How to Make a Hula Hoop

jasonstrauss Jason Strauss may very well be the Godfather of hooping these days. Not only has he been sharing his excellent directions on how to make a hula hoop for years, and how to make a collapsible hoop, it was Jason who gave the editors of their first hoops the night we met him. Many others who have encountered Jason over the years have similar stories to tell. We’ve been with him many times to hear the “you taught me how to make a hoop” stories too, so if you’re looking for Hoop Making 101, start with reading Jason’s instructions.

Vera made her first two hoops using those directions. Philo followed the same plan when he decided to make a hoop for the first time, only instead of a blow dryer, which he didn’t have at the time, he boiled some water and he continues to prefer the simplicity and manageability of using hot water.

While the primary difficulty involved with hoop-making continues to be simply finding the right tubing, visit our Hoop Making archives for more tips on how to make a hula hoop, a collapsable hoop, a LED Hoop and more.

71 comments for “How to Make a Hula Hoop

  1. Lia
    September 24, 2009 at 2:57 am

    hey! I’m looking to make an led hoop in the UK and have the leds but not the tubing… could anyone suggst where to find it? I’ve tried in b&q and other places…. i need HDPE so I’m told, needs to be clear and 3/4″… hard times! Cheers lovelies!

  2. Marianne T.
    October 15, 2009 at 4:02 pm

    Hey, I just made my first hoop! Lowe’s had 1″ poly tubing…tried using the hairdryer, but ended up just standing over a simmering pan of water with the tubing dipped inside for two minutes – it worked!

  3. Wendy
    October 19, 2009 at 3:03 pm

    Local supply for gaffers tape? Go to an electronics store or music store (like for bands/musicians). They use gaffers tape to secure cords on stage and also make removable stage markings. But be prepared!!! In San Antonio there is only one store that I could find (Altex) and they charge $22.00 per roll and it only comes in black or white. Trust me. Buy online.

  4. Helen
    November 2, 2009 at 5:02 pm

    I found the tubing and connectors online for 3/4″ 160psi 100 ft coil. Search for Coil Polyethylene Pipe. I paid about $27 for the tubing and the coupling @$0.38.

  5. Karli
    November 7, 2009 at 10:39 am

    I went to Home Depot, but the polyethelene tubing that they had was very soft and flexible. I didn’t have any sort of stiffness. Was I looking at the right stuff?

  6. Sonia
    November 9, 2009 at 12:49 pm

    Hi there.
    is ice hockey tape the same as gaffer tape?

  7. bre
    November 13, 2009 at 12:05 am

    I made my hoop out of 3/4″ 100 psi tubing. it was too light for me so I added water. Now my hoop is droopy. I haven’t taped it yet. What can I do to get the weight, but not a flimsy hoop with the tubing I have? I’m not prepared to go get the 3/4″ 160 psi tubing just yet.

  8. KeyGal
    November 22, 2009 at 5:05 pm

    Could blue painter’s tape be used for decorating a hoop if it was put down first so that the electrical tape would cover the edges of it? I love that color blue of the painter’s tape.

  9. amber
    January 20, 2010 at 5:31 pm

    i have a project on hula hoops how can i make the hula hoop more cool and lighted up. :)

  10. Sherri
    February 2, 2010 at 9:12 am

    After being so confused on what tubing we actually needed, my husband ended buying a 10 foot pipe of PEX 160 PSI with the 5/8 x 5/8 barb splicers. It worked for us. The 10 foot pipe makes a hoop 38 inches in diameter. So if you wanted it bigger you’d have to buy 2. The 10 foot pipes were only 5 dollars a piece. You can buy the PEX in larger coils, but it’s rather pricey that way. I’m excited to get started hooping.

  11. bodzin
    February 15, 2010 at 4:53 pm

    Hi, I am in Venezuela, where we don’t have the connectors — or “empates” as they say in Spanish. I ended up using 3/4″ polyethylene irrigation tubing for the hoop and 6 cm of 1/2″ PVC plumbing tubing for the connector. I sanded the PVC tubing lightly to give it more friction and it is holding wonderfully, so far on 15 hoops. Now, the trick is finding nice tape…

  12. Michele
    May 5, 2010 at 5:13 am

    For Canadians wanting to make their own hoops, I`ve been very happy with the white SuperPex 100psi tubing at Home Depot. Fairly heavy, and VERY rigid. They also sell the connectors. And electrical tape in various colors. Hoops cost about $6 this way.

  13. Rebecca
    May 20, 2010 at 8:06 am

    I work for an irrigation supplier and we get calls frequently from people looking for the tubing to make the hoops. The tubing is 100% safe to handle. The primary use for the tubing is low volume drip irrigation. Although, most sites will tell you to use 160 psi tubing, that isn’t the easiest to find since the tubing isn’t designed for higher pressure. So as far as any concerns with the safety of the tubing, there shouldn’t be…hope this eases any worries. Happy Hooping!!

  14. mandy
    May 25, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    for those in central florida or us .. try john deer.. they supply irrigation materials .. hope it helps

  15. July 26, 2010 at 7:36 pm

    I’ve made a few hoops from black polyethylene irrigation tubing, 3/4″ 160 psi. Some of them are definitely not very circular. I thinks this makes them harder to use, especially if I’m trying to learn new tricks. Does anyone know how get a hoop to be closer to a true circle? It seems that the tubing at the ends of the 100′ roll I bought were straighter than the rest of the roll. Hoops made from the ends are worse than the others. It would be nice if I could use all the tubing and not discard the ends. Has this been a problem for anyone else?

  16. July 27, 2010 at 6:12 am

    The ends are always straighter when buying tubing so you might want to avoid using the end pieces. Sometimes hoops don’t turn out so round too because we flatten them while forcing the connectors in. Polyethylene expands when heated and contracts when it cools. If the pipe is still warm and you’re holding it in a flat line while inserting the connector as it is cooling, your hoop will end up with a flatter spot.

    If you really want to know more about hoop making be sure to check out the Hoopmaking category ( for more info and you can throw out more specific questions in the Hoopmaking group forum too:

  17. Dee
    August 17, 2010 at 12:06 pm

    I’ve made many hoops and only now, trying to learn new tricks. I’m having a problem this time around. The tubing I was able to find is very light, and I think its making it harder to keep the hoop up. Is there a way to fill the tube to weigh it down?

  18. Allesscat
    September 22, 2010 at 8:18 am

    Anyone know how to make your own LED hoop?

  19. tiffany
    January 2, 2011 at 10:20 am

    i made a hoop using the 100 psi 1″ tubing. i found after i put the connectors in it wasn’t circular and i also found that its too heavy for my small frame. the size is great but what can i do about the weight?

    • January 2, 2011 at 11:41 am

      It might just be a case of getting used to the weight if the size is right. Adult-sized hoops are naturally heavier than what you’re going to find in a toy store. That being said, you might want to try 100 psi 3/4″ tubing. Even regardless of the psi women tend to prefer it over the 1″ pipe while guys tend to light a little more girth and weight. As for the circular issue, some seem to have a tendency to “flatten” the pipe while inserting the connector and when it cools it maintains that. Even if you “flatten” it while inserting the connector, bend it into a circular shape and hold it like that while it cools.

      For more hoop making tips check out the Hoop Making Archives.

  20. ScoobyDee78
    January 20, 2011 at 6:28 pm

    I think there must be a typo in Jasons instructions for making the hoop. If the diameter of your hoop is up to 13′ , that would be gigantic!! Maybe he means the length of the tubing is 13’? That would mean the diameter would be about 3 feet.

  21. Berries
    February 7, 2011 at 10:24 pm

    Jasons instructions say circumference, which is the distance around the outside of the hoop, not diameter.

    • February 8, 2011 at 2:03 am

      Exactly. That’s because he’s talking about the circumference, not the diameter.

  22. Msree
    February 23, 2011 at 6:23 pm

    Standing the hoop on the ground, it should be above your waist! About 42-43″ diameter. I like the 160 psi 3/4″ tubing! These hoops weigh about 1 pound 7 ounces and are circular even to the end of the tubing! My husband does a great job of making them! No complaints!

  23. April 14, 2011 at 12:18 pm

    I want to make my own hoop, i’m a beginner so can anyone tell me what size pipe i should get that would be easiest to start with. thanks :)

  24. Jen
    November 30, 2011 at 9:59 am

    How would I go about weighting to Hula Hoop and keep the weight in place so it does not move around?

    • November 30, 2011 at 10:22 am

      You could make your hoop in 2-4 sections, just make them even, and get 2-4 connectors. Put stationary weights in each of the connectors, even down into the tubing if you want. That should make sure its evenly weighted, and not moving around like water or sand. There is also always the option of the 1 inch 160 PSI tubing tripple taped, thats pretty dang heavy lol. Good Luck!

    • November 30, 2011 at 10:27 am

      Many people looking for a weighted hoop or want to make one don’t really understand that thee adult sized hoops described here are already heavier than anything you can buy in a toy store. If you follow the directions on how to make a hoop your hoop will generally weigh between and 1 and 2 pounds. I suggest trying it and if you find you would like something heavier add another layer of tape – it really does make a difference and you can keep your hoop very evenly balanced.

  25. Bec
    December 16, 2011 at 3:25 am

    Im in Australia and I have been searching for months for “hoop connectors” instead of using pop rivets and I have had no luck Ive been to the local hardware store bunnings with a picture of a connector and they have no clue it seems the only way I can get them is online and they are not cheap at all! I’m starting to think I will just have to try pop rivets like I was recommended to by another hooper… Unless someone can suggest an alternative….

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