearly touch. Form the shape of sun with your arms extended over your head with your palms turned upward and your fingertips touching.

Uwehe: Standing with feet hip-width apart, step in place with your right foot. Keeping knees bent, lift both heels up off the ground in a popping motion, and then place them back down. Now step in place with your left foot. Do the popping motion again.

Hela: Starting with your feet together, point your right foot forward. Return feet together. Point the left foot forward. Bring your feet back together.

Love Hand Movement: With your palms facing your body, cross your hands in a X-shape on your chest to show embracing love.

Don’t forget to smile and have fun!

Learn How to Hula Dance! from Little Passports on Vimeo.


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How Do You Hula? | Wonderopolis


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  • How do you hula?
  • Who invented hula dancing?
  • What are oli and mele?

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More than 2,000 miles off the coast of California float the islands that make up the 50thstate: Hawaii. One of the most enduring images of Hawaii is that of colorful hula dancers. Hula is more than just a dance to Hawaiians, though.

No one knows for sure exactly how hula got started. There are many Hawaiian legends that hold that a god or goddess, such as Laka or Pele, invented the dance. With origins among the Hawaiian gods, it's no wonder that Hawaiians consider hula a sacred dance.

Hula is an interpretive form of dance that has been practiced for centuries in Hawaii. Legend aside, hula was probably developed by the Polynesians, the people who originally settled the Hawaiian Islands.

Hula consists of dancing accompanied by either chanting (called oli) or a song (called mele). Hula dramatizes and interprets the words of the oli or mele and gives them meaning in a visual form via movement.

Ancient hula — known as Hula Kahiko — was performed by dancers as a sacred ritual with chants and traditional percussion instruments. The oli and mele told stories of legends, history, nature and devotion to the goddesses Pele and Laka.

Over time, hula became a part of popular culture and sparked interest beyond Hawaii. Under the influence of Western culture, a new form of hula — called Hula 'Auana — developed, using songs and more modern instruments, such as guitars and ukuleles.

People who have never seen hula dancing might not understand how complicated an art form it really is. Hula dance moves vary from simple to complex steps, including the Kaholo, Ka'o, Hela, 'Uwehe and Ami.

The most basic hula dance moves include swaying of the hips and sidestepping (called "vamping"). A complete hula dance can be quite a workout. Some dancers compare hula to an athletic performance!

Hula also involves many different hand motions. The hand motions made during hula represent the words in the oli or mele. For example, hula dancers use their hands to communicate words or ideas, such as a coconut tree swaying or waves rolling on the ocean.

Female hula dancers usually wear skirts and colorful shirts, while male dancers typically wear pants or a loincloth. Dancers often also wear leis, as well as wrist and ankle bracelets.

Hula can be done while sitting (called noho dance) or standing (called luna dance). Some hulas involve both noho and luna dances.

If you live in Hawaii and want to learn hula, you can learn hula in school or groups called hālau. The hula teacher is called the kumu hula. Kumu means source of knowledge or teacher, so the kumu hula is the teacher of hula!

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Try It Out

Ready to hula? Get your dancing hips ready and do it! Grab some friends or family members to join you. The more people you recruit, the more fun you'll have.

The best way to learn to hula is from a Hawaiian dancer. If you can't make it to Hawaii, though, the next best thing is a good video tutorial.

Here are a couple of sites with good videos that will show you how to hula in no time:

If you want to make your hula even more authentic, make your own homemade lei to wear!

  • How to Hula Dance 1
  • How to Hula Dance 2

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The official portal of the Trans-Baikal Territory | A rich program awaits the participants of the festival of social dances "Hola, Chitata" in Transbaikalia A rich program awaits the project participants for three days.

Photo by the press service of the Ministry of Culture of Transbaikalia

On May 20, 21 and 22, all registered guests will have a unique opportunity to attend master classes from leading choreographers of the federal and international levels.

Dance professionals from well-known clubs in Chita will share their skills at the Regional Philharmonic on May 20 from 10.00 to 11.30, May 21 from 12.00 to 13.00 and May 22 from 11.00 to 12.15.

Evgeniy Cheremisenko from Novosibirsk - producer, teacher, DJ, co-author of the methodology for teaching kizomba to the blind, winner of the award "For contribution to the development of kizomba in Russia and the CIS", producer of the kizomba game "League of Musicians" will conduct unique kizomba master classes in the regional philharmonic society May 20 from 11. 30 to 12.30, May 21 from 13.00 to 14.00, from 16.15 to 17.30 and May 22 from 16.00 to 17.00 and from 17.00 to 18.00.

Guests from Moscow - two-time champions of Russia "Bachata stars", "Bachata Show" representatives of Russia at the World Championship "Bachata stars" and the European Championship "Europe Bachata Masters", participants of the show "Dancing on TNT" Elsa and Maxim Kopytov in the regional philharmonic society will demonstrate the features of the performance of bachata on May 20 from 12.40 to 13.45, May 21 from 15.00 to 16.00, May 22 from 12.30 to 14.00.

Professional dancer and choreographer from Brazil Alain Eufor will show the technique of salsa, bachata and kizomba on May 20 at 2:45 pm to 3:45 pm at the Regional Philharmonic, on May 21 at Decembrists Square from 8:00 pm to 9:00 pm and on May 22 from 1:45 pm to 3:00 pm at the Regional Philharmonic Society.

May 20 – the opening party “Festival Attire” awaits guests, which will be held in the museum and exhibition center of Transbaikalia for registered participants from 22. 00 to 03.00.

On May 21 from 21.00 to 23.00 there will be a street party and a master class on Lenin Square, where everyone can dance and get in a good mood. According to the organizers, the dress code for the event is yellow.

On the same day at the Palace of Culture of Railway Workers from 00.00 to 04.00 for registered participants there will be a dance show with a yellow and black dress code.

On May 22 at the museum and exhibition center from 22.00 to 03.00 the closing of the festival of social dances "Hola, Chitata" will take place. According to the organizers, the theme of the party is burlesque.

“Let us remind you that registration for the festival continues. Participation in the project is free. Anyone from 16 years old and even those who have never danced salsa, bachata and kizomba can prove themselves - participate in master classes and demonstrate their experience. This is a unique opportunity to try something new for yourself, find fresh emotions, make friends, take beautiful photos and videos, as well as an opportunity to visit the iconic places of the capital of Transbaikalia,” the project coordinators said.

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