Monday, August 6, 2012

My Ugly Ass Hula Hoops

Like the boys in Calling the Show, I make my own hula hoops (except for the green one. I didn't make that.). And like Jesse, I am awful at decorating them. I’m good up to the point where you connect he two ends of PVC pipe to form a hoop. But when I pick up the colored tape, I get lazy.

This is my first hoop, made just over a year ago. I was going for “dingy rainbow” here. The original tape job was even worse—red and green stripes with huge uneven gaps between, like Christmas puked on a piece of pipe. I made it with ½ inch PVC, so it’s thin and a little flimsy. This can make it fun to use around the waist or neck because it warps as it rotates, which produces kind of a slinging action, but it’s not so great for tricks.

My second effort was a little better in terms of structure. ¾ inch pipe, way more solid. Better for tricks. I did not, however, improve at all in the decorating department. What’s with the white sections? Is my hoop injured and bound with gauze? I don’t know. This one is, if possible, even uglier in person than in photos.

My third hoop was purchased online. I assumed this one would be better designed and decorated than anything I’d make. The solid green is a big improvement over my hideous rainbows, but the construction of the hoop itself isn’t all that impressive. It’s a little misshapen, and dented in a couple of places. It's smaller than the other two, which is good for working out, since it takes more effort to keep a smaller hoop going.

If you’re interested in making hoops, it really is easy. Pick your favorite size PVC pipe (I really like the 3/4 inch), measure (you want the hoop to come about to your bellybutton when you stand it on the ground), cut the length you need, then connect the two ends with a PVC connector. You can glue the ends or wind some extra tape around the connection point too, to keep it from coming apart. You can also put sand or water in the pipe to weight the hoop. Weighted hoops are said to give a better workout. I prefer unweighted hoops so they can double as exercise or trick hoops.

Then, the part I can’t advise you on—decorating. Get some pretty tape. Do a better job than I do.

 And here is an action shot of Professor Anne leaping through a hoop.


  1. That is awesome! I am going to steal the PVC piping from mu mum's shed and make a hula hoop this weekend. I'm sure mine will be ugly as hell as well, but all the pretty tape in the world still won't draw the eye from the fact that I look like an idiot while trying to use it. But I'll persevere because it's fun!

    1. Haha! That's excellent. I use the ugliness of my hoops to justify the fact that I'm still not very good even after a year. I swear, if I just had a really beautiful, professionally made hoop, I'd be able to do tricks...

  2. I actually have a nice big hula hoop I bought from the hoop trainer at the gym, and ever since I read Calling The Show, I can't wait to take it out and use it. (I'll be getting it back, slightly singed, I guess, in September but that's another story.)

    I just wanted to drop you a line to tell you I think I'm probably now, after reading that book, J.A. Rock's biggest fan. And that's saying something because I bought the book after hearing two other people gush about it at RWA Nationals.

    That book was so lovely. So well written, sweet, funny, emotionally wrenching in places, and I can't say enough about it. At one point I was trying to explain why I was so moved to my daughter and I just cried, and that never, EVER happens to me. I don't review books but if I did yours I'd never be able to stop writing about all the different bit that amazed me. Thanks for a terrific, terrific read.

    1. Thank you so much, Z.A.! That really means a lot, especially coming from an author I've heard so many good things about. I'm working my way through a giant to-read list, and I definitely have some of your titles on there because every time I see one of your book blurbs I think "Oh my gosh, that sounds like something I'd love."

      Good luck with your hula hoop, and I'm very curious to know why it will be slightly singed...