elastic sports floor systems

Elastic Systems for Sports Floors: What You Need to Know

To pick the best sports flooring for your gym, you should have an understanding of the different flooring systems and their features.  By understanding how different kinds of floors perform, you’ll make an educated decision that you won’t regret.  In this post, we’ll discuss the types of elastic systems for sports floors.  Continue reading to learn everything you need to know about this topic and find out which kind of flooring will work best for your sports facility.

Types of Elastic Sports Floor Systems

As an athlete runs up and down the court, each step they take creates energy on the point of impact.  This energy must go somewhere, so it distributes across the floor surface. 

The international ASTM F2772 specifications and standards define three categories of elastic sports systems: point elastic, area elastic, and mixed elastic sports floor systems.  Each of the three disperses the energy differently.

Point elastic sports floors react to impact in a more localized area.  Contrary to this, area elastic floor systems disperse the energy across a wider area.  Lastly, a mixed elastic system is a combination of the previous two.  It possesses certain qualities of both point elastic and area elastic systems.  To better understand each type of flooring system’s characteristics, let’s take a more detailed look at each of the three next. 

Area Elastic Floor Systems

Area elastic floors are almost synonymous with hardwood floors.  One of the most prominent features of these flooring systems is that they provide the user with area deflection.  In short, area deflection measures how energy created by activities such as jumping or running gets dispersed throughout the floor’s surface.  The higher the value of area deflection, the more vibrations the floor will give out, and vice versa.

Area elastic floors are also known for providing a high level of shock absorption.  This makes it more comfortable to play on the court and reduces the risk of injury.  Choosing the specific hardwood flooring system with the right amount of area deflection and shock absorption will depend on your athletes’ preferences.  The types of activities taking place on the floor will also factor into the equation.

Point Elastic Floor Systems

With point elastic floors, there’s no subfloor system between the slab and the surface.  These types of floors are attached directly to the concrete slab.  With this in mind, the energy from user activity is localized. 

One of the main benefits of point elastic floor systems is the uniformity of play.  This means the users will experience the same levels of shock absorption across the entire surface.

Also, the area of deformation is much smaller compared to area elastic floor systems.  Simply put, this means the floor interacts with each athlete on an individual basis.  This makes point elastic floor systems an excellent solution for smaller sports halls and dedicated activity areas. Most synthetic floors currently on the market are considered point elastic systems.

Mixed Elastic Floor Systems

These types of floors are a combination of area elastic and point elastic floors.  A mixed elastic floor uses a synthetic flooring surface in combination with wood subfloor features.  This makes it closer to a point elastic system.  But it’s supported by an engineered subfloor instead of just a concrete slab.

These floor systems come with many advantages, including excellent durability and simple maintenance.  Moreover, quality mixed elastic polyurethane floors allow for greater shock absorption in sports that require it.  This makes them an excellent choice for all types of gymnastics arenas and many other sports exercises.

Due to such a combination of features, mixed elastic floors are considered the best option in terms of player safety and comfort.  With that said, this type of flooring is still not as popular as hardwood when it comes to highly competitive play.

What to Consider When Choosing a Flooring System

Regardless of which of the three types of elastic systems you choose, it’s crucial to pick a floor that best meets your requirements.  There are several factors you should consider when selecting a new flooring system for your sports facility:

  • Player Safety — Keeping players safe and free from injuries is crucial.  The floor must provide the right amount of traction and friction to protect users’ ligaments and joints. Choosing the appropriate type of floor will keep your players’ injury-free long-term.
  • Player Comfort — Aside from being protected, your players should also be comfortable on the gym floor.  Choosing the right flooring system for your facility will allow players to feel more natural on the court and perform better.
  • Life Expectancy and Maintenance — Installing a new sports floor is a significant financial investment.  When purchasing a new floor, make sure it’s one that will last you for a long time.  Also, the floor should be durable and easy to clean and maintain.

Make the Right Choice for Your Facility

When investing in a new sports floor, it’s worth taking the time to research and compare all of the available options.  Your gym floors are the most important investment you’ll make for your facility.  So, it’s imperative to go with the best possible option.

If you have any questions or are unsure which type of elastic sports floor system would be the best for your gym, feel free to reach out to us.  At J&J Gym Floors, we’re always happy to assist you.  Contact us online today, and our friendly and knowledgeable representatives will reach out to you as soon as possible.