Types of Tubing Used for Making Hula Hoops

by Mama Ruby
making hula hoops

Whether you are interested in making hula hoops or buying them, figuring out what type of hula hoop tubing you want can be pretty confusing, especially to beginners!  There are quite a few types of hula hoop tubing available today, and each kind of tubing generally comes in different sizes.

Here is our easy to understand guide to all the types of tubing used for making hula hoops.

Types of Tubing for Making Hula Hoops

Updated for 2022! To minimize confusion, Ruby Hooping has put together this quick guide for you.  This knowledge will help you make your own hula hoop or figure out which type of hula hoop you want to purchase from our shop.

Polyethelene (PE)

making hula hoops 100 psiThis is the black stuff that you can easily obtain from your local Home Depot or Lowe’s in the plumbing section or on Amazon delivered straight to your door for a pretty good price.  Right now at Ruby Hooping, we are using three different variations of PE tubing.

Beginner Hoops:  We make all of our beginner hula hoops out of 3/4″ 100 psi PE tubing.  3/4″ is the inner diameter of the tubing itself.  The 100 psi is the pressure rating–it describes the thickness of the walls of the tubing, so the higher the rating, the heavier it is.  100 psi is an excellent weight for beginners.

Exercise Hoops:  We also use 3/4″ PE tubing for our exercise hoops, but we also use a wider 1″ cloth grip tape on them for a little extra weight.   This is to specifically meet the demand of our customers who want a particularly heavy hoop to exercise with!  It should be noted that all hula hooping is good exercise, whether you decide to go with a weighted hoop or not.

Child Hoops: For these, we use a skinnier PE tubing.  It has a 1/2″ inner diameter, which equates to about the size of your thumb.  This is a nice medium weight for child hoops as well as intermediate hoopers who want a lighter weight hoop than the 3/4″ inner diameter PE, but don’t feel ready to use the lightweight HDPE tubing, which we’ll tell you about next.

High Density Polyethelene (HDPE)

making hula hoops hdpeAt Ruby Hooping we absolutely love using HDPE tubing for making hula hoops for advanced hoopers.  These hoops also work great for children, especially small children since they are so lightweight.  This tubing comes in a wide variety of vibrant colors and is the lightest tubing we use for making hula hoops  It is also very durable, and responsive to your body, making it perfect for hula hoop dance and tricks.

All of our HDPE tubing is either 3/4″ outer diameter or the skinnier, even lighter 5/8″ OD.  HDPE is measured by outer diameter while PE is measured by inner diameter.  That means that the 3/4″ HDPE is actually skinnier than the 3/4″ PE.  Here is a comparison:

making hula hoops tubing comparison

We also use HDPE in the natural (translucent) white color for our LED hoops which you can see and purchase here!

Update: We now offer 7/8″ HDPE, which is about the same thickness as the 3/4″ PE!  It’s lighter than PE but heavier than 3/4″ HDPE, making it a great choice for intermediate hoopers.

Polypropylene (PolyPro)

making hula hoops polyproThis is a popular type of hula hoop tubing that we think is very similar to HDPE.  There are some subtle differences in the feel of the material while hooping. 

Polypro is a little bouncier, reacts a little faster, feels a little bit softer.  It’s also less durable, more susceptible to damage by extreme temperatures and the sun, and cracks easier during use.  

Polypro is preferred by some hoopers because of it’s whippy feel!  Ruby Hooping does offer a limited supply of polypro hula hoops to satisfy our loyal customers who swear by this material!  You can get a great deal on a polypro right now by clicking here.

We hope this helped you gain a broader understanding of the various types of tubing used for making hula hoops!  Now that you are armed with this knowledge, take a stroll through our Hoop Shop!

As always, thanks for reading and your comments are always welcome below.

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Halina October 27, 2014 - 11:05 pm

Do you ship to the U.K?

rubyhooping October 28, 2014 - 3:26 pm

Yes we do Halina! 🙂

Alice August 31, 2015 - 7:40 pm

I am looking for blue hdpe 3/4 matte tube for making Hula Hoop, do you have? Shipping for EUA.
Thank you!

Alice August 31, 2015 - 7:42 pm

I am looking for also yellow and Black 3/4 HDPE metallic .
If you can get for me please let me Know.

Jackie April 24, 2019 - 4:26 pm

Thanks for explaining hop material! Where is the best place to put grip tape? I have seen a fine line of grip around the inside, thicker pieces in 3-4 areas inside, and wrapped around the entire hoop. I’m a beginner not quite intermediate, but have been using a half-done hoop for a while now, and ready to finish it with tape! Where is the standard placement? Does too much grip tape hurt your hands?

Mama Ruby May 15, 2019 - 2:06 pm

Nope! Too much grip will not hurt your hands. Grip adds weight also so can be very useful for a beginner. The more the better I say 🙂 But even a little bit is enough to help.


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