How to Make a Homemade "DDR" Dance Pad

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How to Make a Homemade "DDR" Dance Pad
Child at the arcade. (video game image by Andrey Rakhmatullin from

"Dance Dance Revolution," or "DDR," is a rhythm-based dance game available in the U.S. since 1999. The user stands on a dance pad, dance platform or dance stage, and responds to visual and music cues. The user responds by moving his feet to coloured arrows arranged in front, behind and to each side of the dancer. First popular in arcades, video game manufacturers supply an at-home dance pad for purchase. Some DDR players have tried to develop their own less expensive alternative.

Skill level:

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Things you need

  • 2 35-by-35-inch pieces of linoleum
  • 10 feet of 1-inch permanent foam tape
  • 10 feet of 1-inch wide brass stripping
  • 10 gauge wire
  • Third-party console or PC controller
  • Paint
  • Heavy-duty double-sided tape

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  1. 1

    Take one piece of linoleum and line the perimeter with the foam tape. Square off nine 7.5-by-9.5-inch squares with the foam tape. The squares should be in three rows of three and be separated by 2.5 inches.

  2. 2

    Attach one 3-inch brass strip to the centre of each square, except the centre square.

  3. 3

    Solder a wire to each brass strip.

  4. 4

    Attach aligning brass strips to the other piece of linoleum.

  5. 5

    Run all wires to the top of the dance pad. Cut a hole in the foam for the wires to come out.

  6. 6

    Attach the wires to the corresponding wires on the third-party controller.

  7. 7

    Align and attach the two pieces of linoleum with strong double-sided tape. The tape can run along the attached foam pieces.

  8. 8

    Paint on arrows that correspond to the game commands. From the centre square; one arrow points up in the square directly above the centre square. Paint an arrow pointing backwards behind the centre square. Paint one arrow pointing right and one pointing left on each side of the centre square. Alternate buttons can be wired as desired from the remaining four squares.

Tips and warnings

  • Carpet could also be used as the two sides of the dance pad.

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