Amanda Lee - Orange County, CA
Amanda is a Southern California based flow artist with a love of performing, choreographing and organizing events within the community. Her prop of choice is and will always be a hula hoop, but she also enjoys silk fans, fire fans and is now beginning to take Lyra classes with the hopes of one day performing as an Aerial artist on stage. Amanda’s style incorporates her background in dance with hoop tech sprinkled in throughout her flow. She appreciates the diversity and creativity within the flow arts community and celebrates movement in any form and style.
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Single Hooping, Doubles Hooping, Dancing (GoGo, contemporary, improv etc.), Silk Fans
I have an incredible love for teaching and envision myself teaching hoop classes for as long as I can! I love the hoop community more than anything and am planning several community meet ups in the hear future with the hopes of connecting the flow community in Orange County on a deeper level. My goal in a nutshell is to connect, inspire, and teach because I love this community more than anything.
I have a contemporary dance-inspired hoop style and I gravitate towards escalators, isolations and their variations. I focus less on tricks and more on the shapes I want the hoop to make around my body. I have found that the less I focus on the moves, the more natural my flow feels and appears to an audience. Some of my biggest inspirations are Taylor (@taylor_flows) and Morgan (@missmojangles), however, I am truly inspired by everyone's unique style,
I prefer to hoop outside and enjoy finding beautiful, yet private, areas to flow. I like to change my environment because I find new scenery definitely inspires a new style of flow. If I am in a hoop rut, I like to find a new hoop spot to spark a new style within me.
I began my flow Journey in May of 2016. I was at a music festival enjoying the magical desert vibes, when a series of swirling lights caught my eye. I watched a hoop dancer in awe effortlessly float through space, manipulating this hoop in a way that I can only describe as magic. At this moment in time I knew that I had to pick up a hoop and learn for myself. I bought my first proper dance hoop at the festival and haven't been able to put it down since.
I have always been drawn to expressive movement. I danced throughout high school and was a nationally recognized Soloist with my high school dance team. I attended Chapman University as a Dance Major and had every intention of becoming a professional commercial dancer. While I was in college, I also took several yoga teacher trainings and have been a yoga instructor for almost 5 years now in a variety of different class styles: Hatha Yoga, Vinyasa Yoga, Strength (yoga with weights), Yogalates, Yin Yoga and Restorative Yoga. I found a special place within myself practicing yoga because instead of performing for an audience I was 'performing' for myself. Yoga opened a door for me into mindful movement and I was finally able to connect to my own internal rhythm and flow.
Three years into my college career, I began experience intense, chronic pain in both of my hips. The sensations never subsided regardless of what I was doing...I felt pain dancing, practicing yoga, walking, sitting, standing and even sleeping. Eventually, the pain took such a toll on me I decided my best option for relief would be to have surgeries to correct the issue: I had two hip surgeries, one on each hip, one month apart from each other. It was the most difficult thing I had ever experienced; I was no longer connected to myself, my flow or my body. For a while, I honestly thought I had lost that part of myself forever.
Flash forward to my hoop dance discovery...hooping reconnected me to my body in ways that I cannot adequately express into words. After buying my first hula hoop, I spent five hours hula hooping to the same song. I cried tears of joy, I laughed so hard my stomach hurt and for the first time in a couple of years, I felt my body come alive again. Hula hooping saved my life and continues to do so on a daily basis. It's now my favorite way to meditate, express myself and stay active. I will forever be grateful for the girl hooping who I stumbled upon at my first festival because she was the catalyst for a life that I never imagined possible.
There are no words to truly describe how the flow community has touched my life, but I will do my best...when I used to be a dancer, I had zero self-esteem and felt so poorly about my body and the way I moved. I felt zero support from my environment and I constantly had performance anxiety because we were all trying to beat each other out for the leading role in a performance piece or to be selected as a lead choreographer for a concert. There was never a moment where I wasn't on my toes or holding my breath.
The flow community has done nothing but support my journey. The constant influx of encouragement inspires me to give my unconditional positive energy to each flow artist I encounter. I feel inspired, creative and most importantly, accepted. The flow community is a safe space in a world that has many dark corners, and I find myself diving deeper and deeper into this magical community. The flow community has connected me with so many sweet souls and throughout my hooping career I hope to connect individuals within the community through meet ups, flow inspired events and a variety of classes suitable for all levels. I hope to create the same safe space for others that the flow community has created for me.