gymnasium sports flooring

Gymnasium Flooring Systems 101: What You Need to Know

Today’s gymnasiums are multifunctional areas used for a variety of different purposes.  From flooring systems in schools and sports complexes to those in recreation and community centers, there’s one thing all floor systems have in common; they’re durable, safe, and high-performing.

Gym flooring systems have evolved significantly over the past few decades.  Nowadays, there are many options to choose from, and picking the right floor system can be challenging.  If you don’t know what to look for, you can end up selecting an unsuitable gym flooring system for your facility. 

But, don’t worry!  We’ve drafted a simple yet comprehensive guide on this crucial topic.  Read on to learn everything you need to know about gymnasium flooring systems.

Hardwood gymnasium sports Flooring Systems: Key Things to Know

Cost of Installation

The installation’s specific cost will depend on the type of hardwood flooring system, the design, surface size, and many other factors.  Because of these particular aspects, the cost of installation can vary significantly from facility to facility. 

That being said, one thing is sure — hardwood flooring systems are the most expensive solution of the three primary systems we’ll talk about on this page.  Prices can range between $11 to $16 per sq. ft.

Longevity and Maintenance

Hardwood sports flooring systems require a regular and demanding cleaning and maintenance routine.  Maintaining a hardwood sports floor is by no means an easy task.  The bare minimum for keeping a hardwood floor in usable condition is to dry mop it at least once a day.

With that said, hardwood flooring systems can last for over half a century if properly maintained. Of course, for a hardwood floor to last so long, you must also employ periodic screening and recoating, sanding and refinishing practices to ensure consistent performance and safety features.

Performance

Hardwood flooring systems offer optimum performance across the board for many different sports.  The wood surface of the floor provides excellent shock absorption and surface friction and helps reduce injuries.  The hardwood also ensures perfect ball bounce and area deflection.

Synthetic Flooring Systems: Valuable Information

Cost of Installation

Synthetic sports flooring systems cost significantly less than hardwood floors.  For this reason, they’re a popular alternative for facility operators who can’t afford a wood flooring product. Similar to hardwood sports floors, the installation costs can vary significantly.  It’s much easier to draft a ballpark cost of installation.  You can have a synthetic sports floor installed for $5 to $7 per sq. ft.

Longevity and Maintenance

Since synthetic flooring systems are water-resistant, their maintenance is much easier and more straightforward than for hardwood sports floors.  Damp mopping the floor with a citrus-based cleaner is enough to keep the surface clean and in excellent condition.

However, compared to hardwood flooring systems, synthetic floors have the downside of having a considerably shorter expected lifespan.  With proper maintenance, an artificial flooring system can last for around two decades. 

Performance

Synthetic flooring systems are designed to provide a fast, safe, and high-performing sports surface suitable for many different activities.  Synthetic floors are suited for sports like tennis, basketball, volleyball, track and field, and many other activities.  They are highly resistant to heavy impact loads, very durable against general wear and tear, and offer excellent slip resistance. 

Rubber Gym Flooring Systems: Valuable Data to Consider

Cost of Installation

Rubber gym floors are a very budget-friendly solution and the least expensive option we’ve highlighted on this page.  That said, the specific cost of rubber gym floors varies based on the factors we’ve talked about above and the type of rubber floor itself.  This is because rubber flooring systems come in tiles and roles made from different materials (PVC, carpets, artificial turfs, foam).

Longevity and Maintenance

Unlike hardwood flooring systems, rubber gym floors have a high tolerance to moisture.  This means that they aren’t susceptible to damage from indoor humidity and temperature swings. Aside from this, this also makes them much easier to maintain.  Regular mopping with a damp mop is enough to keep the floor in top condition.

Relating to rubber gym flooring systems’ expected life cycle, you can anticipate the same life expectancy as synthetic floors.  A properly installed and well-maintained rubber flooring system will last around 20 years before it starts to lose its performance features.

Performance

In terms of performance, rubber gymnasium flooring systems offer excellent features, making them one of the best sports flooring systems in today’s industry.  The biggest advantage of rubber gym floors is that they provide consistent performance in all crucial aspects.  This includes excellent ball rebound, shock absorption, and vertical deformation.

Moreover, rubber flooring systems are made from natural and recyclable materials.  This makes them very environmentally-friendly and healthy, as they have very low VOC emissions. 

Next Steps: Design the Gym Floor of Your Dreams

Depending on which gymnasium flooring system you decide to go with, you’ll have different design options to make your facility stand out from all other gyms around.  For example, if you opt for hardwood, you’ll have an unlimited choice of design options for your floor.  From color layouts and game lines to graphics, logos, and much more, you can make your gym floor unlike any other.

Can’t decide which type of flooring system would be the best choice for your facility?  Our expert flooring contractors will walk you through the entire process and make sure that you choose the best floor for your facility!

Our knowledgeable and skilled staff will help you pick a flooring system that will perfectly line up with your needs, budget, installation timeframes, and maintenance capabilities.  If you want to design and install the best gym floor for your facility, contact us today! 

Call (973) 453-2425 or reach out to us through our quick online form.

home gym flooring over carpet

What’s the Best Option for Home Gym Flooring Over Carpet?

So, you’re ready to set up your home gym.  If you’ve picked a room with laminate, tile, or hardwood flooring, you won’t have to rack your brain thinking about how you should install your gym flooring solution.  Just lay down the rubber flooring, and you’re good to go. 

But, what if you have a carpet that you don’t want to throw away in order to install the gym flooring?  Are rubber floors still your best option for home gym flooring?  If so, can you install it directly over the carpet?  Read on to learn the answers to all of these questions and many other crucial aspects you should be aware of before embarking on this household project.

Best Options for Home Gym Flooring over Carpet

The popularity of home gyms is rising.  Many people are drifting away from professional sports facilities to more comfortable and convenient home gym setups.  Plus, the recent pandemic has significantly limited the usability and availability of most gyms worldwide. 

As you can assume from the introduction, the best home gym flooring option you can conveniently install over your carpet is a rubber gym floor.  These floors are affordable, easy to install, and easy to maintain.  The latter is particularly important, as your home gym floor should be cheap and easy to keep clean.

Rubber sports flooring comes with a unique set of characteristics that make it the best option for home gym owners.  They are very resistant to wear and tear.  They also offer excellent structural stability suitable for both weightlifting and cardio exercises.

With all of the above-listed features in mind, several rubber gym flooring options stand out as the most suitable choices.  These options are ideal solutions because they can serve both as temporary pop-up solutions and permanent gym flooring solutions equally well. 

Here are the best solutions you can install directly over your carpet:

Rolled Rubber Solutions 

If you have a large home gym area, rolled rubber flooring is the best solution.  They come at a very affordable price per square foot and allow you to cover large surfaces quickly.  If you’re planning on primarily doing plyometric exercises and cardio in your home gym, rolled rubber flooring is an excellent choice.

Rubber Floor Mats 

Rubber floor mats are an ideal option if you want to cover separate and specific areas of your home gym.  For example, if you want a solid surface for stretching or weight exercises such as deadlift and squats. 

Rubber floor mats, especially larger ones, can be heavy.  Moving them around on your own can be difficult.  This is why they are more suitable if you don’t plan on moving them very often.

Rubber Floor Interlocking Tiles 

Tiles are smaller in size and weigh significantly less per piece compared to the previous two solutions.  If you’re setting up a home gym on your own, you can install this floor alone without any difficulties. 

You can customize and add tiles to make a unique design for your gym’s floor, and the tiles will hold together tightly and won’t pop up even under heavy pressure.  Plus, interlocking rubber tiles come with many unique advantages.  The most notable ones include:

  • Solid connection without any adhesives necessary
  • Durable and tear-resistant
  • Excellent airflow between tiles, minimizing the chance of mold and bacteria growth
  • Stable but cushioning surface
  • Easy to install without any prior experience
  • Eco-friendly and sustainable

It’s also worth mentioning that rubber gym tiles are the most expensive option of all we’ve talked about on this page.  Prepare to pay more per square foot than you would for other types of flooring. 

That being said, interlocking rubber floor tiles are the superior option for home gym owners. They provide you with overwhelmingly positive advantages and features that make them suitable for any home workout activity. 

Should The Type of Carpet Influence Your Home Gym Flooring Choice?

The type of carpet in your future home gym plays a vital role in how you’ll install the home gym floor.  One thing to note is that all of the above examples are based on flat and low pile carpets. But suppose you have a soft and plush carpet.  In that case, you shouldn’t install the rubber flooring directly on it. 

If you’ve found yourself in such a situation, the best way to go about it would be to place a plywood layer between the soft carpet and the rubber gym flooring that will act as a subfloor.  It’s an affordable solution and a valuable part of your setup, as it will protect both your body and your carpet.

More questions? We’ve got answers.

Hopefully, you’ve learned everything you wanted to know by reading this article.  With that said, it’s completely understandable if you have any unresolved concerns or questions that we haven’t highlighted on this page.  If so, don’t hesitate to contact us!

Our flooring professionals can provide you with helpful tips on the best floor conditions for your home gym.  We can guide you entirely through the installation process, regardless if you’re looking to install gym flooring over carpet, tiles, hardwood, or concrete. 

Reach out to us online or call (973) 801-7219 to schedule a consultation with our friendly and experienced contractors!

rubber sports floor maintenance

Top 6 Rubber Sports Floor Maintenance and Easy Cleaning Tips

Rubber sports floors are used for basketball courts, tennis and handball courts, weight rooms, indoor tracks, and countless other activities.  Rubber flooring offers excellent shock absorption and sound cushioning.  More importantly, rubber gym floors provide top performance characteristics.  Perhaps their most widely-known quality is they are one of the most durable and sturdy gym floor solutions.

That being said, they also require specific care and maintenance practice to uphold their best performance qualities.  Luckily, maintaining rubber sports floors is relatively simple and straightforward.  Here are the six best rubber sports floor maintenance tips that’ll help you maintain a high-performing and safe to use rubber gym floor.

1. Develop Precise Cleaning Routines

If you own or operate a sports facility, having a precise cleaning schedule you stick to is the most important thing you can do to ensure your floor’s maximum longevity and optimum performance. 

It’s best for optimum rubber sports floor maintenance to develop two separate routines you will follow on a precise schedule.  The first would be a daily or weekly routine, and the second would be a periodic one.  We’ll cover both cleaning routines in the following two tips, starting with the daily one first.

2. Regularly Sweep or Vacuum the Floor

Depending on how much foot traffic your sports facility gets each day, you should consider sweeping or vacuuming it at least several times per week, preferably once a day.  Doing so will allow you to remove any dirt or debris that could damage the flooring. 

Using a vacuum to clean dirt off your rubber sports floor is a more effective method than merely sweeping it.  However, you have to make sure the vacuum you’re using won’t damage the rubber flooring in any way. 

To avoid doing so, make sure to use a vacuum with a soft, rolling brush.  They are equally effective in cleaning your floor like any other vacuum, and you won’t run into any mishaps using them.

3. Use pH Neutral Cleaners for Deep Cleaning.

Besides sweeping and vacuuming your rubber floor every day, you should also have a periodic cleaning routine involving cleaners and disinfectants.  When the time comes to clean your rubber floor with a disinfectant, make sure that you’re using a cleaner that’s appropriate for use on rubber surfaces.

The best way to go about it is to always use a pH-neutral cleaner.  It does the job and doesn’t leave any harmful residue that could be detrimental to the users and the floor.  Avoid using any harsh chemicals, as they can significantly diminish the floor’s performance and longevity.

In line with that, avoid using any solvents or oil-style cleaners such as WD-40 or Paint Thinner to remove spots.  Although these chemicals are effective, they should never be used for rubber sports floors.  This is because they will also destroy the floor in the process.

Maintaining a clean and germ-free sports floor is essential, especially during the Covid-19 pandemic.  We shared with you the best cleaning tips for hardwood floors during Covid-19 before.  You can apply that advice for rubber sports floors as well to give your floor the best treatment.

4. Use Scrubbers if Necessary

Cleaning with a damp microfiber mop is a very effective way of disinfecting your rubber floor. But, if you’re maintaining a large space, it’s best to use a scrubber to clean the rubber floor as deeply as possible.  These useful tools are designed to clean a large surface quickly and easily. Depending on the size of your facility, you’ll have to decide between a walk-behind or ride-on scrubber.

5. Clean All Spills Promptly

Even though rubber gym floors are some of the most resilient ones around, too much moisture can damage any sports floor, no matter how tough it is.  If any water gets under the flooring, it can affect the adhesive that holds the floor.  To avoid this happening to your floor, make sure to clean any spills immediately after you notice them.

6. Use Dust Control Mats

Although this tip does not pertain to the rubber floor specifically, it’s an integral part of a well-thought-out rubber flooring maintenance routine.  As people walk in and out of your gym, they’ll be spreading small particles of dirt and dust all over your precious floor.  Dust control mats are a simple but very effective way to minimize this problem.

By placing dust control mats at all of your facility’s entry points, you’ll significantly reduce the amount of debris that gets tracked into your gym.  You’ll need to vacuum or wash the mats to ensure they retain their properties from time to time.

Interested in Installing Rubber Sports Flooring? Contact Us Today

Are you considering installing rubber sports flooring in your facility?  At J&J Gym Floors, we offer rubber sports flooring options in various sizes, colors, and installation types. 

Depending on your facility’s use and purpose, we can provide you with flooring solutions that meet your thickness, performance, and durability requirements. Regardless of your flooring needs, we can help you pick a rubber sports floor most suitable for your facility. 

We can install your new rubber sports floor in NY, NJ, CT, PA, DE, and MD.  If your facility is located elsewhere, we can ship our easy-to-install rubber floors to you.  Call us today at (973) 801-7219.  You can also reach out to us through our quick online form, and we’ll get back to you without delay!

protecting and maintaining gym floors

Gym Floors: Protecting and Maintaining High-Traffic Areas

The gym is a busy place and often a cherished part of the local community.  Such an active place will see a lot of foot traffic.  Protecting and maintaining gym floors, no matter what material they are, is critical.  There are certain tips and tricks for maintaining the gym floor in its entirety and high-traffic areas in particular. 

Cleaning and maintenance schedules for sports facilities

The gym is often the centerpiece of a sports facility.  Beautiful, clean, and well-maintained floors provide a positive image to guests and athletes alike.  Sports floors require routine cleaning to protect their longevity, usability, and good looks. 

  • Dust, dry, mop, and vacuum floors every day.  For high-traffic areas and events, you may need to sweep more frequently.
  • Clean spills immediately.  Water is the number one enemy of gym floors, especially hardwood maple sports floors.  Any liquid should be removed and the floor dried asap. Consider adding gym floor carpet runners to high traffic areas.  This will keep the floors cleaner and protected from moisture, especially during rainy or snowy weather. 
  • Be mindful of the type of cleaning products you use on the gym floor.  Rubber floors require mild or pH-neutral cleaners.  Artificial turf can be washed with a mild detergent or simply water and vinegar.  You can use an EPA-approved disinfectant on hardwood floors, such as Bona SuperCourt Hardwood Gym Floor Cleaner.  But be careful to rinse disinfectants thoroughly and dry asap.  Otherwise, you can damage the finish.
  • Maintain optimal heat and humidity conditions.  For maple sports floors, maintaining the right heat and humidity levels in the gym is vital.  Too low or too high humidity can warp the floors, leading to buckling and cupping

Let’s break down the top high-traffic areas in the gym and how best to maintain and clean them. 

1. Front lobby and entryways

Points of entry and exit see the highest levels of foot traffic.  The front lobby is also the first thing people will see and experience when they enter your facility, so you’ll want to pay special attention to it.  

Be mindful of how frequently you check and clean these areas.  To protect and maintain the gym floors, it’s essential to clean messes as soon as they occur.

Standing water, mud, and muck are terrible for the longevity and look of the floor.  Water can also be a slip and fall hazard.  Frequently check the area for debris and smudges on the glass doors and windows.  Clean promptly. 

Place high-quality floor covers and carpet runners in these areas.  They’ll protect the floor and sop up muck and debris that people will inevitably carry in on their shoes. 

2. Pool area

If you manage a large facility with a pool, maintaining and protecting the gym floors requires additional attention.  Moisture can wreck the floor, and it can also harbor germs — frequently dry mop the floors to prevent moisture-related problems.  Consider keeping food and drinks out of this area as well. 

3. Locker rooms and restrooms

These areas will see a lot of visitors throughout operating hours.  If your facility has a pool, then locker rooms and restroom facilities will see both wet and dry visitors.  Throughout the day, you’ll want to review these high-traffic areas for cleanliness and slip and fall hazards.

Keep restroom fixtures clean and sanitized throughout the day.  Check shower facilities and clean standing water and moisture build-up.  This will help prevent slip and fall accidents, but it will also prevent mold from forming.  Clean the floors often, and keep them dry.

Maintaining high-traffic areas for different floor types.

Your facility may offer rubber flooring, artificial turf, hardwood, or a combination of all three. There are different maintenance techniques you can use for high-traffic areas for the different flooring types. 

Let’s discuss. 

Rubber flooring

Rubber gym floors can last a long time and are very durable.  They’re resistant to scratches, scuffs, and sole marks.  But for high-traffic areas, these regions can get flattened in short order. 

To maintain the longevity of your rubber gym floor, remove the tiles in high-traffic areas and swap them with tiles from low-traffic areas.  Do this periodically and you’ll maintain the rubber floor for a longer time and save money on frequent replacements. 

Artificial turf

Artificial turfs are incredibly versatile and shock-absorbent.  However, high-traffic areas can wear out and flatten quickly if not maintained. 

Regularly brush the turf to redistribute the infill.  Vacuuming frequently can also prevent high-traffic areas from looking shabby and losing their shock absorbance. 

Hardwood sports floors

Maple sports floors offer that wow factor that’s tough to beat with other flooring materials.  But, they are high-maintenance compared to rubber and artificial turf flooring. 

Water is supremely damaging to hardwood.  In high-traffic areas, especially during spring and winter, people can bring in a lot of mud, muck, and water into the gym. 

Besides frequently checking for and mopping up water quickly, you can further protect high-traffic areas on the hardwood gym floor with courtside carpet runners

These products are relatively inexpensive but will do an excellent job of protecting the gym floor underneath.  They’re much easier and affordable to replace than fixing and replacing hardwood flooring. 

Maintaining and protecting gym floor high-traffic areas: Key takeaways.

Vigilance and employing specific cleaning and maintenance techniques for the flooring material will go a long way toward protecting high-traffic areas from damage.  A clean, well-maintained facility delights users and will help you sustain and grow a customer base. 

Has your gym floor sustained damage?  Or are you looking to prevent damage with affordable and effective courtside runner carpets?  Contact us today online or at (973) 801-7219.  We’ll be happy to discuss how we can help you best maintain your sports facility.

hardwood floor concrete slab problems

Heed These Warning Signs of Problems with a Hardwood Floor on a Concrete Slab

Concrete is known for its high water absorption abilities, and hardwood is susceptible to moisture damage.  If a hardwood gym floor isn’t installed correctly, the hardwood floor on concrete slab problems will quickly show.  To help you recognize the early warning signs of hardwood floor failure, we’ll give you a few examples and warning signs to heed. 

Moisture Management in the Slab Before the Installation

Moisture can cause an array of hardwood problems.  That’s why, before installing a hardwood floor, the contractor must make sure the slab meets all the required standards for the installation.  The contractor should run three different tests to determine whether or not the slab is ready

The three requirements for which your flooring contractor should test the slab are:

  • Dryness Before installing the hardwood floorboards, the slab should be left to dry for at least 60 days after pouring.  Rushing the process can result in a humid concrete slab, which will lead to hardwood water damage.
  • Flatness — If the hardwood floor is installed over a slab that isn’t completely flat, it will suffer greatly in terms of performance.  There will be dead spots, vibration, and ball bounce problems, as well as many aesthetic issues.
  • Softness — The concrete slab should range between 3,000 P.S.I. and 3,500 P.S.I.  In other words, it should be soft enough to support an installation but not too soft to contain too much moisture.

Early Signs of Moisture-Related Hardwood Problems

Cupping, crowning, or buckling are all more severe and apparent signs of underlying hardwood problems.  They’re easy to spot and often occur when the wood is already too far gone to reuse. On the other hand, there are several early warning signs of hardwood floor on concrete slab problems that aren’t nearly as dramatic. 

These issues can be fixed if you take prompt action.  Some of the most common early signs of moisture-related hardwood problems include the following:

Improper Acclimation or Poor Installation

Suppose you’ve just had a new hardwood floor installed directly over a concrete slab.  In that case, the problem might lie in poor installation or improper acclimation.  The wood must be acclimated to the temperature of the facility where it will be installed. 

Failing to do so can lead to excessive wood expansion or contraction problems early on and more significant issues like buckling as time goes by.  Poor installation can also cause the hardwood to absorb too much moisture and deteriorate rapidly.

Persistent Condensation

If water droplets often form on your hardwood’s surface without any apparent reason, it could be a sign that your floorboards are soaked underneath.  High relative humidity in your facility and fluctuating indoor temperature can cause condensation problems between the slab and the floorboards.  A simple way to check on your sports facility’s relative humidity conditions is to use a thermo-hygrometer.

Stale and Moldy Odors

Where there’s excessive moisture, bacteria are bound to show up.  As bacteria multiply and spread underneath your hardwood floor, they may give off strong and unpleasant odors. 

Moisture promotes rapid bacteria and mold growth in wood.  Moldy odors can be a big sign that you have problems with moisture levels between the hardwood floor and the concrete slab.

Water Intrusion

Any moisture that gets between the slab and the hardwood floor can cause significant problems over time.  Leaks from nearby appliances, groundwater intrusion, or simply condensation and excessive moisture can lead to your hardwood failing.  These signs are often far more difficult to spot early on, as most of them aren’t visible on the surface.

Make sure to keep all of these tips in mind, as they can help you save a lot of money on maintenance in the long run. If you notice any signs early on, you’ll have a better chance of restoring a water-damaged floor and won’t have to replace it.

Is A Subfloor Necessary for A Hardwood Gym Floor?

Gym subfloors are an essential part of every flooring system.  Unfortunately, not many sports facility operators are aware of this.  Subfloor materials such as rubber pads and plywood significantly contribute to the hardwood floor’s overall quality and performance.

According to the official MFMA specifications, there are three types of subfloor designs, each with different characteristics and advantages.  Your needs and the purpose of your sports facility will impact which of the three types of subfloors you’ll choose.

Do you already have a hardwood sports floor that’s installed directly over a concrete slab?  You may worry that it’s too expensive for you to plan for a subfloor installation project.  In that case, the best you can do is watch for the warning signs of hardwood floors on concrete slab problems and promptly mitigate them.

Is Your Hardwood Floor Failing?

Being proactive and regularly maintaining your hardwood floor are the best ways to prevent expensive repairs.  Even more importantly, being proactive will prevent you from having to replace your entire indoor court prematurely. 

In some cases, hardwood floors on concrete slab problems come down to improper installation. Contractors who take shortcuts often make mistakes, which tend to show quickly in this business — especially when working over concrete.

If you’ve noticed any early signs that point to your hardwood failing, take care of the problem without delay.  Contact us, and we’ll be happy to help!  Call (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form, and we’ll get back to you asap.

gym floor repair 101

Your Guide to Gym Floor Repair 101

Hardwood gym floors are one of the most durable sports flooring solutions.  However, they still require regular maintenance and occasional repairs to retain its performance and safety qualities.  It’s essential to know your hardwood floor’s care needs and be able to determine when it needs to be repaired.  In this gym floor repair guide, we’ll highlight all of the hardwood repair challenges you need to keep tight control of to get the most out of your gym floor. 

Common Hardwood Repair Challenges

Each gym floor is slightly different, but they require relatively similar maintenance practices and repair activities.  Here are the four most common hardwood gym floor repairs you should address without delay:

Water Damage

Water damage is undoubtedly one of the most severe problems that can affect your hardwood sports floor.  It can lead to many hardwood floor problems, most notably cupping and buckling

The latter issue, in particular, is the floor’s reaction to extreme humidity and excessive water damage.  It is possible to repair a water-damaged floor if the damage is not too far gone.  With that in mind, repairing a water-damaged hardwood floor is a multi-step process. 

First, the contractor will need to completely dry off the surface and identify the source of water damage.  Then, depending on the severity of the damage, they’ll suggest a repair or a complete replacement of your damaged hardwood floor.  A completely new installation is often required, as the damaged boards can’t return to their normal position. 

Scratches and Dents

Dents and scratches are an unavoidable result of everyday hardwood floor use.  Daily wear and tear is something every hardwood floor experiences, and there’s no way to prevent this. 

If you operate a multi-purpose sports facility, utilizing floor covers can help prevent deeper dents that could damage your floor’s performance and safety characteristics.  The best way to fix scratches and dents is to sand down the floor, fill in any deeper dents, and screen and recoat the entire surface. 

Loose or Cracked Boards

This issue makes up the bulk of gym floor repairs, as it’s a typical result of frequent floor use. Loose and cracked boards are usually fixed or replaced during a sanding and refinishing project.  In most cases, a loose board is nailed back in place.  Cracked boards are repaired with wood filler, providing that they’re not moving.  Otherwise, the flooring contractor will need to install a replacement board.

Loose or cracked boards might also be a telltale sign that your hardwood floor is getting near the end of its lifecycle.  If your gym floor has been used for several decades and is starting to crack in multiple places, consider installing a completely new one. 

Discoloration and Staining

Discoloration and staining is not such a dangerous problem as those above, but one you should still fix without delay.  Discoloration often occurs in high-traffic areas, as heavy foot traffic will lead to the floor deteriorating over time.  Both of these issues are relatively straightforward to fix. In such cases, all your floor needs is a screening and recoating, and it should look as good as new.

If you’ve noticed any of these four signs, your floor is due for a replacement or at least a makeover.  Some of these signs are an indication of more severe damage.  That being said, you should act upon each of them to mitigate the damage and prevent even costlier repairs and renovations. 

Patching a Hardwood Floor: The Quick and Fast Way

Patching up and fixing a hardwood floor is a demanding project and needs to be done right.  The correct way that this process should be done is by sanding down the entire surface, not just the patch that’s being replaced.  This will make sure that the whole surface is uniform and of equal color.  That way, no one will be able to notice that you’ve patched up the floor.

With that said, repairing a hardwood gym floor the right way requires a lot of time and effort. Moreover, it costs a lot of money.  Some facility operators can’t afford to shut down their gym for a couple of weeks or cash out several thousand dollars for the repair.  You can opt for a quick patch-up repair in such cases, which will act as a temporary solution to your hardwood’s problem.

If you decide to go this route, your flooring contractor will tear out the damaged part of the floor, install a new patch of floor, lace it in, and seal and finish the floor.  Repairing the floor this way will technically do the job, and the hardwood floor will perform the same way as the rest of the surface.  However, it will look significantly different from the rest of the floor and isn’t the best long-term solution.

Do You Need a Repair or a New Gym Floor?

Most, if not all, of the common hardwood challenges we addressed on this page can be fixed and repaired.  However, sometimes, the only way to go about an issue is to completely tear out your existing hardwood sports floor and install a new one. 

But, how do you tell if you need a repair or if you should invest in a new floor?  That’s why we’re here!  Our skilled and experienced flooring contractors will recommend the best course of action based on your floor’s unique needs. 

For more information on how we can help, call (973) 801-7219.  You can also reach out to us online, and we’ll get back to you without delay!

successful gym floor refinishing

The Keys to Unlocking a Successful Gym Floor Refinishing Project

A gym floor refinishing project is your opportunity to make your sports facility stand out, so make sure you don’t miss it!  As the pride of your entire facility, the gym floor rightfully deserves a lot of attention.  And, as such, you should always maintain it correctly.

When it comes to proper gym floor maintenance practices, sanding and refinishing is one of the essential long-term procedures to keep your floor in top condition.  If it’s time to treat your gym floor with a refinishing project, here are a few key aspects to keep in mind to ensure successful gym floor refinishing.

Make Your Gym Floor Stand Out with a successful gym floor refinishing project

Gym floor aesthetics have expanded significantly beyond the center circle, as was the case in the past.  Modern processing capabilities and graphic design techniques have allowed today’s hardwood gym floors to feature oversized logos, lettering, shapes, and techniques.  Nowadays, every middle school and high school can achieve a professional and sleek look.

When crafting design plans for your newly-refinished hardwood floors, color is one of the vital things to consider.  It is an essential aspect of building up your facility’s brand identity.  Facility operators are getting away from using solid-color paints and moving towards more stains that highlight the maple’s natural color. 

There are many different ways to achieve a specific and unique look for your hardwood gym floor.  Regardless of the method, a professional contractor should provide you with various aesthetic options and floor design techniques to create memorable scenes and design patterns on your hardwood floor.

Plan for the Future

Most facility operators use the gym floor refinishing project to get creative with the design patterns.  Although there’s nothing wrong with this, you should also keep in mind the floor’s future flexibility.  If properly maintained, sanded, and refinished every ten to fifteen years, the hardwood floor is likely to outlast the entire sports facility where it’s installed. 

For example, if you apply a strong stain to the wood, it will most likely impact the floor’s visual appearance for the entirety of its life.  Even when you sand it down ten years later, there will still be a noticeable discoloration in the wood from the decision you made a decade ago.

How Much Will It Cost?

All of this sounds good, but how much can you expect to spend on your gym floor refinishing project?  The ballpark price for a full sanding and refinishing project is around $3 per sq. ft. However, keep in mind that your costs can vary depending on the contractor and several other essential factors. 

We’ve covered this topic and answered many other fundamental questions about gym floor refinishing in this detailed refinishing guide.

Carefully Choose Your Finish

Apart from choosing the design features of your newly-refinished facility, you should also pay attention to the specific type of finish you’ll apply to your new hardwood gym floor. 

There are two types of finishes, each with its unique features, benefits, and drawbacks you need to consider.  They are:

  • Oil-based — The curing process in oil-based finishes results in a darker appearance of the underlying wood.  Depending on what you’re looking for, this will either be a positive or negative factor.  Oil-based finishes also take much longer to dry.
  • Water-based — Water-based finishes allow for a more transparent appearance of the hardwood floor.  However, these products require more coats to provide the wood floor with adequate protection. 

Oil-based products were the industry standard for decades.  But, over the past few years, water-based products are rapidly becoming more popular.  This is mainly due to specific federal and state regulations prohibiting the amount of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in the air. 

The federal limit for VOCs in floor finishes is set at 400 grams per liter.  That being said, many states adhere to significantly more stringent limits.  As the restrictions vary from state to state, the variety of products you can use will depend on your location.  Regardless of which option you decide to go with, make sure your contractor uses an MFMA-approved finish.

At J&J Gym Floors, we service most of NJ, NY, PA, MD, DE, and CT.  The state limit for the latter two locations is set at 275 g/L.  The regulations in the other four listed states limit VOCs in finishes at 350 g/L.

It’s always best to pick a low-VOC product to protect the students, staff, and faculty from toxic fumes.  Regulations are much stricter today than they were half a century ago, as now we know all of the potential hazards that can arise from inhaling VOC fumes. 

Most importantly, it’s crucial to choose a flooring contractor you can trust.  You need to know that you can rely on the contractor to complete the job safely and efficiently.

Planning a Successful Gym Floor Refinishing Project?  Contact Us Today

Sanding and refinishing your hardwood gym floor is the best way to prolong its life expectancy. It’s much more affordable than installing a completely new floor and will make your facility lively and aesthetically pleasing. 

With that said, there are many things to consider if you want to make sure that your project goes smoothly.  For this reason, it never hurts to get a professional opinion from a licensed and reliable contractor.

We have the experienced staff and specialist equipment to provide you with a full-scale refinishing of your hardwood gym flooring.  If you’re considering embarking on a gym floor refinishing project, we can help you get the job done correctly!  Give us a call at (973) 801-7219 or contact us online.

wood gym floor care

Wood Gym Floor Care: What’s Damaging Your Maple Sports Floor?

With proper care and maintenance, a maple sports floor can last up to 40 years or more. However, your hardwood sports floor must be well-kept and free from any damaging elements for this to be true.  To help you create a better maintenance routine that will prolong your hardwood sports floor’s life, we want to highlight the most common causes of damaged gym floors.

Water Damage

Even a small amount of water can lead to cupping.  If your hardwood floor was covered in water, even for a short period, the chances are high that it will also start buckling.  Once the water is in the wood, you can never restore it to its original condition. 

Some maintenance companies and flooring contractors will claim they can fix a water damaged floor by dehumidifying it.  But, don’t get fooled by this, as there’s no way to help the existing damaged floor. 

That being said, dehumidifying will help dry the concrete before the installation of a new hardwood floor.  This is crucial to do before a new installation, as it will make sure that the new floor is installed correctly.

Alternatively, if only a small court area has been affected, you can replace only that part and sand the entire court. This way, no one will be able to tell that your floor is patched.  More importantly, the floor won’t suffer performance-wise.

Damage from Seasonal Changes

Just as environmental fluctuations impact the outside world, they can also significantly affect your hardwood sports floor if you don’t have proper maintenance practices in place.  These effects are most prominent in winter and summer.  Depending on which part of the country you live in, you can experience extreme hot or cold spells during the summer and winter months.

Dry winter air and hot and humid summer air can cause significant damage to your sports facility.  Make sure to have your HVAC running at all times.  Even if no one uses the facility during winter or summer breaks, maintaining a stable indoor environment will allow you to avoid any damage from weather changes. 

Damages from Improper Maintenance

Aside from damage caused by water and other seasonal circumstances and elements, it’s also essential to consider the human factor.  Your maple sports floor might be suffering damage because of improper maintenance practices.  Here are some of the most common mistakes sports facility managers make:

  • Not Monitoring Indoor Humidity — Going by the MFMA recommendations, the advisable relative indoor humidity should constantly be kept between 35 and 50 percent. Also, the indoor temperature should be kept between 55 and 75 degrees year-round. Significant swings in indoor humidity and temperature can lead to excessive floor shrinkage.
  • Cleaning the Floor with Water — Cleaning with water, or even worse, employing an automated power scrubber that uses water, can quickly lead to unwanted results.  Side effects include excessive shrinkage and expansion, splintering, shaling, and cupping. You may also prematurely wear out the finish and give your court a dull appearance.
  • Not Protecting from Heavy Weight — Hardwood floors are incredibly sturdy and can handle heavy weight loads.  However, laying heavy equipment directly on the hardwood surface without any protection can lead to scratches and scuffs.  If you run a multi-purpose facility that hosts shows, recitals, proms, and other events, consider using gym floor covers to protect your hardwood floor.
  • Using Tape as Temporary Markings — This is a surprisingly common mistake among gym operators.  Using tape as temporary markings is not worth the trouble it causes. The tape can peel away layers of the finish and expose the floor to further damage. 
  • Dirty Entrances and Equipment — The gym’s entryways must be pristine at all times. Consider installing walk-off mats at every entry and exit.  Also, keep all portable equipment free of debris.  Dirty wheels and unclean gym equipment can quickly damage the hardwood floor.

Useful Wood Gym Floor Care Tips

Keep your gym floor preserved for many years.  Here are some useful hardwood floor maintenance tips:

  • Limit the Use of Cleaning Products — Harsh cleaning products can damage your hardwood’s finish.  Use a neutral cleaner and avoid changing up cleaning products too often.
  • Dry Mop Daily — Use a microfiber dust mop to effectively remove any dirt or debris from your gym floor.  Dry mop at least once a day and twice if you have a high-traffic facility.
  • Carefully Monitor Floor Conditions — The best way to mitigate any damage early is to be vigilant in monitoring your gym floor’s conditions.  When cleaning, always pay attention to any early signs of damage, such as small cracks in your hardwood and concentrated wear and tear.
  • Have a Reliable Flooring Contractor on Speed Dial — A high-quality gym floor contractor will ensure your floor is in top condition year in and year out.  You should screen and recoat at least once a year and sand and refinish your floor every 5 to 7 years.

Need Help Maintaining Your Gym Floor? Contact Us Today!

When you’ve invested in a quality hardwood maple floor, you should protect it the best you can. These wood gym floor care tips will help you develop an effective maintenance routine and ensure your gym floor’s maximum longevity. 

If you need any assistance or additional tips on how to take care of your gym floor properly, contact us right away.  Give us a call at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our quick online form.

gym floor protective covering

The Top 3 Best Protective Gym Floor Coverings

Your gymnasium floor is a significant investment.  You should always make sure that you have adequate protection and maintenance practices set in place to retain its appearance and performance features.  Protective gym floor coverings can be a useful tool in ensuring this. 

When considering gym floor coverings, the variety of options may make it challenging to pick the best solution for your sports facility.  To make the selection process easier for you, we’ve narrowed down the list to the top three best protective gym floor covers you should consider when purchasing one for your sports facility.

Why Use Gym Floor Protective Covering?

Many sports facility operators think they don’t need to employ gym floor coverings as a part of their maintenance routine.  For this reason, let’s take a few seconds to understand the reasoning behind this before digging deeper into the main topic of this post. 

Using protective gym floor covering is an integral part of proper hardwood gym floor maintenance.  Here are some of the most significant reasons why you should consider using protective covering for your gym floors:

  • Most Gyms are Multi-purpose — Gyms, especially those that are a part of a school or university, are generally multi-purpose.  Besides sports activities, they are often used for various ceremonies, events, dances, and fairs.  During such occasions, the floor experiences heavy foot traffic from hard-soled footwear.  Gym floor coverings can significantly minimize the scuffs, dents, and scrapes.
  • Coverings can Improve Your Gym’s Features — Understandably, each product offers different features.  Unfortunately, this often gets overlooked.  For example, carpet coverings are the best choice for improving your gym’s acoustics, while vinyl coverings offer enhanced slip protection. 
  • Coverings can Save You Time and Money — Even with best maintenance practices, hardwood gym floors will require an annual screening and recoating.  Using floor coverings can help you extend this timeframe, reduce your hardwood’s maintenance needs, and increase its lifespan overall.  In return, this saves you a lot of time and money you would otherwise be spending on expensive renovations. 

The Best Gym Floor Protective Coverings

Tarp Floor Covers

Tarp covers are a typical gym floor protection choice for many good reasons.  They are relatively inexpensive and can stand up to heavy foot traffic.  They’re also lightweight and easy to lay and pick up. 

When considering tarp floor covers for your facility, you should pay attention to features such as slip prevention, fire retardation, and whether the tarp sizing is standard or customizable.

Our gym floor coverings are coated on both sides with a PVC polyester mesh.  They are waterproof and fire retardant.  Even more importantly, our covers are resistant to mildew, mold, and rot. 

They are also available in various colors, so you can customize your facility in a way that suits you the best.  If you plan on frequently covering your gym floor, consider opting for one of the more heavy-duty solutions, like one of the other two coverings we’ll cover next.

Carpet Tile Floor Covers

Protective carpet tile floor covers offer the ideal features you would look for in such a product. They are durable, stylish, and slip-resistant, so you’ll make sure that everyone on the floor is comfortable and safe at all times. 

Carpet tiles are a very sleek option, but one that also offers convenient performance features. As we mentioned before, carpet coverings, especially tiled ones, can help significantly increase your gym’s acoustics.

Plus, they are effortless to install and remove, as no additional tools or adhesives are required in the process.  Compared to the previous type of floor covering, carpet tiles need only one person to lay down.

Our carpet tile floor covers are stain-resistant, fast-drying, and very easy to clean.  Tiles come in sizes of 35″ x 70″ and come in several color options.  Each tile weighs 8.2 pounds.  You can store all of your carpet tiles on a large cart, allowing for convenient use and small storage requirements.

Carpet Roll Floor Covers

Our carpet roll floor covers look like traditional carpet but are also antimicrobial, tear-resistant, and stain-resistant.  They also have a moisture barrier installed for added hardwood floor protection in case of any spills.

Sizes come at 6’’ wide with custom roll length.  Weighing just 15.5 ounces per square yard, carpet rolls are easy to set down, roll up, and don’t take up much room in your storage area. Additionally, our carpet rolls come with a straightforward top hook seaming system for wood floors, with tape included for added protection for vinyl floors.

Have Questions About Protective Gym Floor Coverings? Contact Us Today

When considering which type of floor covering would be best for your facility, you should carefully consider many different factors.  Ask questions like: 

  • How often do you use your gym for other non-sports activities? 
  • How much floor space do you need to cover, and do you have sufficient storage? 
  • Do you have a design preference? 

If you need help answering these or any other questions that cross your mind, please reach out to us.  Our experienced staff is eager to assist you in picking the best protective covering for your gym floor. 

If you’ve already decided which of the three types of coverings you want to purchase for your facility, don’t delay your decision and make sure your hardwood floor is protected.  Fill out our quick online form or call us now at (973) 801-7219.

custom wall pads for playgrounds

Why Install Custom Wall Pads for Playgrounds?

Outdoor field padding is standard for professional sports venues and even high school facilities. One area that often gets neglected when it comes to this type of equipment is the playground. Kids can be rough when playing outside, and accidents can happen.  Installing custom wall pads for playgrounds can go a long way in ensuring that every child has a fun and mishap-free time in the play area. 

In this blog post, we’ll take a closer look at the most important reasons why you should install custom wall pads on your playground.

Types of Playground Field Padding

Playground field padding includes a variety of padding solutions that can help make any playground safe and kid-friendly.  The most important types of playground field padding include:

  • Wall Padding — Wall pads are almost synonymous with the entire topic of playground field padding.  Although the specific requirements for wall padding your facility needs will vary, there’s no arguing that this safety feature is necessary for every play area.
  • Support Post Padding — Padding all support posts and columns is vital if you run an indoor playground.  If you have an outdoor playground that features any exposed concrete or metal posts near the play areas, consider installing post padding on these objects as well.
  • Crash Pads — If your outdoor playground includes a climbing area, crash pads are an absolute necessity.  Choosing the right type of crash pads is a little more complicated in comparison to other padding options.  This is because you have to consider factors such as foam composition and stiffness.

Benefits of Wall Pads for Playgrounds

When running around, pushing each other, and playing games, kids can often get carried away and cause injury to themselves or other children.  Head trauma from running into hard objects and fractures caused by falling onto hard surfaces are the two most common types of playground injuries

Besides proper supervision, the most effective way to prevent injuries on the playground is to design and adapt the play area to be safer and free from potentially unsafe parts. 

The best way to go about this is to install custom padding on all hard objects.  With that in mind, here are some of the most significant benefits custom wall pads and other playground padding solutions will bring to your play area:

  • Enhanced injury prevention in collisions 
  • Improved safety for everyone in the playground
  • Enhanced visual appearance

Characteristics of Our Wall Pads for Playgrounds

It’s also vital to note the most prominent characteristics of J&J Gym Floors Outdoor Field Padding:

  • Durable — Our wall pads for playgrounds are incredibly resistant to wear and tear.  More importantly, they are designed from quality materials and can withstand even the harshest elements when used in outdoor playgrounds.
  • Customizable — Our playground pads are highly-customizable.  You can design them in any way you want and make your playground stand out from every other in your area.
  • Easy to Install and Affordable — Safety should always be the number one priority. That’s why we’ve made our pads very user-friendly and economical.  Even if you’re working on a tight budget, you’ll be able to secure your playground with top-quality wall pads.

How to Customize Wall Pads for your Playground

It would be best if you also considered the playground’s appearance.  Custom wall pads can enhance the overall look of the play area.

Brand your playground with a mascot or logo, or give it a new look with different colors and fonts.  J&J Gym Floors Outdoor Wall Pads for playgrounds can help you achieve your design goals. Our designers will work with you to ensure you get the best-designed playground equipment for your facility.

Aside from being highly-customizable, our wall pads for playgrounds are also easy to install. The majority of our custom wall pads can be installed DIY even if you have no prior experience. If your playground is located in an area where we don’t provide installation services, we can ship the pads directly to you!

Get Custom Wall Pads for Your Playground Today

Want to upgrade your playground into a safer environment?  Our customizable and superior quality wall pads will ensure that your playground is safe for all participants. 

If you have any questions about wall pads for playgrounds or want to request a proposal for your projects, feel free to contact us anytime.  Call (973) 801-7219. Or fill out our contact form, and we’ll get back to you without delay.

how-to-fix-slippery-basketball-court

Help! My Basketball Court is Slippery. How do I Fix it?

Hardwood gym floors are specially designed to offer the right amount of surface friction.  They should always provide enough traction to keep the players safe when moving on the court — without limiting their movement and slowing them down.  But the hardwood gym floor needs to be cleaned and maintained daily.  A slippery floor can create an unstable playing surface and lead to serious player injuries.  If you want to learn how to fix your slippery basketball court, continue reading this page to discover our expert tips.

What Causes Slippery Floors?

To create an effective gym floor cleaning and maintenance regime and prevent your hardwood floor from being slippery, you should first understand what causes this issue.  The three most common causes of slippery basketball court floors are:

  • Wetness and moisture — Gym floor wet spots can cause slips and injuries.  Make sure to wipe off any spills before letting players on the court.  As your athletes train and play, they will perspire when running up and down the court.  To protect your gym floor from player sweat, regularly use dry towels to wipe the floor completely dry.
  • Dirt and debris — Dust buildup is the second most common cause of slippery floors. Grit, sand, and dirt can get trapped between the boards or in the coatings of cleaning products, creating a slippery surface.
  • Adjacent areas — Your court could also be slippery because of adjacent areas surrounding the court.  Dirty exit areas and paths to the locker could be the reason why your basketball court is slippery.

Best Tips on How to Fix a Slippery Basketball Court

If you operate a sports facility or a school gym, it’s your responsibility to ensure maximum safety and the best performance of your hardwood gym floor.  When you know what’s causing a slippery basketball court, you’ll be able to fix it.  Here are our top expert tips on how to fix a slippery basketball court.

Dry Mop

Diligent sports facility operators understand the importance of regularly dust mopping the gym floor.  However, there are a couple of things to keep in mind if you want to make the most out of your gym floor cleaning practices.  You should always make sure to dust mop before wet mopping.  This way, you’ll avoid trapping dust and dirt between the coatings when you mop your basketball court.

Traditional dust mops are great for cleaning dirt and debris from your basketball court.  They’ve been used to clean gym floors for decades. 

We advise you to use a microfiber mop since it can pick up even more dirt and get rid of even the tiniest dust particles.  Plus, microfiber mops’ added benefit is that you can use them for wet mopping (with water) if you want to make the floor extra clean.

Use Floor Covers

Using gym floor covers for your hardwood floor is a simple but very effective method for minimizing scruffs and scratches.  Gym floor covers are very beneficial for multi-purpose facilities that endure heavy foot traffic.  Floor covers can reduce wear and tear and the slipperiness of your hardwood gym floor.

Mandate Proper Gym Footwear

Wearing proper gym footwear is important for several reasons.  It protects athletes from slipping and falling.  And it also makes maintaining gym floors a lot easier.  Mandating proper footwear ensures your athletes get good traction on the floor without damaging the hardwood’s top layer. 

Sneakers with rubber soles, such as basketball and handball sneakers, work best in an indoor gym environment.

Avoid Mixing Cleaners

Mixing several floor cleaners can change your floor’s surface’s chemical balance and lead to an even slicker floor.  It’s always best to use one recommended product than to mix multiple cleaning products when cleaning your basketball court. 

If you’re having trouble removing the slippery residue from the top layer of your hardwood floor, commit to one powerful floor cleaner for the long run.  This is much more effective than switching cleaning solutions between cleaning sessions.

Don’t Overuse Automatic Scrubbers.

Auto-scrubbing your gym floor is an efficient cleaning method.  It can quickly remove stubborn stains and make your floor shine like brand new.  But you need to be very careful when using an auto scrubber. 

Improperly handling an automatic floor scrubber can cause your hardwood floor more harm than good.  You should always be sure to follow the exact manufacturer recommendations.  Your cleaning solution, scrubber, and floor pad should also be compatible with the type of floor you have. 

Sand and Refinish Your Floor to Restore Traction

In some cases, all of the practices mentioned above won’t have much effect, simply because your hardwood floor has experienced too much wear and tear.  In this case, the best solution would be to sand and refinish your gym floor. 

Sanding and refinishing is a regular maintenance practice which you should employ every three to ten years.  Higher-use, multi-purpose gyms will need sanding and refinishing more often. 

Contact Your Local Expert

If you’ve tried these tips, but your floor is still slippery, contact a qualified flooring company.  They will determine if your floor has any underlying issues causing a slippery basketball court and recommend the best way to fix it. 

Maintaining a top-quality hardwood basketball court involves many upkeep practices daily, monthly, and yearly.  If you need any assistance in maintaining your gym floor, reach out to us today!  We’ll be happy to help. Call (973) 801-7219 or simply fill out our online form, and we’ll get back to you right away.

school gym floor

The Best Flooring Choices for a School Gym Floor

The world of indoor sports is very diverse.  Choosing the right type of flooring solution for a particular sports activity can make all the difference in player safety and performance.  So, what are the best flooring choices for a school gym floor?  Let’s break it down. 

How to Choose the Best Type of Flooring for Your Gym

Before we delve deeper into each flooring material’s characteristics, we should highlight the most important criteria they must meet — ensuring a safe environment for athletes to work out. The floor should perform well in the following aspects:

  • Shock Absorption — Depending on the type of activity played on its surface, the sports floor should offer the right amount of shock absorption.  Both poor and excessive shock absorption can lead to soreness in the joints and possibly even injuries.
  • Friction — The ideal amount of friction also depends on the type of sport.  For example, a basketball court should offer just enough surface friction to prevent players from slipping, but not too much.  Otherwise, it will affect their performance and movement.
  • Maintenance — Floor hygiene is paramount.  Some floors are easier to clean than others and require fewer maintenance costs. 

Rubber Sports Flooring

Rubber sports floors for a school gym are one of the best flooring solutions currently available on the market, offering consistent performance across the board.  This includes exceptional shock absorption, ball rebound, structural stability, and vertical deformation.  Thanks to the specific manufacturing process of rubber floors, they are resistant to scratches and stains.

Rubber sports floors have very high moisture tolerance and are water-resistant.  Another great advantage of rubber sports floors is they’re one of the easiest flooring choices to maintain.  They don’t require an extensive list of tools and cleaning supplies. 

When considering whether or not a flooring material is the best choice for the school gym, many operators base their decision on price.  With that in mind, rubber sports flooring is one of the most economical options out there. Since it’s mostly made from recyclable rubber or natural rubber resources, it’s an affordable flooring solution for those on a tight budget.

Hardwood for School Gym Floor 

Hardwood flooring is almost synonymous with sports floors.  Whether it’s a high-school gym or a top-level sports arena, hardwood maple floors are the preferred solution for the vast majority of facility operators. Hardwood flooring looks beautiful and is one of the most durable flooring materials on the market.  For a school gym floor, it offers endless design options.  You can customize colors, logos, and other aesthetic features to make your hardwood court unique.

Since most hardwood floors have subfloor systems, they offer better shock absorption, ball bounce, and better overall performance for fast-paced sports. However, there are two main drawbacks of hardwood sports floors: they’re more expensive to install and require higher maintenance costs than other flooring solutions.

How to Protect a Hardwood Gym Floor

Although hardwood school gym floors are incredibly durable, they’re very prone to wear-and-tear from tables, chairs, and hard-soled shoes.  This is worth considering if you run a school gym or a multi-purpose facility with hardwood floors.  It’s essential to shield your hardwood floor when it’s not being used for sports events.

These floors are an expensive investment and require airtight protection if you want to ensure maximum longevity.  One of the most effective ways of protecting your multi-purpose hardwood flooring from scratches and scuffs is to use floor covers.  They’re simple, easy to use, and are a handy tool for protecting your hardwood floor.

Polyurethane School Gym Floor

Polyurethane sports floors are the most versatile of the three on this page and they’re suitable for almost any sports activity.  Polyurethane is an excellent choice for multi-purpose sports facilities.  The material offers excellent wear-and-tear resistance, and you can easily resurface it when needed. 

As an all-around sports flooring solution, polyurethane can be used for recreational and professional sports and non-sporting events and manifestations.

While they can’t match hardwood sports floors’ performance in a sport such as basketball, polyurethane sports floors can be used for many types of sports activities.  Much like rubber floors, polyurethane flooring solutions are very durable and can endure heavy equipment and athletic activity.  This makes them an ideal solution for any fitness center, strength training facility, or school gym floor.  

School Gym Flooring: A Final Takeaway 

When installing a new sports floor, you’ll have the option of choosing from all kinds of traditional and modern solutions.  The final decision for flooring ultimately comes down to the activities that will be performed on it. Carefully consider all of the essential aspects, and preferably, consult with an expert contractor before making the final decision.

At J&J Gym Floors, we provide a complete sports flooring solution for your facility.  Our experts will work with you to design a safe and reliable school gym floor that everyone will enjoy using. With over 17,400 projects under our belt, we have the experience and knowledge to provide you with a top-quality flooring system you can rely on for decades!  If you would like to request a proposal or schedule a consultation with our flooring experts, contact us today!

Call (973) 801-7219. Or fill out our online form.

gymnasium floor design

Gymnasium Floor Design: Where Sports and Art Meet

Today’s sports flooring industry provides you with many flooring solutions.  Even if you limit your choice only to hardwood floors, you’re not stuck with only several grades of maple flooring without any individual blueprint options.  On the contrary, you’ll have a wide variety of design options to choose from. 

Designing gym floors takes an artistic approach on its own.  It allows you to pour all of your creativity into the project to create a unique and visually stunning surface that won’t leave anyone indifferent. 

With so many bold and unique options available to every gym operator, everyone can transform their plain hardwood floor into an artistic masterpiece.  Here’s what you should keep in mind if you’re designing a new gymnasium floor.

Painting Logos and Expressing your Brand

With today’s technology, you have limitless options for expressing your brand through logos and other gym floor design aspects.  Modern technology makes each step of the design and application process much more effective and reliable. 

That said, the process of choosing and designing your gym floor is anything but simplistic.  It requires you to consider several important factors to ensure the best possible outcome for your sports facility.

Designing According to Your Basketball Floor Court Layout

Your basketball court’s layout and dimensions are crucial aspects you have to factor in when designing your new gym floor — or refurbishing an old one. The layout and design specifications will vary between high school, NCAA, and NBA courts.  But there’s no reason to worry. 

Our experts will work with you every step of the way so you can make the best decisions according to your court’s layout.

Choosing the Right Grade of Maple

Under the MFMA guidelines, there are three different grades of maple flooring.  Keep in mind that these grades of maple don’t indicate quality.  The grading difference doesn’t pertain to the performance of the floor but instead to its appearance.  With that in mind, here are the three grades of maple sports flooring:

  • First Grade Maple — Uniform look with minimal knots and swirls.
  • Second Grade Maple — Slightly enhanced knots and swirls compared to the previous grade.
  • Third Grade Maple — Contains the most swirls and has a significant contrast between the boards.

Ultimately, choosing the maple grade will depend on two factors — material cost and the desired look for your facility. 

First-grade maple flooring is the most expensive because it requires a more thorough selection process to obtain uniform planks.  Such floors are suitable for high-end sports venues and other facilities like dance studios.

Applying Different Stains to Create a New Gym Floor Pattern

If you’re installing a completely new floor, the application process will be completed during the installation itself.  If you have an existing sports floor that you’re looking to renovate, the best time to apply new stain patterns and logos would be when the time comes for a regular sanding and refinishing job. 

You should sand and refinish your gym floor at least once a year — twice if it sees heavy foot traffic.  This process involves removing everything down to the bare wood.  After the contractor sands down the floor, he will clean it and apply the paint.  Lastly, the contractor will use at least two sealant coats to protect your new design and the wood from any scuffs and scratches. 

Choosing the Right Finish

Apart from the design features, you should also decide what type of finish you want for your new gym floor.  When it comes to this, you’ll have two options — water-based and oil-based finishes. Both categories have their advantages and disadvantages.  There’s really no right or wrong answer.

Water-based finishes dry more clearly, but they take several more coats to provide proper protection.  Oil-based finishes take longer to dry.  They also cure in a way so that the hardwood floor appears darker.  This is something to have in mind if you’re aiming for a specific tone of your new maple sports floor.

Develop a Unique Brand with Your Court

High school and professional sports teams often use this chance to promote their team spirit with logos and banners.  Besides providing you with an artistic outlet to represent your school or team, designing a gym floor also offers you a tremendous opportunity to promote your brand. The latter can be an excellent way of paying for your new sports floor if you’re in the position to feature sponsors on your court. 

Whatever option you decide to go for, make sure you pick a trusted and proven flooring company that can keep up with your design goals.  This way, regardless if you have a design in mind or not, you’ll be able to rely on expert help from experienced contractors. 

Often, sports organizations that come to us already have a preferred court design in mind.  We don’t shy away from accepting your requests, as we find great pleasure in helping make your ideas a reality.  If you have a court design in mind, our designer flooring experts will make it happen.

Looking to Design a Unique Gym Floor?  Contact Us Today!

Whether you’re looking to install a new gym floor or want to breathe new life into your old and worn out basketball court, we’re here for you!  As the leading gym floor company on the East Coast, we provide a full-service approach.  We will make sure that your gym floor stands out for its quality and aesthetic appearance. 

Call us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form, and we’ll be happy to assist you!

rubber sports flooring

Your Top Rubber Sports Flooring FAQs Answered

Are you planning a new athletic facility and want to install rubber sports flooring?  Chances are, you probably have a lot of questions on your mind when it comes to this particular gym surface. Rightfully so, as you must get the most out of your investment and purchase a safe, durable, and versatile rubber sports floor.

On this page, we’ve summed up the most frequently asked questions about this flooring solution and provided useful answers to each one.  Continue reading this rubber sports flooring FAQs page to find out everything you need to know before installing a rubber sports floor.

How much does rubber sports flooring cost?

Like any other sports flooring solution, the quality, thickness, and style determine the price when it comes to rubber flooring.  You can find rubber sports surfaces starting at a low of $1.50, all the way to $20 per square foot.

With that said, the most widely used rubber sports flooring solutions can be found in the $2.50-$3.50/sq.ft. range.  This makes rubber sports flooring one of the most affordable solutions on the market.  Not only does it come with a lower upfront cost than hardwood sports floors, but it also requires much less maintenance.  Rubber sports flooring doesn’t require frequent replacement or rework, saving you a lot of money in the long run.

Is rubber sports flooring safe?

Aside from being very resilient and durable, rubber quickly absorbs shock and feels comfortable to use.  It’s sufficiently sturdy to provide support while still being soft enough to provide cushioning and reduce muscle stress and pressure on the joints.  The rubber flooring surface offers a good grip and protects users from slipping.  

Rubber sports flooring is also an environmentally-friendly option — most are made from recycled natural rubber.  So, they have very low VOC emissions and don’t present any health or environmental concerns.

What types of rubber sports flooring can you get?

There are three types of rubber sports flooring options you can choose from for your facility:

  • Rubber Floor Tiles — Tiles are a practical option if you’re looking for convenient and straightforward installation.  They usually come in 12”x12”, 18”x”18”, and 36”x36” squares, with interlocking edges.  You just need to click them together, without having to use any adhesives.
  • Rubber Floor Rolls — Because they come in large sheets, rubber floor rolls are ideal for covering larger areas.  The installation process for rubber floor rolls is more complicated than with other types of rubber sports floors.  This type of rubber sports flooring allows you to create a seamless and slick look in your gym.
  • Rubber Floor Mats — This type of sports flooring is the most versatile of the three. These mats can be set next to another to cover a larger sports surface.  Or they can be used independently in smaller areas.  Rubber floor mats are the perfect choice for weightlifting rooms since they can endure heavy impact.

What design options do I have for rubber sports flooring?

Rubber flooring is a manufactured product.  So, design options are practically countless.  Aside from mixing up the styles and colors of the rubber surface, you can also brand the rubber with custom logos and graphics that promote your team or school. 

Rubber sports flooring has a consistent texture and homogenous structure.  If you choose the right type of rubber sports flooring, it can last through heavy wear and tear for years without visible surface damage.

Rubber sports flooring usually comes with a matte finish and has a very sleek and elegant look. However, this is another aspect that can be modified.  You can choose to polish the surface with a wax emulsion if you wish to make the surface stain-resistant and more durable overall.  You can even texture it to mimic the look of wood grain, stone, or any other material to your liking.  

How do you install rubber sports flooring?

Rubber flooring is relatively easy to install compared to other sports flooring solutions.  However, it’s always best to contact a professional flooring company when installing flooring in the gym or sports facility. 

For instance, when it comes to rubber floor rolls, the installation process requires laying down large rolls and gluing them to ensure optimal performance, without any surface movement.  Even a slight oversight during the installation can lead to movement and curling up at the unrolled floor edges.

One thing we should also mention is all rubber sports floors have a distinct odor.  This is something not a lot of people consider when purchasing.  The smell is less pronounced with synthetic rubber products than with natural rubber products.  It’s most noticeable right after installation but gradually dissipates in the weeks after.  

How do I clean a rubber sports floor?

When it comes to maintenance, rubber sports floors require much less attention than hardwood floors.  Since it is antimicrobial, it’s resistant to mold and mildew, as well as most staining agents.  Rubber sports flooring is easy to maintain and keep looking as good as new even after years of regular use.

All you need to do to keep the rubber floor clean is mop it with a pH-neutral cleaner and vacuum it regularly.  With this in mind, rubber sports floors do need daily cleaning.  So be sure to mop the floor every day, after all the daily activities are over.

Your top rubber sports flooring FAQs answered: Get yours installed 

If you have any other questions regarding rubber sports flooring, we are always eager to help at J&J Gym Floors!  Our sports flooring experts will answer any of your questions on this topic and help you assess your needs.  As a full-service sports flooring contractor, we will assist you in choosing the most suitable flooring solution and installing the floor for you!  Fill out our online form. Or call us at (973) 801-7219 today.

best indoor sports flooring

How to Choose the Best Indoor Sports Flooring for Your Facility

When picking a new indoor sports floor for your facility, it’s best to be mindful of the material’s functionality and value for money.  To calculate the latter, you’ll have to include the overall price of installation, durability, and maintenance cost during the floor’s lifespan.  Other significant aspects to consider are athlete safety and performance.

It’s crucial to decide on a flooring solution that best fits your facility and is most suitable for the activities it will host.  We’ll share the most useful tips to help you choose the best indoor sports flooring for your facility below. 

What to Consider When Choosing Indoor Sports Flooring

Gym flooring should be a durable and strong surface that can endure heavy foot traffic and support heavy equipment and objects.  But, each type of sports flooring material comes with unique characteristics and requirements. 

Here are some of the most crucial things you should consider when choosing your new sports floor:

  • Elasticity PropertiesElasticity is critical when it comes to sports floors.  There are different types of floors in terms of elasticity, each excelling in different areas.  Elasticity refers to area elastic, point elastic, mixed elastic, and combined elastic.  The floor’s elasticity properties directly impact athletes’ comfort and performance.
  • Key Performance Features Each type of sports floor comes with specific performance features in shock absorption ability, friction, and vertical deformation.  In this regard, each sport requires different performance features.
  • The Price — It’s no secret that most facility operators work on a tight budget.  When the time comes to install a new floor, their hands aren’t exactly free to choose just any floor without thinking through every aspect.  The floor’s price is directly tied to the floor’s longevity and performance.  It’s vital to strike the right balance between these three aspects to get the best value for money.
  • The Subfloor — Most types of flooring solutions require a subfloor.  Installing the sports floor directly on the concrete slab isn’t a viable solution for most floors, as it makes the concrete slab prone to damage.  While not a visible part of your court, the subfloor can make a significant difference in its performance characteristics.

Choose Your Floor to Fit Its Purpose

When choosing the best indoor sports flooring, you must consider what sports will be played in the facility.  Some surfaces are better at accommodating certain sports, while others can serve as universal solutions for multi-sports arenas.  Let’s take a closer look at the four most popular types of sports floors and their uses next.

Hardwood Floors

The classic choice and the go-to option for many sports facilities around the country, hardwood maple floors are the perfect flooring solution if you’re going for a traditional look and feel for your sports facility.  Hardwood floors are an excellent choice for many different indoor sports and the right answer for facilities that operate multi-sports gyms.

There are many reasons why most sports facilities decide to go for hardwood flooring.  It offers an unmatched level of quality and is suitable for both weekend athletes and professionals. Hardwood maple floors must adhere to high industry standards and provide unique performance properties.  Of course, all of this comes at a significantly higher price point, as hardwood floors are a significant financial investment.

Polyurethane Floors

Suitable for everything from athletics and basketball to hockey, polyurethane flooring provides the perfect slippage amount while also offering a cushioning effect.  It’s worth keeping in mind that polyurethane is the only type of sports flooring that’s seamless.

Vinyl Floors

Similar in performance to polyurethane floors, vinyl flooring is equally durable and a bit more versatile.  Both are suitable for a wide variety of sports.  When choosing between polyurethane and vinyl floors, the most significant factor to consider is the price.  A vinyl sports floor costs much less compared to a polyurethane one.

Rubber Floors

Easy to install, affordable, and completely recyclable, rubber sports flooring is becoming a prevalent choice among facility operators.  Since rubber is a water-resistant material, such floors are effortless to maintain and have a high moisture tolerance.

More importantly, they offer consistent performance and are very durable, making them an excellent choice for areas with heavy foot traffic and sports like weightlifting.  Rubber sports floors commonly come in three forms — rolls, mats, and rubber tiles.

Design a Reliable Indoor Sports Floor

Purchasing a new indoor sports floor for your facility is a serious project and requires a lot of planning.  Whether you’re looking for a flooring solution for a specific sport or want to ensure all-around performance for a multi-sports facility, there are many aspects to consider before you make your final decision.

Although demanding, this process doesn’t have to be stressful or overwhelming.  At J&J Gym Floors, we’re always available and eager to help our clients!  Our flooring professionals will help you get the best value for your money in terms of performance and longevity. 

To schedule a consultation, call us right away at (973) 801-7219.  You can also contact us through our quick online form, and we’ll get back to you right away.

gym floor trends

Top 4 Gym Floor Trends Coming to a Sports Facility Near You

Gym flooring plays a major part in establishing your sports facility’s character.  Understanding the latest flooring trends and techniques will allow you to maintain a beautiful, top-performing sports floor — regardless of your budget.  On this page, we’ll share the latest gym floor trends that you should be aware of when repairing or replacing your sports floor.

Top Trends for Hardwood Gym Floors

Hardwood gym floors are the most common flooring solution and a classic option that’s been around for decades.  From basketball and volleyball courts to multipurpose facilities, hardwood floors are universal.

In terms of specific trends currently tied to hardwood floors, the first things that come to mind are innovations in subfloor designs

Industry experts know that the subflooring system plays a significant role in the hardwood’s overall performance.  Subfloors have a substantial impact on player safety and comfort. 

There are three main categories of sports subfloor designs:

  • Anchored Sports Floors — Anchored sports floors combine the characteristics of both floating and fixed sports floors.  They’re mechanically fastened to the slab and retain the hardwood floor close to the concrete surface.  At the same time, anchored sports floors give the floorboards enough space to move laterally and vertically.  This allows anchored sports floors to offer excellent shock absorption without significantly impacting player movement and speed.
  • Floating Sports Floors — Unlike anchored sports floors, floating systems aren’t anchored to the concrete slab.  These sports floors can provide very high levels of shock absorption and are quite resilient.  On the other hand, they don’t offer the same stability as anchored and fixed sports floors.
  • Fixed Sports Floors — Fixed floor systems are directly attached to the concrete slab with screws or pins.  These sports floors offer minimal shock absorption.  But installation is faster than the other two options.  Fixed sports floors also offer better ball rebounds.

Aside from the three main categories, there has also been a popularization of portable sports flooring systems.  These solutions are suitable for operators who run multi-use arenas and require easy-to-install flooring systems.  Portable sports flooring can also be removed quickly if needed. 

Top Trends for Rubber Gym Floors

As high-grade sports flooring solutions become better with each passing year, sports floors’ requirements also get exponentially higher.  Rubber gym floors possess outstanding characteristics that make them ideal for many different indoor and outdoor sports. 

They offer excellent dimensional stability and indent recovery.  Rubber sports flooring solutions also offer unrivaled acoustic performance and are much quieter than hardwood sports floors.

What makes rubber sports floors one of the most popular flooring solutions in today’s industry is that they can be used for almost any sports activity.  It’s a cost-effective flooring solution that doesn’t require too much maintenance while still offering a durable and comfortable surface. From fast-paced sports like basketball and handball to indoor weight rooms, rubber gym floors are currently one of the top trends in the flooring industry.

General Flooring Trends

Making a Green Choice

Many facility operators nowadays strive to implement eco-friendly solutions in their sports facilities.  Most modern flooring solutions are made from recycled, or at least, renewable flooring products and materials.

Going green is one of the most important decisions you’ll make when repairing or replacing your sports floor.  For that reason, if you highly-value the potential environmental impact of your sports floor, we also recommend you keep these tips in mind:

  • Use only low-VOC adhesives and water-based products.
  • Avoid installing closed-loop recycled products, and insist on using high post-consumer recycled content when using renewable materials.
  • Seek manufacturers and contractors who take full responsibility in adhering to the most stringent labels and standards.
  • Do your research to ensure you pick an indoor gym floor that meets the most rigorous indoor air quality regulation.

 

Getting the best Aesthetic Appearance

Sports flooring provides an easy opportunity for teams and schools to make a unique statement and show their pride.  And most modern sports facilities take full advantage of this by emphasizing their sports floors’ overall aesthetic appearance.

Beautifully-designed floors with multicolored logos and artistic elements enhance your facility’s visual appeal and help attract a bigger crowd.  So, don’t be shy to experiment with intricate patterns, colors, and designs, as they will only make your facility more impressive and remarkable for both the fans and the players!

Need Help Choosing a Floor?

If you’re installing a new sports floor or re-opening your gym, it’s crucial to choose a sports flooring system that best meets your needs and requirements.  With so many different options available on the market, choosing the right option for your sports facility can be difficult.

When you’re ready to start your next flooring project, our flooring experts are here to help you make the best choice for your sports facility.  We’ll guide you through every step of the process and make sure you get the option you’re most satisfied with for your facility.

At J&J Gym Floors, we offer you a full-service approach.  You can count on us to deliver the best results on time and within budget.  If you have any questions regarding your flooring project, we would love to assist you in making the right decision!

Call us now at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online contact form to request a proposal or schedule a consultation.

rubber flooring best for

A Match Made in Gym Heaven: Rubber Flooring is Best for These Sports

Rubber gym floors are quickly becoming the standard for many sports facilities all over the world.  Thanks to its versatility and natural features, rubber is excellent for a variety of sports.  It offers a unique set of advantages that other sports flooring solutions can’t match.  On this page, we will highlight the sports that rubber flooring is best for and discuss why that’s the case.

Characteristics of Rubber Sports Floors

A couple of months back, we covered the advantages and features of rubber flooring in great detail.  While we won’t focus on this part extensively again, we do want to emphasize the rubber floors’ main features before moving to this page’s main topic. 

So without further ado, here are the essential characteristics of rubber floors that make them an excellent choice for a variety of sports:

  • High-performing — Uniform and stable, rubber flooring can provide good athlete stability, traction, and force reduction without impacting movement.
  • Easy to Maintain — Rubber sports floors are both simple to install and easy to maintain.  Since rubber is water-resistant, cleaning involves regular mopping with a damp mop and occasionally using a recommended disinfectant.
  • Durable — Rubber is a long-lasting material.  It’s much more durable than other flooring solutions.  Rubber flooring is also less susceptible to general wear and tear.  This allows it to offer outstanding performance features over a long period.
  • Customizable Rubber sports flooring comes in a variety of formats, thicknesses, and shapes.  It allows you to customize your gym and precisely mold the floor to fit your facility. 

Rubber Flooring is Best for the Following Sports and Activities

Rubber flooring is an excellent choice for multi-sports facilities and a suitable flooring solution for a long list of activities.  Next up, let’s take a closer look at the sports that rubber flooring is best for:

Weight Training

Without a doubt, rubber is the number one choice when it comes to flooring solutions for indoor weight rooms.  Since it comes in many varieties, rubber is suitable for any weightlifting exercise.

If you have an area designated for lifting heavy weights, you can use a thick rubber floor that’s sturdy and durable enough to endure heavy impact without breaking or tearing.  This mainly goes for Olympic lifts and heavy compound exercises such as squats or deadlifts.

You can use a thicker layer of rubber for free weight areas and other parts of your weight room, but one that’s not as dense and firm as that for heavy weight lifting areas.  This type of rubber flooring will provide the right amount of cushion for the weights.  It will also bounce back on impact to protect both the user and the floor underneath.

Running

When it comes to track and field, and mostly indoor tracks, rubber flooring is an excellent option. Not only is it durable enough to withstand heavy foot traffic, but it can also endure running spikes without getting torn or punctured.

Rubber flooring is best for other activities requiring explosive and fast movement, such as aerobics and plyometrics.  As these exercises include many rapid movement changes, running, and jumping, the surface should allow enough cushioning while also keeping the users safe from joint and ligament injuries.  Due to its characteristics, rubber flooring can provide just the right amount of shock absorption and grip for these activities.

Multipurpose Sports Facilities

If you run a multipurpose sports facility, consider installing a rubber floor as general flooring.  We recommend this because many popular indoor sports, including basketball, volleyball, soccer, and handball, can be played on rubber floors. 

If you decide to go with this option, pick a rubber floor that offers mid-level density.  Such floors still provide shock absorption while also offering excellent ball-bounce.  

Ice Rinks

While it may be a less obvious example than the above, rubber flooring is an essential part of every ice rink.  Common areas around the rink require protective surfaces for users to walk with skates on.  The rubber used for ice rinks is thicker and more durable than that for other sports. This is because it needs to endure heavy traffic and sharp skates without getting torn up.

Avoid Using Rubber Floors for These Sports

Rubber flooring is one of the most durable and resilient flooring solutions on the market, but it’s not suitable for every sport.  To maintain an objective standpoint, we should also mention the sports that rubber flooring is not best for.

Due to its gripping characteristics, rubber can offer too much friction.  This makes it unsuitable for sports that require surfaces that athletes can turn on without much grip.  Most notably, this includes sports like dancing and martial arts, in which the athletes need to have the comfort of turning their feet without experiencing grip on their joints.

Of course, you can still use it as a subfloor solution if you’re looking for a surface with not too much grip but one that still offers excellent impact absorption.

How to Choose the Right Rubber Floor for Your Facility

Versatile, durable, and high-performing rubber sports floors are an all-around solution compatible with most sports.  They’re easy to clean and more affordable than other traditional flooring options.  But, for best results, you should always make sure you choose the right type of rubber flooring based on the sports activities in your facility.  

If you’re having trouble choosing a specific type of rubber flooring for your facility, it’s always best to reach out to experienced professionals for more in-depth advice.  Our sports flooring experts will help you choose the best rubber sports floor for your sports facility and provide any information you need.

Contact us today or call (973) 801-7219 to learn more about how rubber sports floors can improve your facility!

indoor turf disinfecting

Disinfecting Indoor Turf During Covid-19: Your Top Questions Answered

Communities across the US are scrambling to reopen schools and youth sports facilities.  Many people involved in this process are making great efforts to find the optimum safety solutions to prevent the spread of Covid-19.  In our role as sports field construction experts, we’re happy to help people face this challenge head-on with actionable tips and best practices.  We’ve summarized the top questions online users asked about indoor turf disinfecting during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic on this page. 

Parents, coaches, student-athletes, and facility operators are trying to navigate this experience in the way they find to be the best for the current situation.  Continue reading to find out all of the relevant data regarding this topic.  

How long can coronavirus last on artificial grass?

Coronavirus lasts for different periods on different surfaces.  The lifespan of the virus can range from only a few hours to several days.  According to the data provided by the New England Journal of Medicine, of all of the materials included in their study, coronavirus has the longest life expectancy on plastic.  The virus can last on this material for up to 72 hours. 

Since the artificial grass blades are made from plastic, this means that Covid-19 unfortunately, has a potential life of up to three days on artificial grass turfs.

Artificial Turf Cleaner for Covid-19

A few months ago, we shared the best tips on effectively cleaning your hardwood gym floor to protect against the ongoing virus pandemic.  As a synthetic field owner or a sports facility operator, you might be wondering what the best solution is for disinfecting your turf and maintaining a virus-free environment for users.

The US Environmental Protection Agency lists several disinfectants that have been proven to be useful against Covid-19.  You can effectively disinfect your artificial indoor turf with ordinary soap or detergent featured on the EPA list of approved products. 

Based on the information from relevant health organizations, a mixture of 8 gallons of liquid detergent per 140 gallons of water effectively kills the infectious Covid-19 particles. 

We should also note that these solutions only address the infectious particles that exist on the turf at that moment.  They cannot prevent future exposure or limit the chances of the virus spreading again.  With proper cleaning practices, you can maintain a very safe indoor turf and protect your users from the coronavirus. 

Indoor Turf Disinfecting Best Practices 

Before cleaning your artificial grass turf, contact your turf provider for help on what products to use.  Some Covid-19 disinfectants can break down the glue that holds the fibers to the backing and damage the surface.  This can void your warranty.

If you also have an outdoor turf, you’ll be happy to hear that researchers found that prolonged exposure to UV light also degrades the coronavirus particles.  Artificial turfs can get incredibly hot during the summer months, and viruses can’t survive long on such a surface.

How to Minimize the Spread of Covid-19 in Your Facility

Proper artificial turf hygiene is an essential part of keeping student-athletes safe and healthy. Routinely disinfecting the indoor turf goes a long way in minimizing the potential spread of Covid-19.  With that being said, this is just one part of the bigger picture, as this virus spreads more from person to person than through contact with surfaces and objects.  With this in mind, it’s advisable to introduce certain rules and practices to minimize the chances of spreading the virus.

Steps to Take

The best way to minimize the spread of the virus is to educate all players, parents, and coaches on the importance of physical distancing, appropriate cleaning protocols, and other facility policies deemed necessary.

True, it’s not possible to maintain a physical distance in many sports.  In such cases, we recommend that you feature smaller participation sizes and create separate schedules for each group of students to reduce the virus’s chances of spreading within a larger group of student-athletes.

Lastly, keep in mind that sports facilities are still not allowed to reopen in some parts of the country.  Make sure to follow your local and state requirements to be certain of everything local legislators require from sports facilities regarding hygiene and user-safety during the pandemic.

The CDC and other health and public services are still actively learning about the virus, its methods of spreading, and how to fight against it.

Adapt to Covid-19 Updates and Keep your Turf Safe for Use

The coronavirus pandemic is an ever-changing situation, as continued research unveils new data and useful information on how to fight the virus and prevent it from spreading.  That said, one thing should never change.  User safety should always be the number one priority.

While there is no way to know what the future holds and how close the end of the pandemic is, it’s crucial to educate the public about the safety measures that can keep users safe when using artificial indoor turfs. 

It’s a challenging task, but you don’t have to tackle it alone.  If you have any other questions regarding this topic or need help keeping your artificial turf clean and safe, we urge you to contact us.  Please schedule a consultation through our quick online form. Or call our friendly customer representatives at (973) 801-7219.

rubber sports flooring weight rooms new jersey

Why Rubber Sports Flooring is the Superior Choice for New Jersey Weight Rooms

Rubber gym floors are ideal for many indoor sports.  Rubber sports flooring for weight rooms in New Jersey offer the perfect balance of performance, high moisture tolerance, and durability.  As a flooring solution, it can also find its way into multi-purpose facilities that accommodate various sporting and non-sporting events.

In this week’s blog, we want to highlight one environment where rubber sports floors excel — weight rooms.  Continue reading to learn why rubber sports flooring is becoming the prevalent choice for New Jersey weight rooms.

What Makes Rubber Sports Flooring for Weight Rooms in New Jersey a Great Option

Durable, resilient, and flexible, rubber flooring is the preferred option for many weight room owners and sports facility operators.  Here are some of the most significant reasons why rubber sports flooring is the superior choice for New Jersey weight rooms:

Supports Heavy Equipment

When it comes right down to which flooring material is best at supporting heavy equipment, rubber sports flooring comes out on top.  Hardwood flooring would quickly get damaged under heavy equipment.  Other materials, such as foam and plastic flooring, require demanding maintenance practices and can also easily indent under the pressure of heavy free weights dropping. 

In contrast to these flooring solutions, rubber sports flooring is built for maximum impact absorption without indenting.  Its characteristics can withstand heavy weight training while protecting both the athlete and the cement subfloor underneath.  Rubber flooring can hold several tons of weight without bending or ripping.

Slip-resistant

The last thing you want in your sports facility is for someone to slip and fall while performing a heavy-weighted power clean or squat.  Rubber sports flooring provides an excellent grip. 

It can greatly reduce the chance of athletes slipping and injuring themselves while lifting weights.  Higher quality rubber sports floors have a coefficient of friction that exceeds 80 percent, guaranteeing excellent slip resistance.

Excellent Sound Absorption

Rubber sports flooring is slip-resistant and durable.  It also reduces the vibration and noise from machines and free weights in the weight room.  Rubber flooring has excellent sound absorption capacity and significantly muffles ambient noise.  This makes it great for high-traffic and open areas where sound bounces off the walls all over the room.

Easy to Clean

With the ongoing pandemic, proper cleaning and disinfecting practices are more critical now than ever before.  When it comes to cleaning and maintaining a flooring surface, rubber sports flooring requires simple maintenance practices. 

Since rubber sports floors are water-resistant, disinfecting them is easy.  All you have to do is apply strong cleaners to kill viruses and bacteria.

Environmentally-friendly

The trend of switching to more environmentally-friendly solutions and using eco-friendly materials has slowly taken over the market during the past few decades.  It’s no secret that one of the bigger reasons why rubber sports flooring has become so popular is its ecological impact.

Since most rubber flooring products are made from recycled rubber, the amount of waste is significantly reduced.  Rubber is a natural material extracted from the sap of tropical rubber plants.  As a result, rubber flooring products are PVC-free and have a low VOC emissions rating.

Diverse Design Options

Rubber sports flooring solutions come in many varieties, allowing you to custom-fit the flooring to best suit your weight room.  There are several common thickness options of 1/4, 3/8, 5/8, and 3/4 inches.  But you can also request specialty thicknesses ranging up to 2.75 inches.

There are many different coverages and design options too.  The three primary choices you’ll have include:

  • Tiles — The ideal option for any weight room, no matter the size.  Tiles are incredibly convenient if you have an indoor weight room that’s irregularly shaped.
  • Rolls — Rubber rolls are the most cost-effective option of the three, offering an excellent value for money ratio.
  • Mats — A good choice for smaller gyms.  Rubber mats are generally thicker and sturdier than tiles and rolls. 

Easy to Install

Depending on which of the three options you decide to go with, the installation process will vary slightly.  Generally speaking, rubber sports flooring is easy to install. 

Rubber sports tiles are installed by interlocking with each other and don’t require any adhesives. So, you can install them quickly on your own, even if you’ve never done it before. 

Mats and rolls are seen as more permanent rubber flooring solutions since they’re a bit more challenging to install.

Contact us today to get a rubber sports floor for your New Jersey or Tri-State weight room.

At J&J Gym Floors, we install high-quality rubber sports flooring options that will protect your athletes’ performance and safety.  Our rubber sports floors will have a significant positive impact on your sports facility’s aesthetic appearance, too. 

We’ve worked with some of the biggest and most reputable teams and brands in the sports world.  Although we’re based in New Jersey, we also provide flooring services for most of NJ, NY, MD, PA, DE, and CT.

If you have any questions about rubber sports flooring for weight rooms in New Jersey, we’ll be glad to answer them and help you pick the most suitable solution for your sports facility.   Contact us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form, and we’ll get back to you promptly.

gym floor myths

The Top 10 Gym Floor Myths Debunked

There are many misconceptions about sports floors and their maintenance.  Some of these gym floor myths are, unfortunately, popular among gym owners and facility operators.  But believing these myths can cause more harm than good.  Your hardwood gym floor is a significant investment.  So, you’ll want to protect it as much as you can and make sure you get the most value out of it.

Getting Rid of Common Sports Facility Misconceptions

As sports flooring experts, we’re dedicated to debunking myths and misinformation to help our readers ensure maximum performance and longevity of their sports floors.  We’ll go over the top 10 gym floor myths regarding both hardwood and rubber sports floors on this page.

1. The AC can be off when nobody is using the gym.

Shutting down your HVAC system overnight or over the weekend may seem like a good idea to save a few bucks.  But it can have a detrimental effect on your hardwood gym floor.  According to the MFMA recommendations, you should always preserve a stable indoor environment.

This includes maintaining an indoor relative humidity between 35 percent and 50 percent and air temperatures between 55 degrees and 75 degrees year-round.  This will limit the facility’s atmospheric swings as the seasons’ change, reducing the hardwood floor’s contraction and expansion.

2. You can use an auto scrubber on the hardwood floor.

Using an auto scrubber might appear like a practical way of maintaining your hardwood floor. According to MFMA guidelines, you should never use an auto scrubber on your hardwood floor. It can cause a long list of problems, including:

  • Splintering
  • Excessive shrinkage and expansion
  • Cupping
  • Raised and uneven sides

Using an auto scrubber can also ruin the floor finish and paint.

3. You can use tape on your gym floor.

As a professional sports flooring company, we strongly advise against using any tape on your hardwood floor.  Using tape for temporary marking is also an impractical method.  We recommend using tempera paint instead.

Also, avoid using any type of stickers.  They can mess up the hardwood finish when removed. Stickers are also a safety hazard because they don’t offer the same friction as the playing surface around them. 

4. You can replace a patch to fit with the rest of your floor.

If your hardwood sports floor has become damaged in a small area, removing and replacing the entire floor isn’t a cost-effective solution.  In this case, most facility operators will decide to only replace the affected patch. 

But, if you opt for patch replacement, keep in mind that the new patch on the floor won’t match the rest of your gym floor — unless the entire surface is sanded, repainted, and refinished.

5. Screening and recoating is overrated.

Some facility owners believe that there’s no need to screen and recoat their hardwood gym floor every year.  While it’s true that not all gyms experience the same amount of foot traffic, screening and recoating is a critical part of proper hardwood maintenance. 

It will only take your contractor one day to screen and recoat your gym floor.  You’ll need to have it done every year. 

6. Rubber sports flooring is the best overall solution for gyms. 

Rubber gym floors can be used for various indoor and outdoor sports activities.  But rubber floors aren’t always the best option if your sports facility is mostly used for dance or similar activities.  This is because rubber gym floors are too adhesive and don’t allow much slippage. When paired with activities such as dance practice, it can lead to ankle and knee injuries.

7. Rubber sports floors are only good for weight rooms.

Many facility owners think that rubber gym floors are only good for weight rooms and aren’t suitable for multi-sports facilities.  While it’s true that rubber sports floors are the best choice for weight rooms, they’re still ideal for many different sports activities.

8. Rubber floors are 100 percent waterproof.

In every single one of our previous posts related to rubber floors, we highlighted this floor’s extreme water and moisture resistance capabilities.  Although rubber gym floors possess this feature, they’re still slightly porous. 

If soaked in water or power washed, these gym floors can allow water to slowly seep into the rubber and damage it.  For these reasons, avoid power washing your rubber gym floor and make sure to follow the recommended cleaning practices for rubber floors.

9. Rubber flooring will make your gym smell.

This gym floor myth is a bit tougher to bust, as there is some truth to it at first glance.  Since rubber flooring is mostly made from natural rubber or recycled tires, there’s no way to avoid it — it’s going to smell like rubber.  However, the smell will be the strongest right after installation and will slowly dissipate in the following days and weeks. 

10. It’s cheaper to maintain your floor yourself.

Sports floors, hardwood ones, in particular, require a complicated maintenance process that demands great precision and timing.  The maintenance quote you’ll get from your contractor may seem like a big number.  But it’s always best to leave such a difficult task to licensed and skilled professionals.

Gym Floor Myths Debunked: The Bottom Line

Maintaining or fixing the floor on your own can lead to even further damage and more costly repairs — especially if you’ve never done it before. 

At J&J Gym Floors, we’ve completed over 17,300 projects since 2003 and know how to provide an efficient and high-quality service.  We have the tools and knowledge to execute a service that assures the best results for your sports floor. 

Avoid undertaking such a serious project on your own.  Hire the best sports flooring company on the East Coast.  Our reputation is your guarantee.  Call (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online contact form to schedule a consultation or request a proposal. 

indoor turf cleaning and maintenance

Indoor Turf Cleaning and Maintenance: Keep Your Indoor Field Looking Great

Artificial indoor turfs are a perfect solution for facility operators looking for a climate-controlled and steadfast grass-like surface.  Indoor turfs require no sunlight or watering and can endure heavy foot traffic every day.  But, to get consistent performance year-round, it’s crucial to properly maintain the turf.  Luckily, this is relatively easy and straightforward when you know the correct indoor turf cleaning and maintenance techniques.

As the most trusted flooring company on the East Coast, we find that it is our responsibility to inform our readers on proper indoor turf cleaning and maintenance procedures.  You’ll find the best tips on how to keep your indoor field looking great year-round on this page.

Turf Cleaning

Indoor artificial turfs are much easier to maintain than natural grass turfs.  They don’t require strict maintenance requirements like hardwood floors.  You don’t have to worry about cleaning debris or picking up leaves and sticks scattered across the field.  But, you’ll still have to clean your turf periodically to protect its quality and longevity. 

Whether you rent your bubble to weekend recreationists or have an indoor turf as a part of your school or team facility, stains and smudges are inevitable.  Things like soda and coffee stains, chocolate, and ice cream marks happen almost every day.

Cleaning spills

When you notice a spill, it’s best to dab the surface with a paper towel to collect as much liquid as you can before it spreads to a larger area.  But, if the liquid has already found a way into the infill, a simple and effective way to clean a stain is to use detergent and cold water.

Just keep in mind not to overuse detergent, as it can create a “ring” in your turf.  Use just enough to soak the solids and rinse them out of the blades. 

It’s best to clean from the outside of the spill toward the center on the stain, to minimize the chance of creating a ring.  In line with this, it’s also essential to clean the spill without delay. Don’t let it sit for over 24 hours, as the longer you wait to clean it, the harder it will be to get rid of.

If you leave substances like lipstick, polish, paint, or oil-based solutions on the turf for an extended period, they’ll leave behind a stubborn stain that’s difficult to remove.  Use a paint remover before cleaning these types of spills with detergent and water. 

Removing deep-rooted substances from your indoor turf

Aside from stains and other problems that can affect your turf, many foreign substances can get ingrained between the fiber blades.  For instance, chewing gum often manages to settle between the blades and the infill.

If you’re having problems removing gum from your turf, the most efficient way to do it is to use a regular Freon aerosol spray. Simply spray it over the target surface, wait a few seconds for it to settle on top, and then scrape it from the turf.

Grass Grooming

How do you groom artificial grass?  When it comes to grooming artificial indoor turfs, this process doesn’t include mowing or trimming the grass.  Instead, it involves going over the turf with a power broom.

Artificial grass can endure much more traffic than natural grass.  But sometimes it requires an occasional power brooming to maintain its robust appearance and resemblance to natural grass.  The amount of times you’ll need to groom your turf depends on several different factors; how often the turf is used, and manufacturer recommendations will impact frequency.

It’s best to groom your indoor turf before the season starts.  This will give you more room to fine-tune the turf and prepare it for regular everyday use.  Besides the power broom, additional turf grooming equipment can include rotating tines and rakes.  These can be used for loosening and leveling the rubber infill.

Turf Disinfection

Unlike regular grass, artificial turfs cannot naturally absorb microbes.  For this reason, you should occasionally clean your turf with disinfectants to ensure that it’s germ-free.  This especially applies during extraordinary times, like during the coronavirus pandemic.  Properly disinfecting artificial turfs during COVID-19 is essential in protecting every player on the field.

With this in mind, artificial turfs are very resilient, so you can use commercial cleaners to give your turf a deep clean.  If you’re not comfortable using commercial cleaners, you can disinfect the turf with a mixture of bleach and water.  Disinfecting your turf is essential for health reasons. Disinfecting prevents germs from spreading and also protects against mildew, mold, and other potential health hazards.

Create a Maintenance Schedule and Make Time for Routine Inspections

With a little care and attention, artificial turfs can last up to two decades.  In order to ensure your turf lasts this long, it’s crucial to inspect it regularly.  By performing regular checks, you can maintain a top-quality turf and avoid costly and unnecessary expenses.

Similarly to natural grass, turfs can wear out if there are too many repetitive activities on a specific pitch area.  For example, if you’re regularly running training drills, make sure to switch up the areas in which these drills occur.  A well-thought-out schedule and training plan will help you avoid surface deterioration from excessive use.

Maintaining a High-Quality Indoor Turf with cleaning and maintenance routines

You can’t keep your turf completely clean all of the time. There are no sure-fire ways to guarantee a stain-free and sterile turf year-round.  Players sweat and often spit on the turf during the game.  Stains and spills will happen.  But, with these turf cleaning and maintenance tips we’ve shared, you’ll be much more successful in fighting these problems and protecting your investment.

Prompt and adequate maintenance is vital if you want a resilient and high-performing turf.  If you have any questions you need our turf experts to answer, let us know!  Contact us through our online form or give us a call at (973) 801-7219.

painting court lines

Painting Court Lines Adds Fun and Color to Playgrounds

When it comes to painting court lines, everything must be lined up correctly.  That’s the only way to ensure that the game is played as it’s intended.  A court must be painted precisely; otherwise, problems can occur during the games.

Even though painting outdoor court lines requires great skill and precision, it doesn’t mean this job should be stressful and tedious.  Painting outdoor basketball courts and playgrounds can be an enjoyable project that can add a lot of fun and color to the existing play area.  Here’s how!

What You Should Know About Painting Courts and Playgrounds

Much like painting and designing indoor gym floors, painting court lines and symbols on playgrounds requires great care, preparation, and careful application.  It doesn’t matter whether you’re painting a basketball, tennis, or pickleball court.  The first thing you should do is make sure everything is done to proper dimensions and measurements. 

Different surfaces require different preparation methods that you have to carefully follow when aiming for the best results.

Concrete Court Painting

If you have an existing concrete court pad, you might only need to repair it and apply a brushed finish.  In case you need to construct a new concrete court, it will take up to four weeks until the concrete is dry and usable.

When constructing a new concrete court, your contractor should also apply a brushed finish. The concrete surface needs to have a specific texture that will allow the paint to hold onto something when applied.  If your contractor makes the surface too smooth, the paint will start peeling away very early in its lifecycle.

Before applying court lines or logos, you must make sure that the surface is spotless.  More precisely, alkaline should be removed from the entire surface.  If you want to be extra careful, you can also insist on using an adhesion promoter to ensure the resurfacing paint adheres properly.  Next, your contractor will apply acrylic resurfacing paint.

Concrete courts require less paint than asphalt courts because concrete isn’t as porous as asphalt.  Even though you’ll use less paint overall, you should ideally aim for four coats of paint before laying down game lines.

Asphalt Court Painting

Just like concrete, your asphalt court might already have a pad or require a new one to be laid. If you have an existing pad that needs to be repaired and sealed, your contractor will set a necessary waiting time for it to cure before he paints new court lines. 

In case you need to lay a new asphalt pad, the process will take a bit longer.  The new asphalt pad will require time to cure.  Depending on the climate and weather conditions, this can take from two to four weeks.

Waiting for the asphalt to cure completely is a crucial part of the process, as all of the oils need to come out of it before any further work can be done.  If your contractor tries painting lines and logos before the mandatory waiting period is up, the paint won’t stick well to the surface.  The final result will lack both quality and durability.

After the asphalt court has cured, the contractor should smooth out the surface by applying acrylic resurfacing paint with a squeegee.  In some cases, your court might need two coats of resurfacing paint.  Once the resurfacing paint has been spread, color can be applied to your court or playground, often in just two coats. 

The color will need some time to dry.  Then, your contractor can use a professional taping machine to apply the lines. 

Court Resurfacing

Some courts may require detailed resurfacing before any lines or logos can be painted.  If you have an older court, it’s likely cracked or chipping in some places.  If your court’s surface has started to crumble, this will make it unsuitable for a paint job.

In some cases, chipping, cracking courts can be fixed and ready for paint with a few simple repairs.  But if it’s too far gone, you’ll have to replace the entire surface with a new layer of asphalt or concrete.  Whatever your situation, resurfacing a court before a new, detailed painting is always a good idea if you have the budget. 

Even if your court or playground hasn’t severely deteriorated, resurfacing it is a great long-term solution.  You will get the most life out of your court as possible, and you won’t have to perform any repairs for years.

Make the Right Choice

The sky’s the limit when it comes to customizing your sports court.  Whether you require playground painting or want an acrylic painting of tennis, pickleball, basketball courts, our experts will include you in every step of the process.  If quality and longevity are your main priorities, we will make sure your court or playground gets the best possible treatment!

As the premier sports flooring company on the East Coast, we service most of NJ, NY, CT, PA, DE & MD.  We use the latest and best-quality technology to create precise and durable court lines, as well as logos, lettering, and other symbols. 

Customize your court or playground with an eye-catching design with our quick and streamlined service!  Call (973) 801-7219 or contact us directly through our online form, and we’ll get back to you without delay!

protect hardwood gym floor

What Can You Do to Protect Your Hardwood Gym Floor from Damage?

The hardwood gym floor condition has a significant impact on your sports facility’s overall usability and performance.  As a natural material, hardwood flooring is quickly impacted by its environment and requires specific protection and maintenance standards to sustain its features in the long term.  In this post, we’ll cover the most effective actions you can take to protect your hardwood gym floor.

Have a Proper Daily Cleaning Plan

Hardwood is more susceptible to damage and deterioration from dust particles than other sports flooring solutions.  When athletes run and walk on the floor, any dust that has settled on the floor will scratch the surface.  This can cause the floor to age prematurely and increase the need for more frequent screening and recoating

If your HVAC system is old, your hardwood floor will have even higher cleaning requirements because of the extra dust that’s getting pumped through the system.

The best way to remove dust and dirt from your hardwood gym floor is to clean it with a dry mop.  You should do this every day, even if the floor hasn’t been used for a couple of days.  If your gym floor is used heavily every day, consider sweeping it at least a couple of times per day. 

If you already have a regular cleaning routine, you can quickly determine whether your cleaning plan is adequate or not.  If you notice a thick buildup of dust on other fixtures in your gym, you have to step up your cleaning game.

Hardwood gym floor cleaning: A common misconception

A common misconception is that you should clean the hardwood floor with a damp mop.  There are several reasons why this is a bad idea.  The biggest reason you should avoid cleaning your hardwood floor with a mop and bucket is that it significantly increases water damage risk.  If any water finds its way between the boards, the hardwood can become malformed and unusable.

Use a pH-Neutral Cleaner.

Regular dust mopping is essential in minimizing dust and debris on your hardwood floor.  But, to prevent a hardwood gym floor from becoming a safety issue, you’ll also have to occasionally clean it with a pH-neutral cleaner.  A pH-neutral solution is strong enough to get rid of all contaminants while not damaging the hardwood floor. 

Lightly saturate a microfiber cloth with a pH-neutral solution and wipe the hardwood floor to clean the surface from any spilled beverages, sweat, body oils, or other contaminants.

Also, consider disinfecting your gym floor regularly to prevent the spread of viruses.  Be sure to disinfect the floor with an EPA-approved disinfectant and clean the surface with a pH-neutral cleaner immediately after disinfecting.  Disinfectants can damage the boards if left on for too long.

Install Walk-off Mats at the Entrance of the Gym.

Installing walk-off mats is a very effective way of minimizing dust buildup on your hardwood gym floor. 

Walk-off mats have been found to directly contribute to overall indoor air quality improvement and minimize bacteria and debris.  For best results, you should install walk-off mats at the entryway, between the gym floor and the door.

Over time, the walk-off mats will become filled with dust and debris, becoming an additional source of dirt finding its way onto the hardwood.  If you decide to install walk-off mats, vacuum them regularly so they’ll trap dust effectively. 

Monitor Changing Floor Conditions

Prevention is the most practical solution for the protection of your hardwood gym floor.  One of the best things you can do is monitor your hardwood gym floor regularly and keep an eye out for any early floor damage signs.  Being cautious and observant can go a long way to resolving problems in their early stages.

Rapidly changing weather conditions are a common threat to gym floors every year.  From insulating water pipes to protect them from freezing to keeping your gymnasium warm inside during cold winter nights, there are many things you can do to ensure stable conditions in your gym. 

During humid or wet weather, inspect the floor for any tightening or shrinkage.  Also, don’t shut down the AC system in your facility for a prolonged period.  Ensure that the indoor air humidity and temperature levels don’t fluctuate too much from day-to-day to prevent moisture buildup.

Get Hardwood Gym Floor Covers

If you want to protect your hardwood gym floors the best you can, consider purchasing hardwood floor covers.  

Gym floor cover systems are a must if your gymnasium also serves as a multi-purpose room for various events and manifestations.  Whenever your gym isn’t used for a sports event, you should shield it with floor covers.

Floor covers will protect the valuable hardwood floor from wear-and-tear caused by tables, chairs, and shoes. 

At J&J Gym Floors, we offer Eco Tile Gym Floor Covers that guarantee high-performance features and are environmentally-friendly.

You don’t have to compromise on anything.  Our eco tiles are durable, tear-resistant, and easy to clean.  They’re also lightweight and easy to store.  You can quickly lay them down or pick them up whenever the situation calls for it.

If you’re looking for the best quality hardwood gym floor protection, our Eco Tiles are an excellent choice for your sports facility.  Call us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form, and we’ll get back to you right away!

basketball court cleaner

Basketball Court Cleaner: Everything You Need to Know (But Didn’t Think to Ask)

A hardwood gym floor is a significant investment and a focal point of any sports facility.  With this in mind, you should do whatever you can to keep it in top condition for as long as possible. But, if you’re not working with a commercial cleaning company, creating a continual cleaning plan for your basketball court can be tough.  In this post, we’ll cover everything you need to know about cleaning your hardwood basketball court. 

Finding the Right Balance

Dust and debris tend to settle overnight.  So, you don’t want to forget to clean your court in the evening.  Athletes who arrive in the morning to use the gym will be rubbing settled debris into the hardwood as they jump and run throughout the court.

Keep your hardwood gym floor safe from scratches and wear.  Clean every morning before you open the facility.  If you operate a high-traffic facility, consider mopping twice a day, once before you open the doors and again in the evening. 

More importantly, cleaning your court every day will create a safer environment for your athletes.  Regular cleaning will reduce the occurrence of dust-induced allergies and respiratory problems in athletes.

People make a common mistake when cleaning because they use the same mop to clean the hallway and the gym floor.  You should avoid doing so, as it can result in cross-contamination and often lead to even faster deterioration of the hardwood floor.  Mopping the gym floor with the same water you used to clean other rooms in your facility is a bad idea.

The chemicals used to clean other surfaces are often too strong for hardwood.  On top of this, cleaning this way will leave the gym floor looking cloudy and damaged because you’ll leave a lot of dirt and residue behind.

Water and Hardwood Basketball Floors: A Good Combination?

Water and hardwood floors generally don’t mix.  But when it comes to cleaning, sometimes you have to use water to get rid of more persistent residues.  So, don’t be afraid to wet the floor. Sometimes, this is the only way to remove all of the bacteria from the court’s surface.

Daily scrubbing and sweeping go a long way in minimizing dirt and debris that can scratch the floor.  But occasionally, you’ll also have to use water or a cleaning solution to give the floor a more thorough cleaning.

Basketball court cleaner Tools to Use

Using the two quintessential janitorial tools — the mop and bucket — isn’t the best way to go about cleaning a hardwood basketball court floor.  You can cause water damage and make it unusable and unsafe.

Changes in the hardwood’s moisture content can lead to much bigger problems with your floor, such as buckling and cupping, and require costly repairs or even a complete replacement.

Instead of cleaning the court with a mop and bucket, consider using an automatic scrubber.  It’s a much more efficient tool for cleaning the gym, as you can wash and dry the entire court within 15 minutes.

Disinfecting Against Coronavirus

When the pandemic started at the beginning of this year, we published a detailed guide on disinfecting your hardwood floor against the Coronavirus.  Although the global situation has changed since the outbreak and the public now knows much more about the virus than when we published the guide, the cleaning and disinfecting practices we shared still apply today.

Keeping high-traffic areas in your gym clean and disinfected is a must.  The most important thing you need to do is use an EPA-approved disinfectant, proven effective in eliminating Covid-19 particles from surfaces. 

Be careful when choosing the cleaning solution.  Make sure to pick a mild cleaner that won’t damage your hardwood sports floor.

What’s the Best Floor Cleaner for a Basketball Court?

Choosing the best floor cleaner for your court shouldn’t be an overwhelming task.  You don’t need a massive warehouse filled with cleaning solutions just for your hardwood gym floor.  If you’re properly informed, cleaning your sports floor is relatively simple.  It’s so simple that any pH-neutral cleaner can do this task.  Just keep in mind that proper maintenance isn’t only about keeping your floor clean and looking good. 

A well-maintained floor will last longer and do a better job of keeping your athletes safe and free from any injuries.  Hopefully, the tips we shared with you on this page have helped you develop a more efficient hardwood floor maintenance routine and choose the best basketball court cleaning solution for your facility.

Additional Hardwood Basketball Court Care

Even with regular and proper maintenance, your floor won’t be immune to scratches and scuffs. You should employ other maintenance practices such as sanding and refinishing and screening and recoating as per the instructions of your flooring expert. 

If you have any questions or wish to schedule a consultation with our experienced flooring professionals, reach out to us today.  Call (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form, and we’ll get back to you without delay.

gym floor finishes

Oil-Based and Water-Based Gym Floor Finishes: A Guide

Hardwood sports flooring is the most popular commercial flooring solution for sports facilities. With proper care and maintenance practices, a hardwood gym floor will last decades.  For optimum performance and longevity, the floor should be recoated annually. 

There are two types of floor coatings you can use when recoating your hardwood floor — oil-based or water-based sealants.  In this gym floor finishes guide, we’ll go over the basic FAQs regarding this topic and help you decide which option is best for your facility.  

Water-Based vs. Oil-Based Gym Floor Finish

The Maple Floors Manufacturers Association (MFMA) publishes specifications that all products provide the highest protection standards and visual appearance for sports floors.  Both water-based and oil-based gym floor products can be used, as long as they adhere to the MFMA specifications and standards for finishers and sealers.

Let’s go over the most essential aspects of oil-based and water-based finishes, and the differences between the two.

Oil-based products require fewer coats but take longer to cure.

Oil-based floor finishes last longer than water-based products.  But with oil-based finishes, you’ll have to wait anywhere from 12 to 24 hours in between coats.  In total, the entire recoating process can take quite some time, as the final cure can take up to a full month.  So, if you plan on using an oil-based finish, it’s best to recoat your floor in the off-season or during summer vacation.

Water-based finishes cure faster but require more coats for durability.

When applying a water-based finish to your hardwood floor, you’ll have to use several coats to fully protect the floor.  Often, this includes going over the entire floor at least four or five times. You’ll need to wait about two or three hours in between each coat. 

Also, avoid applying more than two coats per day.  This will allow you to achieve the most thorough cure.  In total, it usually takes around a week for a water-based finish to cure.  This is still much less cure time compared to what you can expect with oil-based products.

Oil-based floor finishes are a traditional solution.

Applying an oil-based finish on your hardwood floor will give it a traditional appearance most players and spectators are familiar with.  The truth is that oil-based floor products are still the industry standard and have been for decades.  They provide the hardwood gym floor with its signature and recognizable amber tint, which some people prefer.

Using an oil-based finish will allow you to add to the maple wood grain’s richness and overall depth.  If you want your hardwood floor to have stronger and darker undertones, oil-based products are the best option. 

But what about gym floor finishes and branding?

Due to its distinct look, an amber tint oil-based product might not fit the specific logo colors you have in mind for your facility.  So, it’s something to consider. 

Water-based products are quickly gaining popularity on the market.  If you would rather preserve your hardwood floor’s original color, a water-based product is the better option. Water-based gym floor finishes stay mostly transparent, allowing the natural color of the maple to shine through.  This is something to keep in mind if you plan on adding new lines, graphics, or logos to your hardwood gym floor. 

Water-based floor finishes are more eco-friendly.

Going with a water-based finish is a much better solution if you’re looking for a more eco-friendly option.  Water-based products emit fewer volatile organic compounds or VOCs.  The amount of VOCs in a product is vital to consider.  They can impact the health of the people who use the hardwood floor, especially younger players. 

Water-based coatings are far gentler on the environment than oil-based finishes.  Since today’s consumers are increasingly turning to environmentally-friendly options, there are more water-based products to choose from than ever before. 

Additionally, water-based products have a longer shelf life than their oil-based counterparts, so you won’t have to throw away what you don’t use. 

Which gym floor finishing product costs more?

Water-based products cost significantly more than oil-based finishes.  For those recoating on a budget, a water-based gym floor finish might not be in the cards. 

Oil-based floor finishes for gyms last longer.

Durability is another factor that should rank high on your list.  At J&J Gym floors, we often stress the importance of proper maintenance practices for hardwood floors, but even these can only go so far. 

The bottom line is, water-based products simply aren’t as durable as oil-based finishes.  A hardwood floor coated with an oil-based product doesn’t have to be recoated as frequently as one overlaid with a water-based product.

Gym Floor Finishes Guide: Which Coating is Best for Your Facility?

With the information we’ve provided on this page, you’ll be able to make an educated decision for the type of finish you want for your hardwood sports floor.  Hopefully, this page has helped you choose the coating you think is best for your brand, athletes, and budget. 

Both floor finish solutions offer adequate protection and have their own unique pros and cons. The biggest difference between the two is in the visual appearance.  Still, both options present a viable coating solution for any hardwood sports floor.  That being said, whichever option you decide to go with, the recoating process should be left to flooring professionals

A licensed flooring contractor is best equipped to apply these solutions safely.  A professionally-applied gym floor finish will allow you to get the most out of whichever product you choose — longevity, durability, and appearance.

Contact us today to learn more about our professional recoating services.  

If you have any questions on gym floor finishes and the recoating process, contact our friendly flooring experts.  We’ll be happy to provide you with the best finishing solution for your hardwood sports floor.  Call us at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form, and we’ll get back to you right away.

wood gym floor care screening and recoating

Best Way to Care for a Wood Gym Floor: Screening and Recoating

With proper care and maintenance practices, hardwood gym floors can last up to 50 years. When it comes to increasing the lifespan of your hardwood sports floor, screening and recoating is the most effective course of action.

Screening and recoating is essential for preserving and maintaining the floor and keeping it safe for athletes’ use.  So, what does this process include?  How long does it last?  How often should you screen and recoat your gym floor?  Read this page and learn everything you need to know.

What is screening and recoating for wood gym floor care?

Screening and recoating can save you a lot of time and money over the lifetime of your hardwood sports floor.  Hardwood floor screening is a light sanding process that involves using a screen disk on a buffer.  After screening and cleaning, the floor is recoated using a finishing agent that seals the wood.  In most cases, a gym floor contractor will use polyurethane to seal the hardwood during recoating. 

Over time, the friction of daily sports activities will slowly wear away at this protective plastic coat.  As its main job is to protect the hardwood below, the polyurethane layer gets thinner and more scratched each day.

If more than a year or two passes, the protective layer will deteriorate too much and expose bare wood to heavy foot traffic. 

You should avoid this at all costs, as it will speed up the floor’s deterioration and require sanding and refinishing before the planned period.  This is what makes screening and recoating different from other floor maintenance practices.  Unlike many other hardwood care activities, this one is preventative.

How often should you screen and recoat a hardwood gym floor?

Regularly scheduling screening and recoating helps protect both the gym floor and the athletes that use it day in and day out.  We recommend that you screen and recoat your hardwood gym floor once a year.  That said, if your sports floor sees a lot of daily traffic, you should consider screening and recoating bi-annually.

Screening and recoating also extend the period before your gym floor requires sanding and refinishing.  Sanding and refinishing is a much more in-depth process than screening and recoating.  It involves more time and labor to complete and also costs more.  With a proper annual or bi-annual screening and recoating plan, your hardwood floor will only require sanding and refinishing every 10 to 15 years.

Why You Should Screen and Recoat Your Gym Floor

There are many reasons to screen and recoat your gym floor.  The most notable ones include:

  • Removal of Scuffs and Marks — Wood gym floor screening and recoating revitalizes and restores shine to your hardwood sports floor.  It removes scuffs and marks from the surface and refreshes your floor’s visual appearance.
  • Improved Paint and Flooring Protection — Not only does screening and recoating remove any imperfections from your hardwood floor, but it also adds protective polyurethane layers that preserve the flooring and paint from wear and tear.
  • Increased Floor Traction — Screening and recoating removes any oily film buildup from your floor and improves traction.  If you’re hearing a lot of squeaking on your gym floor, it means that your users are getting the right amount of traction when running up and down the court.  Proper traction is crucial for player safety, as it protects them from slipping and falling during fast-paced activities.

How long does the screening and recoating process take?

All of the recoating solutions that we use are high-quality and MFMA-approved.  For screening and recoating, you don’t need to empty the entire facility and face scheduling problems.  Our experienced gym flooring contractors can complete the whole process within a couple of days. Even if you run a busy facility with a packed schedule, screening and recoating won’t drastically impact your business and scheduling logistics.  But different recoating solutions come with different curing times. 

Some solutions need only 24 to 48 hours to cure, while others might take up to 14 days.  With this in mind, it’s vital to pick a solution that won’t have a detrimental impact on your demanding schedule.  Using a freshly renovated gym floor before it fully cures can mar the screening and recoating quality.

At J&J Gym Floors, we are always ready to work with our clients around their schedule.  In most cases, we complete the entire process over one weekend.  If you have a busy weekly schedule for your facility, our contractors can come in on Friday night and be out by Sunday afternoon. Come Monday, and you’ll be able to go back to your regular schedule.

The Best Daily Maintenance Plan for Hardwood Gym Floors

Screening and recoating, as well as sanding and refinishing, are all great ways to prolong the lifespan of your gym floor.  It’s also essential to have a proper daily maintenance plan to reduce the negative impact of regular daily activities and other factors that could cause the gym floor to fail.

The best way to maintain your gym floor is to sweep it with a dust mop daily to keep it free from dust and grit, which can scratch and damage the surface. 

When disinfecting, only use approved pH-neutral cleaning solutions and make sure to keep water off of the floor surface.

Ensuring your hardwood gym floor is properly maintained will make it look good and significantly contribute to its performance.  Timely screening and recoating is the key to a beautiful sports floor.

Does your floor need a screening and recoating service?  Not sure whether your hardwood floor needs more extensive mending?  Call us at (973) 801-7219.  Or contact us online to learn more about how we can help bring you hardwood gym floor back to top condition.

gym floor refinishing

Everything You Need to Know About Gym Floor Refinishing: A Guide

Your hardwood gym floor is one of the most valuable parts of your sports facility.  A well-maintained gym floor provides a safe and stable sports surface.  Students and athletes can practice and develop their skills to reach their full potential.

Daily cleaning and proper maintenance routines are critical to a well-performing sports floor.  But occasionally, your floor will require a more thorough treatment.

In this detailed guide, we want to shed light on a subject that’s not often discussed when it comes to gym floor maintenance.  With that in mind, here is everything you need to know about gym floor refinishing.

How long does it take to refinish a gym floor?

If you’re working with an experienced professional flooring contractor, the entire project can be completed over a short school break, taking no more than two weeks.  Your contractor will need roughly a week to sand, paint, and apply finish to your hardwood gym floor.  Once the refinishing is completed, it will take another week for the finish to cure to support on-court activities.

What happens during the gym floor refinishing process?

This gym floor refinishing process involves sanding down the entire court to the bare wood. After this, the contractor can single out any damaged boards that need to be replaced before proceeding with the next step. 

If there are no hardwood floorboards that need replacing, the flooring expert will remove scratches and repair any cracks between the boards.  Then, the floor is refinished with a sanding machine.  Once this is completed, an MFMA-approved sealer is applied.

The floor is screened between each coat. After applying the seal and finish, the contractor will paint the lines and logos as per your request.  Once the paint dries, the floor is tacked with a rag.  Finally, your contractor will again apply two coats of finish to add a layer of protection to the paint and leave it to dry.

When can you start using the floor again?

The floor shouldn’t be used until it’s completely dry, as any dirt and debris that may get on it before curing could scratch the finish.  During the drying period, the indoor temperature and air humidity should be maintained at the recommended standards to facilitate proper drying and curing.

How often should gym floors be refinished?

Unlike screening and recoating, which should be done every year as a preventative measure, gym floor refinishing is a more complex project completed every five to 10 years. 

Meticulously maintaining the gym and keeping it in pristine condition day in and day out will give you a more extended period between refinishing jobs.  How often you should sand and refinish your floors also depends on how frequently it’s used throughout the years.

How much does gym floor refinishing cost?

The average price for a full sanding and refinishing service is around $3 per sq. ft.  This includes all materials, labor, logos, and game lines, and clean up fees after the project is finished.

Keep in mind, this is just a ballpark price and that the costs can vary from contractor to contractor.  Additionally, the exact price for your refinishing project will also depend on several significant factors, such as:

  • The square footage 
  • The condition of your gym floor 
  • If repairs and replacement boards are needed
  • Where your facility is located
  • If painting, staining, or logos are needed
  • Varying labor costs 

 

Expert Tips for Basketball Court Floor Refinishing

Here are a few useful tips to keep in mind to make the gym floor refinishing process go smoothly:

  1. Prepare the Area — Ensure adequate ventilation and watch out for fluctuations in temperature and indoor humidity.  Have all of the materials and tools in one set location so that the contractors can work efficiently.  Also, block access points to prevent people from walking on the freshly laid and painted hardwood floor.
  2. Mind the Current Weather — Schedule your project to prevent gymnasium refinishing at a time when outdoor temperatures are too high or low.
  3. Hire a Flooring Contractor You Can Trust Interview and research gym floor refinishing contractors before hiring.  Get price estimates from multiple companies.  Compare their reputation and previous projects to help you choose the best flooring contractor for your facility. 

Contact Us Today for a Gym Floor Refinishing Consultation

Refinishing your hardwood gym floor will bring back its glow and make it look as good as new. More importantly, it will extend its life and ensure optimum performance and athlete protection. 

If you’re planning a gym floor sanding and refinishing project, contact us today.  Our professional flooring contractors are here to answer all of your questions and make sure you get the best possible service!

Call us at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our quick online form to schedule a consultation or request a proposal.

indoor turf buying guide

Your Indoor Turf Buying Guide from J&J Gym Floors

Indoors sports turfs are user-friendly, easy to maintain, and very durable.  The artificial indoor grass not only looks great, but it also allows for high-performance day-in and day-out.  There are several different types of synthetic indoor turfs, each with different characteristics and benefits.  And it’s essential to pick the right artificial flooring for your needs.

If you’re considering purchasing artificial indoor turf for your facility, you’ve come to the right place.  Read J&J Gym Floors indoor turf buying guide to find out everything you need to pick the best indoor turf for you.

Benefits of Artificial Indoor Turf

Artificial indoor turfs are incredibly durable and high-performing.  These sports turfs offer many benefits:

  • User safety — Regardless of whether you run a school or a professional training center, your athletes’ safety should always be a top priority.  Artificial indoor turfs are made from recycled rubber.  They naturally have a soft surface with a little bit of bounce.  What’s more, since the surface is abrasive, it provides the necessary traction for players to make quick movements without injuring their joints or muscles.
  • Durability — Indoor sports turfs can endure heavy use and constant wear and tear without losing their performance characteristics.  This allows the turf to withstand heavy use and high-intensity workouts.
  • Versatility Artificial sports turfs are an excellent choice for a wide variety of sports.  If you have an indoor facility, the turf can accommodate football, indoor soccer, baseball, and many other activities.  Because it is very resilient and shock-absorbent, it also supports workout activities such as CrossFit and weightlifting.  
  • Visually appealing — Synthetic grass turf not only offers optimal performance, but it also looks great — all the time.  Having a fresh green surface in your indoor arena is very aesthetically appealing.  Plus, it offers you another way to brand your sports facility. You can customize the turf’s appearance in many different ways.

Types of Turf Flooring

There are two main types of turf you can have installed – turf tiles and turf rollsTurf tiles are interlocking tiles that can cover any area of your indoor facility and are a perfect choice for oddly shaped spaces.  They’re incredibly durable and can endure heavy traffic without deteriorating.

On the other hand, turf rolls are ideal for high-intensity workouts such as body-weight exercises and running.  Your choice should depend on two factors – the types of activities that will take place in your gym and the layout of your facility.

How are indoor turfs installed?

The indoor turf installation process isn’t complicated.  But it should be carried out with maximum precision — especially for large high-traffic areas such as school gyms or commercial facilities. A professional indoor turf installer will ensure that everything is installed correctly and with a solid foundation.  There are three steps to the installation process:

Base Preparation

Before the installation can begin, the contractor will make sure the subfloor is completely level, dry, and clean.  A quality subfloor base provides a strong platform with adequate drainage for the turf.  The subfloor must be well-engineered and stable enough to support a durable and long-lasting turf. 

It’s optional, but an extra layer can be placed between the turf and the base to increase users’ safety and comfort.  If you’re starting from scratch and have to construct a new base, make sure to pick an experienced contractor for this project.  The base must be built with great care and attention.

Turf Installation

After the contractor has prepared the base, they’ll proceed with the installation of the turf.  The installation process will vary depending on whether you opted for turf tiles or turf rolls. 

Turf rolls are installed using glue and double-sided tape.  Then, the rolls are carefully seamed together to ensure the best performance and endurance.  Turf tiles are much more straightforward to install.  They just snap together like puzzle pieces.

Infilling the Turf

To finish off the installation, contractors use a power broom to work the infill in-between the grass blades evenly.  We recommend two pounds of infill per square foot for the best performance of the sports turf, with no less than an inch and a half of infill per square foot.  

How to Maintain an Indoor Turf

Proper maintenance is critical when it comes to extending the life of any sports floor, turfs included.  Luckily, the upkeep of indoor sports turfs is straightforward.  Regular maintenance includes brushing to redistribute the turf infill.  We also recommend users vacuum daily to remove any debris off the surface. 

If there are any stains on the grass, you can easily clean them with a solution of warm water and mild detergent.  Alternatively, you could use an equal mix of water and vinegar.   

Pick the Best Flooring Contractor for Your Project

If you’re looking to buy artificial indoor sports turf, it’s essential to understand what type of turf your facility needs in order to make an informed decision.  With that in mind, if you have any questions regarding your project, don’t hesitate to ask your flooring contractor

If you have any questions that weren’t answered on this page, please contact us here at J&J Gym Floors.  Our experts are happy to provide you with advice applicable to your particular project.  They will ensure you get the best and most suitable indoor turf for your facility, which they’ll install safely and efficiently.  Call us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form, and we’ll get back to you asap!

why rubber sports flooring

Rubber Sports Flooring: Why You Need It

In the age of modern sports flooring materials, requirements for flooring solutions have never been higher.  A high-grade sports flooring material should be resilient, sturdy, and safe to use.  It should also offer optimum performance with just the perfect amount of surface traction, shock absorption, and stability for multi-sports use. So why choose rubber sports flooring?

Rubber sports flooring is the only flooring material that meets all of these requirements.  It also provides several other benefits that can’t be matched by other sports flooring solutions.  Keep reading to find out why you should install rubber sports flooring in your gym or sports center.

What types of sports is rubber flooring suitable for?

Rubber sports flooring is widely regarded as one of the best surfaces for athletic flooring.  It’s suitable for many different types of indoor and outdoor sports, including:

  • Aerobics — Most aerobic routines require explosive and fast movement, which often creates a hard impact upon contact with the floor.  So, aerobic studios must be equipped with flooring material that provides adequate shock-absorption and stability.  The floor must also have just enough cushioning to help gym users stay injury-free.  Rubber flooring is the only flooring material that provides optimum results in terms of all of these factors.
  • Running — Due to its durability, rubber flooring is resilient even against running spikes and can endure heavy foot traffic.  This means that it’s an ideal choice for both indoor and outdoor jogging tracks.
  • Weight training — If your sports facility has a weight room, rubber flooring is the best option to install in it.  The material’s unique characteristics — durability, uniformity of surface, and density —are ideal weightlifting platforms.  Rubber flooring provides stable and comfortable support for efficient weight training exercises.  
  • Fitness Exercises — Rubber flooring is a popular choice for fitness centers.  It’s durable enough to offer optimal performance and provides enough grip to prevent injuries.  Rubber flooring is highly resistant to traction and laceration, making it an excellent choice for any fitness application.

Aside from the above, rubber sports flooring is also a perfect choice for multi-sports facilities. Due to its characteristics, rubber flooring can endure various intense sports activities — basketball, handball, volleyball, and indoor soccer.  If you’re looking for a general sports flooring that can support many different activities, rubber sports flooring is the ideal solution.

Advantages of Rubber Sports Flooring

Rubber sports flooring comes with a long list of advantages.  Let’s break them down.

High Performance

Rubber flooring is an exceptional flooring material.  It’s firm enough to provide a stable surface for athletes to run on but still soft to the touch.  Since it’s uniform, it offers dimensional stability, good ball rebound, and force reduction. 

Rubber flooring clears all of the industry standards for slip resistance, traction, and rotation.  It also allows for superior shock-absorption and provides excellent user protection.

Great Customizability

Rubber flooring offers excellent versatility and customizability and comes in many formats.  It can be precisely molded and formed to fit any configuration and facility.  You can pick from a variety of patterns and colors to make sure that the floor perfectly complements the rest of your sports facility.  

Moreover, unlike hardwood sports flooring, custom lines, logos, and symbols are built directly into the rubber.  This makes them more resilient and durable.

Easy to Install

Rubber flooring is commonly available in tiles, designed for straightforward and simple installation.  If you’re not looking to customize your floor, you can find rubber tiles in an interlocking format or square edge finish (for glue down setup).  The former type doesn’t require any adhesives.  So, you can install the tiles yourself by connecting and clicking pieces together.

Easy to Maintain

Rubber sports flooring is not only easy to install, but it is also much easier to maintain than other sports flooring materials.  It is water-resistant, as well as mildew and mold resistant.  All you need to do to keep your rubber floor in excellent condition is clean it with a damp mop regularly.

Durable and Resistant

Rubber flooring’s resilience and high density, along with its water and chemical resistance, make it a very tough and long-lasting material.  Depending on the rubber material’s thickness, it can handle several thousand pounds of sports equipment without scuffing, scratching, or tearing.  Its cushioning features also mean that any floor underneath it and the equipment will be protected from damage.

Environmentally Friendly

Rubber sports flooring ranks very highly in terms of high-quality, green flooring options.  Most rubber flooring solutions are made from recycled rubber and naturally renewable materials. 

According to the US Environmental Protection Agency research, recycled rubber products don’t present any potential health concerns and are completely safe.  Rubber floors are certified for indoor quality assurance and are free from any harmful PVC components.

Pick the Right Flooring for Your Facility

Rubber flooring is the most versatile sports flooring solution and offers many benefits over other sports flooring materials.  However, not all rubber floors are the same. 

Depending on the intention of your sports facility’s use, the thickness and durability requirements of your rubber floor can differ significantly.  That’s why you should know the purpose of your floor before having it installed.  It’s always best to reach out to a specialist and schedule a consultation with this in mind. 

Also, make sure to research your flooring contractor before hiring them.  Professional and skilled installation is required to ensure the best possible results of your new rubber sports flooring.  It will guarantee optimum performance and prolong the floor’s life.

At J&J Gym Floors, we can help you choose a rubber sports floor that best suits your needs. We can install sports floors in NJ, NY, CT, PA, DE & MD. 

Call us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our short online form to schedule a consultation or request a proposal.

school gym flooring

Choosing the Right School Gym Flooring: Factors and Considerations

The gymnasium is the heart of every school.  No two schools have the same sports gym flooring.  Depending on their size and location, school districts can have drastically different budgets and have different needs.  To make an educated decision and choose the right gym flooring, you first need to determine what you need.  You need to understand how your facility will be used and what your priorities are.  Continue reading to learn the crucial factors and considerations you should consider when choosing new school gym flooring.

Why Most Schools Choose Hardwood Floors

There’s a good reason why both the coaches and players prefer hardwood floors.  They offer an unmatched level of quality and performance suitable for high schoolers and professional athletes.  Hardwood flooring systems provide the best attributes for vertical deformation, shock absorption, area indentation, and ball rebound.

As a consistent and uniform surface, hardwood flooring not only ensures better performance but also offers enhanced safety features.  It reduces excessive vibration upon impact.  This makes it easier on the user’s joints and minimizes the chance of player injury.  Students’ parents will be able to relax as their children move up and down the court without fear of injuries.

Hardwood flooring must adhere to specific standards, the most significant of which are the ASTM F2772 Specifications and Standards.  These regulations are worth reading through if you’re choosing a new floor.  They will help you better understand hardwood floors’ athletic properties, especially those used in multi-purpose indoor sports flooring systems.

With all of this in mind, hardwood floors come with one downside.  Installing a hardwood floor is more expensive than installing a synthetic one.  Aside from the substantial initial investment, many schools also don’t have the budget for additional maintenance services, such as sanding and refinishing every few years.  But, if your school has the budget to invest in a hardwood maple floor, it’s the best option to go with.  

Key Factors to Address

The hardwood flooring is an essential part of your sports facility.  By investing in a quality hardwood, you’re also investing in your students and athletes.  When choosing the right athletic flooring for your facility, there are a few important questions to address.  Below are some of the most significant factors you should consider when choosing your next school gym flooring. 

Ease of Maintenance

Proper maintenance is a crucial, and often overlooked factor that plays a significant role in your floor’s performance and durability.  When properly maintained, maple hardwood floors can last over half a century.  In line with this, when installing a new floor, you should create a detailed gym floor maintenance plan that you can stick to.

This includes regular cleaning with manufacturer-recommended products and adequate protection for when the floor isn’t used.  Additionally, you should also screen and recoat the floor annually to remove scuffs and provide added protection to the floor.  Before selecting a floor, you should have set plans for each of these maintenance requirements.

Purpose of Use

The material you choose and what the floor will be used for will impact its longevity.  If your gymnasium is used for multi-sport activities, you should choose a flooring type that can offer great all-around performance. 

Aside from its use in sports activities, the gymnasium also serves many other purposes. It’s used as an auditorium, study hall, assembly hall, and for hosting banquets, school dances, and many other occasions. For this reason, you should also consider investing in a floor cover system to protect the hardwood.  Gym covers can come in the form of tarps and carpet tiles, both of which are easy to apply and remove.  

Cost of Installation

For most schools, the budget presents a crucial factor during the decision making process.  It’s often tough to determine a ballpark price for the cost of a new gym floor.  The price will vary based on the type of timber you select, your floor’s design, and many other factors.  It’s essential to keep in mind that the cost of maple hardwood floors can differ depending on where you live.  The cost of a new gym floor will also depend on the required preparation, whether you’re installing a new floor from the ground up, or replacing an existing hardwood floor.

What to Avoid When Choosing School Gym Flooring

We’ve gone over the most significant things you should consider when picking school gym flooring.  But, it’s also important to be aware of the things you shouldn’t do.  Here are some mistakes you should avoid when choosing a new sports floor:

  • Not defining court line priorities
  • Using masking tape to mark lines on the court
  • Failing to create a maintenance plan for your facility

Ensure Long-term Quality and Performance

Investing in a new gym floor is a big decision and requires preparation and research to get the best results.  But choosing the right school gym flooring for your facility doesn’t have to be overwhelming.  Finding and working with a sports flooring company you can trust will make the process easier. 

We can provide you with any information you’re looking for and help you make the right decision for your facility.  Know what you’re purchasing and ensure you get the best value for your investment.  Give us a call today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our quick online contact form.  Our knowledgeable staff will be happy to answer your questions!

restoring water damaged gym floor

The Ins and Outs of Restoring a Water Damaged Gym Floor

Water can significantly damage the structural integrity and functionality of a hardwood gym floor. A damaged gym can’t offer the same levels of comfort and protection players are used to.  Not to mention that such a floor becomes distorted and loses its polished, smooth look.  

A water-damaged gym floor becomes impractical, and in some cases, completely unusable.  On this page, we’ll get into the nitty-gritty of restoring a water damaged gym floor.

What Causes Gym Floor Water Damage?

High indoor relative humidity, improper maintenance techniques such as wet mopping, and disasters like burst pipes and floods can lead to a damaged gym floor in your sports facility. 

When disaster strikes, it’s important to immediately clean up spills and water from your gym floor.  A quick fix will prevent water from seeping down in between the boards and destroying your floor entirely.

Buckling, cupping, and crowning from water damage

When hardwood floorboards absorb and then release moisture, they contract and expand. Excessive moisture leads to two common issues — cupping and crowning.  

Cupping is when the edges are forced to expand upward.  Crowning causes the floorboard to expand in the center due to the imbalance in moisture content.  Once hardwood expands in such a way, it cannot return to its original position.

In extreme cases and prolonged water exposure, your hardwood floorboards can even buckle. Buckling occurs when the boards pull up from the subfloor for several inches or more.  This makes the hardwood floor unusable and requires a gym floor replacement.

Within several minutes, water can leak between the boards and spread all over an area under your hardwood floor.  Suppose the water is black water, caused by a burst underground pipe or a flood.  In that case, it can also present a potential biohazard.  If it’s clean water, you don’t have to worry about this potential issue.  But, it’s still imperative to act on it immediately to minimize the damage.

How the Length of Exposure Affects Your Hardwood Floor

  • Water Damage Between One and 24 Hours — Within just one hour, water can begin to cause damage to your gym floor.  As the hours go by, it can seep between the boards and cause them to swell.
  • Water Damage up to Seven Days — After day one, the hardwood floorboards might start warping.  During this period, mold and mildew will begin appearing.
  • Water Damage After Seven or More Days — If water damage persists in your facility for over seven days, it could affect your entire gym’s structural integrity.  Mold remediation and other decontamination services might also be necessary.  If your facility has experienced such damage, you can expect a more protracted and more expensive restoration project.

Restoring a Water Damaged Gym Floor: Overview

The way you go about restoring a water-damaged gym floor will depend on the severity of the situation.  In some cases, if the water damage has only occurred in a small area, you can replace it and sand the floor to ensure uniformity.  

In other instances, you might have to replace the entire hardwood floor and dry your subfloor to ensure the best performance and longevity. Sanding and refinishing your floor can also be an opportunity to introduce a fresh design and create custom floor lettering, logos, or school symbols.

Misconceptions

Unfortunately, there are a lot of misconceptions circulating online on how to mitigate water damage.  The most common misconception includes using fans and dehumidifiers to reduce the moisture in the water-damaged floorboards.  While this may sound like a good idea in theory, it doesn’t work in practice.  

Once the wood soaks up an excessive amount of water, it can’t go back to normal.  While it won’t help restore the wood floor, this practice is still necessary to dry the concrete subfloor before repairing or replacing the floorboards. 

If there’s excessive water on your court, you can use a Shop-Vac to remove what you can before professional help arrives.  To ensure that your floor gets the best possible treatment, it’s always best to contact a trusted gym flooring contractor in New Jersey as soon as possible. They’ll know what the best solution is for your particular situation.

How Long Does Gym Floor Water Damage Restoration Take?

The time it will take to get your gym floor back in working condition will depend on how severe the water damage is.  It will also depend on the size of your sports facility.  For larger venues, it can take several months for the material to completely dry.  

With this in mind, it’s always best to immediately seek help from licensed gym flooring professionals.  The sooner you stop the leak and remove the water, the less time (and money) it will take to restore your sports facility.

Contact Us Today

Timing is key in addressing the issue of water damage.  Even with minor spills, it’s crucial to suction up the water and dry the area to avoid structural damage to the floor.  

When water sits on your hardwood floor for an extensive period, it can reach into the sublevels and cause significant problems.  Prolonged water exposure can lead to mildew and mold growth.  In such cases, it’s crucial to take all of the necessary measures to ensure compliance with the MFMA sport-specific standards.

Halting the source of water is the first step in minimizing the overall damage, and potentially saving your hardwood gym floor.  If your gym has experienced a water leak that has affected your hardwood floor, contact us immediately.  We’ll start with the water extraction process asap to reduce damage to your floor.  

Call us at (973) 801-7219. Or fill out our online form to schedule a consultation and request a proposal.

custom wall padding athlete safety

Investing in Custom Wall Padding for Athlete Safety

From the quality of your flooring to the supporting elements in your gym, safety should make the top of your list.  Unfortunately, when designing a gym, most facility operators often overlook a crucial component — custom wall padding for athlete safety. 

Injuries can occur in a blink of an eye during gym class.  Athletes can quickly lose control of their momentum and balance.  If this happens, they run the risk of hitting a nearby wall, column, corner, beam, or other hard surfaces.  And, without protective wall padding in the gym, they can get seriously injured. 

We are specialists in creating protective wall padding for indoor and outdoor sports facilities.  We feel it’s our responsibility to share our inside knowledge on ensuring maximum protection of student-athletes in the gym and on the field with custom wall padding for athlete safety. 

Safety and Compliance

In many cases, local law obliges schools and sports facilities to install gym wall padding. Although these regulations vary from district to district, there are many good reasons to install gym wall pads.  Suppose you’re not familiar with the current rules and regulations in your area. In that case, it’s best to check the safety code for gyms without delay.

As new safety instruments are continuously developed, the rulebook changes often.  That is why you should always be up to date with the local and state regulation.  With this in mind, don’t shy away from professional help or contact the appropriate regulatory authority.  Ensuring student protection and regulatory compliance should be a priority for every school gym.

Custom Wall Padding for athlete safety: A Must for all Indoor Sports

Concussions are a common injury for student-athletes.  Sports such as basketball and handball are often marked by intense and fast-paced action.  Athletes endure hard contact, dive for loose balls, and can lose control during fast break plays.  A high-impact collision with a hard surface can cause a concussion and sometimes broken bones.

Even in sports with minimal contact, such as volleyball, the risk of concussion is always present. As athletes run to save the ball from going out of bounds, they put themselves in danger of hitting a nearby wall or column.  These injuries can be particularly serious, as the players are often entirely focused on the ball.  This exposes them to more severe injuries.

Every P.E. activity comes with its risks, and there are no athletic activities that are entirely risk-free.  The only question is how to maximize user protection.  The best answer to this is to minimize the possibility of injury. 

Cushioning the blows your student-athletes endure upon impact can help significantly reduce the risk of head trauma.  This brings us to the next important part of this issue.

Avoiding Concussions

Recent statistics show that for people from 15 to 24 years of age, sports-related injuries rank second only to vehicle crashes as the leading cause of concussions.  This is a staggering statistic, especially when we consider that a significant percentage of sports-related concussions can be prevented by ensuring adequate safety standards in the gym.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 300,000 sports-related concussions occur each year in the US.  Studies have also found that high school students are more vulnerable to injuries than older athletes.  It also takes high school students more time to recover from an injury.

Traditionally, school physicians and coaches rely on students to self-report their symptoms.  But, this system is problematic mainly due to two reasons.  Such reports are simply not reliable and valid enough.  More importantly, the students are not knowledgeable enough to determine what constitutes a concussion and what issues could stem from it if it’s not treated correctly.  If left untreated, a concussion can affect the student in three ways:

  • A rare but fatal event, caused by a massive brain swelling
  • A less severe, but debilitating injury with persistent headaches, dizziness, and eventually depression that can last for several months
  • Cumulative long-term health effects

Taking this into account, if you are a facility operator or coach, make sure to play it safe at all times.  Even if you have all of the safety elements in place, it never hurts to be extra careful. Educate your students on this issue, and keep your eyes on the play during gym class.  Suppose you suspect that a student has sustained an injury.  In that case, it’s your responsibility to run immediate testing and provide the necessary help.

Visual Appearance

Safety should always be your number one priority.  But aside from providing added protection, custom wall padding will also enhance your facility’s visual appearance.  Custom-created pads will brighten up your facility and give it a fresh new look.  You can use them to spread brand awareness and build up your school spirit.  You can custom design your wall padding with school symbols and tailor it to fit any space you request.

Is Your Padding Up to the Task?

Gym wall padding can help keep your student-athletes safe while significantly reducing the risk of serious injuries.  It’s one of the simplest and most effective ways to promote safety in your gym.  Don’t ignore the potential safety hazards in your sports facility.  Choose our top-quality, easy-to-all install, custom wall padding, and make sure that your gym is as safe as possible.

We’re based in Northern New Jersey, and we service most of NJ, NY, CT, PA, DE & MD.  We provide our clients with knowledgeable and reliable experts from start to finish.  If you live outside of our service areas, we can ship the wall padding straight to your address, anywhere in the US.  Call us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form and we’ll get back to you without delay.

sustainable hardwood maple sports floors

How Sustainable are Hardwood Maple Sports Floors?

Building communities on sustainable natural resources is an altruistic goal.  The dangers of irresponsible resource overuse are indisputable.  That’s why it’s essential to find a balance and avoid being wasteful.  In this regard, it’s easy to understand that you can waste a natural resource like wood by overexploiting it without any future plans.  But, there are a lot of misconceptions about hardwoods that turn off potential customers.  This is especially the case when it comes to highly-valued resources, like hardwood maple timber.  So, let’s talk about just how sustainable hardwood maple sports floors really are.

Are We Running Low on Hardwood Floors?

The World Wildlife Fund predicts that the demand for timber will triple by 2050.  With such exponential growth in the market, many think there could be a shortage of hardwood.  So, is hardwood flooring a dying industry?  Fortunately, the reality of the situation isn’t so bleak.

In the US alone, there are currently 737 million acres of forests. This comprises a third of the entire nation.  People often fail to realize that, with proper management and monitoring, it’s possible to maintain the existing forests and still have a fully functioning timber industry.

The Forest Resources of the United States, 2002 shows that the country grows six times more hardwoods than it harvests each year.  Such sustainable practices have allowed a proliferation of hardwoods in every region of the United States.

There’s no reason to worry about hardwoods running out.  With responsible harvest and use, the timber market, including the hardwood flooring industry, can stay fully sustainable in the future.

What Makes Hardwood Maple Sports Floors Sustainable

Aside from their aesthetic appeal, hardwood floors are a sustainable option for people who prioritize environmental responsibility.  If you’re wondering if hardwood maple sports floors are the right solution for your facility, knowing more about them will help you make an informed decision.  Let’s take a look at the most significant reasons why hardwood maple sports floors are the most sustainable choice. 

Sustainable Harvesting

Wood is renewable, recyclable, and doesn’t require any energy expenses to grow.  With proper rules and regulations, harvesting trees has a minimal effect on the environment.  Government legislation has been established to control the amount of wood that can be harvested and the harvesting timeline.  For every cubic foot of cut down trees, 1.66 cubic feet should be replanted. This rate allows enough time for hardwood trees to mature and grow.

Maintainable Manufacturing

The manufacturing process for most flooring products often leaves a lot of waste and left-over materials.  But the waste produced by installing synthetic materials is often worse.  Hardwood growth isn’t as resource-demanding as products that require a lot of chemical treatment. Moreover, the amount of waste left over from manufacturing hardwood floorboards is minimal. That’s because almost everything left, from wood chips to sawdust, is used to produce other natural composite products.  

Environmentally Friendly

Over the past couple of decades, the demand for environmentally-friendly solutions has continuously been on the rise.  Because they’re carbon-neutral, hardwood floors have a minimal environmental impact.  Since hardwood sports floors are hypoallergenic, the contamination from mold, dust, and other allergens is minimal.  According to the Environmental Protection Agency, hardwood flooring improves overall indoor air quality.  And good air quality reduces volatile organic compounds, which can have long-term and short-term health consequences for facility users.

Long-lasting Lifecycle

Hardwood maple floors are a more expensive investment initially, but they can save you a lot of money in the long run.  If properly maintained and cared for, they can last for a lifetime. Comparatively, synthetic flooring products usually only last for a couple of decades.  What’s more, hardwood is less likely to show wear and tear as quickly as synthetic flooring materials. But to maximize hardwood flooring’s longevity, you should screen and recoat your hardwood floors every year.  You should also sand down and refinish them when they start to wear out.

Sustainable Hardwood Forests: What They Mean for the Future

Hardwood forests are a renewable natural resource.  When supported with adequate planning and management of foresting services, hardwood trees naturally renew.  Proper forestry in regards to hardwoods includes selective harvesting and not clearcutting.  Selective harvesting is a process in which hardwood trees, such as maple, are individually marked and selectively cut down.

Such practices support sustainability, as removing older trees frees up space for younger trees to grow and benefit from increased sunlight.  In addition, there are many other benefits of selective harvesting.  One of the most important advantages is that selective harvesting helps reduce greenhouse gasses.  Young hardwood trees are more efficient at removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than mature trees. 

Learn More about Sustainable Hardwood Floors

As an unrivaled full-service sports flooring company on the East Coast, J&J Gym Floors is committed to sustainable and environmentally-friendly flooring products.  With more than 17,400 projects completed since 2003, we understand the importance of promoting sustainable and long-term sports floors.

If you want to install a sustainable hardwood maple sports floor in your facility, we’ve got you covered!  At J&J Gym Floors, we fully support sustainable forestry management and high-quality hardwood floors.  Whether you want to find out more about this topic or are looking for a reliable sports flooring partner, don’t hesitate to reach out to our friendly customer representatives.  Call us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our short online form.  We’ll get back to you without delay.

hardwood gym floor failing signs

Top 4 Signs Your Hardwood Gym Floor is Failing

Hardwood gym floors are widely regarded as the best flooring solution for sports facilities. They’re built to endure decades of foot traffic and withstand a lot of wear and tear.  But even the best quality gym floors need proper maintenance and occasional repairs. To guarantee the hardwood floor’s optimum performance, you must keep an eye out for signs that the floor is starting to fail.  In this article, we’ve singled out the top four signs your hardwood gym floor is failing.

What Causes Wood Floor Problems?

Before we get deeper into the main subject, it’s important to address the leading causes of gym floor problems.  Excessive moisture causes most issues, which can come as a result of several different reasons, covered below.

Improper Installation

Poor installation can lead to a long list of problems.  If your flooring contractor didn’t take the time to properly prep the subfloor and carefully install the hardwood boards, your floor would never perform as intended.  An improperly installed floor will absorb too much moisture and won’t have enough give to it.  This can lead to one of the most severe hardwood gym floor problems — buckling.

Poor Indoor Air Quality

Low-quality indoor air can have a detrimental effect on both the facility users and the hardwood. It’s best to follow MFMA’s recommendations to ensure optimum indoor air conditions.  The MFMA suggests maintaining indoor relative humidity between 35% and 50%, and the indoor air temperature between 55 and 75 degrees year-round.

Correct air conditioning practices are especially important if you live in an area prone to high humidity.  Adjusting and controlling indoor air conditions during muggy spring and summer months will minimize moisture absorption in the floor.

Water Under or on the Hardwood Gym Floor

Unlike humidity, which slowly seeps into the hardwood pores, water can cause damage fairly quickly.  Damage can occur from leaky roofs, burst underground pipes, or even from a water spill that hasn’t been cleaned promptly.

It’s crucial to remove any water from the hardwood sports floor immediately.  Acting fast can prevent the water from slipping into the cracks and causing problems.  If water manages to find its way under the hardwood floor, it can lead to mold growth, buckling, cupping, and several other issues.  

How to Spot Hardwood Gym Floor Failing Signs

Most moisture-related hardwood floor problems are easy to spot if you know what to look for.  As a natural material, wood “moves” according to the environmental conditions that surround it. These movements can show you whether the wood is stressed or compromised in any way. There are four telltale signs which indicate that your gym floor is failing.

1.      Cupping

Cupping happens because of extreme changes in relative indoor humidity.  It occurs when the edges of the hardwood board take in excess moisture and rise above the center of the board. The wood boards become wetter on the bottom than on the top surface, leading to moisture imbalance.  As the entire gym floor expands, compression crushes the boards together and leads to board deformities at the edges.

2.      Buckling

Buckling is the most extreme sign that your floor is failing.  It’s when a hardwood floor completely breaks down and often requires a renovation.  Buckling happens when the gym floor entirely separates from the subfloor.  It can cause certain areas of the court to lift several inches. This severe reaction is a rare occurrence.  It happens after a flood or other natural disaster, during which the floor was submerged underwater for an extended period.  

3.      Crowning

Crowning is a process opposite to cupping.  It happens when the board’s center is higher than its edges.  Crowning occurs when the top and bottom surfaces of the hardwood board have different moisture levels.  Prolonged exposure to moisture on top of the hardwood floor causes crowning.  However, crowning can also occur on floors that have been recently renovated and weren’t given enough time to dry.

4.      Cracks Between Boards

Cracks between boards happen due to seasonal shifts that lead up to the dry winter months. Fortunately, these issues are relatively easy to avoid.  You need to monitor the indoor air conditions and take corrective actions to prevent significant temperature and humidity swings. Make the most of your gym’s AC and consider adding humidifiers to control the moisture.  Keep in mind that minimal gaps and shifts are a normal result of changing temperatures and generally don’t require any fixes.

Failing Signs That Are Difficult to Spot

Aside from the four hardwood gym floor failing signs mentioned above, there are also a few occurrences that are harder to spot.  Subfloor problems can cause some of these issues listed. And, while they’re much more difficult to detect, subfloor problems can have equally harmful consequences.  These problems often occur due to water leaks or faulty concrete or wood subfloor installations.

The most effective way to avoid these issues is to measure the moisture content before, during, and after the hardwood gym floor installation.  This is a process that should be taken very seriously, as it presents an invaluable way of resolving significant problems.  For this reason, you must choose a proven and reliable hardwood gym flooring partner.  

Fix Your Failing Gym Floor

Is your hardwood gym floor showing signs of failing?  If you’ve noticed any of the symptoms we’ve discussed on this page, don’t hesitate to get a professional assessment.  Whether you want to repair your hardwood floor or are planning on a complete surface replacement, our professional and experienced contractors are at your disposal. 

To learn more about how we can help with your next hardwood gym flooring project, contact us today!  Call (973) 801-7219 or fill out our quick online form and we’ll get back to you asap!

outdoor field padding

Top 6 Ways to Brand Your School Gym and Outdoor Field

When reminiscing about past school days, most remember their school’s logo and colors.  For many working adults, the nostalgia and memories of school spirit rarely fade as the years go by.

All of this is the result of effective school branding.  It creates a powerful and firm concept of a particular institution, often driving positive emotions about the entire experience.  For an untrained eye, the process of generating school branding may appear fairly straightforward.  But, there are a lot of essential details to consider when originating school branding ideas.  

Besides providing a variety of services, including selling custom products and equipment, we also specialize in branding.  On this page, we’ll share the six most effective branding tactics that can be of great use if you’re embarking on a rebranding project.

1.     Make the Most of Fencing to brand your outdoor field

Most outdoor athletic facilities have fencing wrapped around the field.  It keeps the players and fans safe and marks the field of competition.  If your school has an outdoor sports facility, you should have fencing around it.  If you already have fencing, you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to plaster it with your school’s colors and logos to create an unbeatable home atmosphere. When your athletes see the field plastered with your school’s symbols, they will feel more immersed.  They’ll give their all to win and make their classmates and coaches proud.

Putting walls pads or even adding simple vinyl covers on the fencing is a great way to give your student-athletes the extra motivations to outperform their opponents on home ground.  At J&J Gym Floors, we create custom padding that’s easy to install and is second to none in durability.

2.     Be Creative with the Dugouts and Railings

Dugout structures and railings are often underrated, both in terms of their role in ensuring player safety and offering branding possibilities.  They are essential if you want to maximize the protection of your student-athletes.  These safety structures also provide a lot of free space for displaying your school’s logo, mascot, culture, sponsors, or anything else that can play up team spirit.

Although dugout branding is only applicable if your school has a baseball or softball field, railings are present in most outdoor stadiums.  Consider using these surfaces and other structures, like barriers and railings on track and field stadiums.  They provide a simple and effective way to promote your school’s brand and build a culture.

3.     Take Advantage of Wall Space

School gymnasiums provide you with a lot of free space for building up your school’s brand.  You can add logos on each of the walls and even set aside an entire wall to highlight your school’s achievements and records.  Another great way to take advantage of free wall space is to invest in wall graphics that depict students’ famous moments and past accomplishments.  If you have an outdoor stadium with a press box or other nearby structures, consider putting logos and wall graphics on them.

4.     Don’t Forget Columns and Corner Walls

Posts and corners in a gym facility can pose a significant safety hazard for your students.  In high-contact, fast-paced sports, students can quickly lose control and collide with nearby posts and corner walls.  For this reason, you should have custom padding for every column, post, and corner of your indoor sports facility.  They can significantly reduce the risk of injury.

Installing these pads presents another opportunity to increase your school’s brand awareness. By customizing the pads with school symbols, mascots or logos, you’ll make your gym pop with colors and instill a positive feeling in every athlete who steps foot on the court.  If your gym court is next to your school’s stage, you can include custom-made stage pads.  All of these little details together make a bold statement and leave a lasting impression on every student.

5.     Keep the Logos Simple to brand your school gym

While it’s important that you use the free space in your facilities to promote your school’s spirit, you should also be careful not to go overboard with the design.  Complex logos with too much visual details and convoluted information often fail to convey the message.  Remember to keep the logos simple, bold, and sleek.

You can draw inspiration from other school’s logos, but avoid imitating them.  This makes for a poor branding strategy and could potentially bring legal trouble.  If you need help brainstorming logos and brand ideas, our staff is at your disposal.  They can help you design symbols that best represent your school’s spirit.

6.     Make Your School Brand Unique

Your school is unique, and you should be proud of it.  Your logo should reflect your facility in the best possible light.  But while your logo is critical to brand awareness, it’s only one part of building your school’s brand identity.  That’s why it’s worth taking some extra time to think up other ways to build team spirit around it.  Don’t be afraid to get creative and, if necessary, don’t shy away from an experienced professional’s advice.

Developing or rebuilding a brand can be a challenging task to handle.  If you need help with building up your school’s brand, we’re here for you.  From design work to custom branding products, you can count on us!  With over fifteen years of industry experience and more than 17,000 completed projects, we offer a superior service unrivaled in the industry.  We’ll make sure you get the logos and graphics that best represent your school. Contact us about how to brand your school gym and outdoor field. 

gym class students safe

3 Ways to Keep Student Athletes Safe in Gym Class and on the Field

Every school should put the safety of its students at the top of its priority list. As a responsible facility administrator, it’s up to you to keep your students safe.  But where do you start when it comes to handling such a broad and challenging obligation?  How can you make sure that your school’s sports facilities are as safe as they can be?  On this page, we’ll share three simple yet effective ways to keep your student-athletes safe in gym class and on the field.

Most Common Injuries in Gym Class and on the Field

The number of gym class injuries is growing year after year.  It’s up to the teachers, coaches, and facility operators to mitigate and prevent student injuries in gym class and during track and field.  According to recent research, over 60,000 US students experience some kind of injury each year during gym class.  Inadequate safety equipment or subpar indoor gym standards cause a good portion of these accidents.  The most common injuries include:

  • Dislocated joints — Coaches often see their student-athletes go down from dislocated knees, joints, or ligament injuries due to slipping and awkwardly falling.
  • Concussions — These injuries are common among fast-paced contact sports in which players can lose balance and uncontrollably hit the ground or other objects.
  • Contusions — Similar to the two previous types of injuries, but different in that they can cause more harm to the student and even require medical intervention.

The three above are the most common types of injuries among student-athletes.  Although, there are many other injuries your students can experience due to insufficient safety standards. Let’s address one of the most critical parts of your gymnasium regarding athlete safety — the hardwood floor.

Is Your Gym Floor the Best it Can Be?

In one of our previous blogs, we went into great detail on how a quality gym floor can go a long way in keeping athletes safe from injury.  Low-quality floors significantly increase the chances of player injury, especially in sports such as basketball, volleyball, and any other fast-paced indoor sports.  These activities require a lot of jumping and quick movement changes.

A high-quality and safe-to-use hardwood floor should provide adequate traction.  It should also give the right amount of friction.  Lastly, the floor needs to deliver just enough vertical deformation as athletes jump or run.  Hardwood floors that meet all of these requirements are capable of protecting students from slipping, falling, and injuring themselves.

Gym Floor Hygiene

2020 has been a doozy of a year.  With everything that’s happened, many people are starting to pay more attention to safety and germ protection. 

When it comes to gym floor disinfection, you should implement a regular hardwood cleaning routine using mild cleaners that won’t damage your hardwood floor. 

If you’ve got a high-traffic gym, you should consider cleaning the floor once or twice a day, to minimize the potential spread of viruses and bacteria.  It’s essential to have an excellent COVID-19 hardwood maintenance routine to effectively maintain a high standard of hygiene.

Three Ways to Keep Your Student-athletes Safe From Injury

Aside from the gym floor, your gymnasium should be equipped with many other pieces of safety gear.  For all contact sports, both indoors and outdoors, this includes helmets, mouthguards, and any other equipment that can contribute to the student’s safety and protection.  The facility itself should also be equipped with protective gear.  There are three main types of protective equipment that will keep your students safe during sports activities.  We will go over them now. 

Outdoor Field Padding

Outdoor field padding can considerably improve the safety standards of your sports field. Moreover, with so many customization options available today, you can personalize the field padding with details such as your school’s logo, mascot, and much more.  The field padding will keep your players safe while also improving the look of the outdoor field. 

Adding backstop padding should be your top priority.  It can significantly reduce the risk of sprains, contusions, concussions, and other injuries.  Additionally, if your school has a baseball field, consider installing padding on dugout railings and fences.  While not as popular as field padding, dugout padding is just as important.  It protects both the athletes on the field and the players and coaches sitting in the dugout.

Stage Pads and Scorer’s Tables

Most school gymnasiums are located just below the school’s stage.  If your facility is also structured in such a way, installing stage pads can ensure that your student-athletes don’t get hurt if they collide with the stage.

In most schools, the bleachers and scorers’ tables are relatively close to the court.  Upgrading your court with scoring table pads can help make your gym safer and more visually appealing.  It will protect both the athletes and the fans, and offer you a blank branding surface for you to add customizable details to make your gym unique.

Gym Wall Padding

Gym wall padding plays a significant role in protecting your athletes from a variety of injuries, most notably concussions and head trauma.  It protects players from collision injuries and enhances the safety of all facility users. If you’re looking to enhance your gym’s security standards, installing wall padding or replacing old and worn out pads should be your top priority.

At J&J Gym Floors, we specialize in creating custom safety products and equipment to help your school stay safe and stand out. With nearly two decades of industry expertise and over 17,400 completed projects, our experience is your guarantee!

Is your gym floor in need of refurbishing and redesign?  Do you want to secure your outdoor playing field? Or maybe you need better wall padding.  Whatever it may be, if you need help making your school safer, we’re here for you!  Give us a call now at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our quick online form, and we’ll get back to you without delay.

grades of maple wood

How to Pick the Right Grade of Maple Wood for Your Sports Floor

Before it gets installed in your sports facility, maple hardwood undergoes a long milling process in the lumber mill.  But, since it’s a natural product, maple wood comes in many variations. Because every board is unique and different, precise specifications designate exact grades of maple based on its characteristics.  Continue reading to learn about the different maple classes and how to pick the right grade of maple wood for your sports floor.

Grading Rules for Hardwood Maple Floors

As a natural product, maple hardwood comes in many sizes, colors, and variations.  When it comes to sports flooring, variations in knotting, markings, and bark streaks are marked as defects. The Maple Floors Manufacturer’s Association (MFMA) grading rules define three standard grades of maple. 

Before we dive into the grading rules and definitions, it’s important to note that the grade of maple doesn’t impact how well a gym floor performs.  Instead, these grades mainly refer to the visual appearance of the floor. 

First Grade Maple Sports Flooring

First grade maple sports flooring is the highest-rated MFMA grade hardwood.  It adheres to the strictest standards and is hand-picked to minimize variations of the maple species.  First grade maple is used in many sports arenas and is desired for professional competitions.  With no visual defects, first grade maple makes for a lighter-colored and smoother-looking floor. 

Because first grade maple adheres to the highest industry standards, first grade maple flooring comes with a higher price point.  Also, first grade maple standards include:

  • Pin knots no more than 1/8’’ in diameter
  • No bark streaks
  • No dark green or black spots larger than 1/4’’ wide and 3’’ long
  • The underside of the flooring doesn’t have any shallow places longer than 12’’

Second Grade Maple Sports Flooring

Second grade maple flooring is the most commonly specified grade, and it allows for more natural variations than first grade maple flooring.  Second grade maple will have some knotting, but knots can’t be on the edges or ends of the strips.  It also admits distinct variations in color, as well as numerous dark green or black spots.

While it exhibits more variations, second grade maple flooring won’t have bark streaks.  Second grade maple flooring is a popular choice for venues that don’t host high-level sports competitions, such as high school gyms and some commercial facilities.

Third Grade Maple Sports Flooring

The difference between first grade, second grade, and third grade maple flooring is mainly aesthetic.  Due to the more natural variations, third grade maple often comes in darker-looking finished variants.  In fact, some sports facilities prefer installing third grade maple floors.  It provides them with more natural tones and adds unique character to their court.

While third grade maple sports flooring is allowed to have certain natural defects, the wood still must be of good quality and structurally sound.  Any imperfections that could affect performance are removed during the floorboard milling treatment.

Important Considerations for Your Sports Floor

When considering what grade of maple wood is right for your sports facility, you should consider a few essential aspects.  These include the cost of the floor, appearance, and key performance attributes.  Let’s take a brief look at each of these characteristics next. 

Cost

This aspect plays a significant role in the decision-making process of nearly every sports facility owner.  In terms of cost, you should consider two factors — the cost of installation and the long-term value. 

Compared to other sports flooring solutions, maple hardwood floors have a high cost of installation and require a relatively significant initial investment.  However, when you factor in the long-term cost, maple hardwood floors prove to be the best flooring solution.  They’re not very expensive to maintain and can last much longer than all other sports flooring materials.

Appearance

Unlike an objective specification, such as the cost of the floor, the appearance of the floor is an entirely subjective consideration.  Each of the three above-specified grades of maple floors has specific aesthetic characteristics. Based on what color schemes and visual appearance you’re looking for, you need to choose an appropriate grade of maple hardwood boards. When choosing, keep in mind what we mentioned above — the grade of maple flooring only affects the visual appearance, not performance.

Key Attributes

The previous two factors are critical when choosing a flooring surface.  But, there’s also one more essential factor to consider — the end use of your floor. Make sure to pick a flooring surface that offers the appropriate benefits for the sports and types of activities you plan to carry out in the facility.  These factors don’t depend much on the grade of the maple itself but the variety of the wood.  The most important performance characteristics are:

  • Surface Friction — Also called the coefficient of friction, surface friction measures the floor’s capabilities of controlling sliding on the surface.  For a maple hardwood floor, surface friction must be high enough to prevent players from slipping and possibly injuring themselves.  The recommended sliding coefficient value is between 80 and 110 for sports like basketball and volleyball.
  • Shock Absorption — This is a vital aspect of any sports floor installation.  A quality maple hardwood floor with the right amount of shock absorption makes a big impact on player longevity and long-term joint problems.  A hardwood floor that hosts games played on a high competition level should have a shock absorption level of at least 22%. The American Society for Testing and Materials precisely specifies these and many other rules in their ASTM F2772 guidelines.
  • Deflection – Vertical deflection and area of deflection are two measurements that form a benchmark for vertical displacement.  The former deals with vertical displacement of the floor during impact.  The latter measures the area of the floor set into motion during impact.
  • Ball Bounce – Ball bounce is a measurement reflecting the ball’s response reflecting off of the hardwood maple surface.  In sports like basketball, having just the right bounce height is imperative for a quality hardwood floor.

Get Help Choosing the Right Flooring Solution

Maple hardwood floors are the best and most practical choice for sports flooring. They’re aesthetically pleasing, resilient, and environmentally-friendly. Most importantly, hardwood maple floors possess the best physical characteristics out of all sports flooring solutions. As a natural product, maple hardwood floors come in many variations.  If you have any questions or need help choosing the right grade of maple for your sports flooring project, call us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our short online form.

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.

concrete slab new sports floor

How to Prep Your Concrete Slab for a New Sports Floor

So, you’ve picked out a new hardwood maple floor, chosen the design pattern, and are ready to proceed with the installation.  But, are you sure you performed all of the necessary tests before installing a new hardwood floor? 

Your new, expensive hardwood gym floor doesn’t mean much if what’s underneath it isn’t up to par.  In this post, we want to pay extra attention to a vital part of your flooring system — the concrete slab.  Continue reading to learn how to prep your concrete slab for a new sports floor and ensure your new hardwood court’s top quality and performance.

The Importance of a High-Quality Concrete Slab

When pouring a new concrete slab and installing a maple hardwood floor for the first time, you rightfully expect that you’ll end up with a finished product that will last for decades.  But, there are a lot of aspects to consider when it comes to pouring the slab correctly.

When mixing the concrete, you want to make sure that you add the right amount of water.  Too much liquid will lead to moist concrete.  On the other hand, use too little liquid, and the floor won’t cure.  The result is a weak floor prone to damage and other issues.  The concrete mixing process also requires selecting appropriate ingredients and their correct dosage for each specific case.

If you already have a concrete slab and are looking to replace your existing hardwood floor, you should run specific tests to ensure that the slab is up to the task.  Before installing a new floor, you’ll want to test the concrete for dryness, smoothness, and flatness.  With so many variables that can go wrong, it’s best to leave both the testing and installation process to a licensed gym flooring professional.

You should also consider the type of concrete and location of the slab.  The latter is a bit easier to determine.  You have to establish whether the slab is located at ground level, above, or below grade.  Determining the location is essential as it will allow you to minimize any moisture issues that may occur.  As far as choosing the correct concrete, that all depends on what type of hardwood floor you’re going to have installed.  Certain types of concrete are more appropriate for different floor surfaces.

Dealing with Moisture

Moisture is the leading cause of a long list of hardwood floor problems, and the most serious is buckling and cupping.  Excess moisture is also the primary culprit in inadequate concrete subflooring.  If the concrete slab is not sealed, it most likely has a high level of moisture.  Since wood naturally contracts and expands based on its environmental conditions, it can soak up the slab’s excess moisture.  This can lead to a range of floor problems, including mildew and mold growth.  The two most common causes leading to moisture problems in a concrete slab are:

  • Water damage — Major water damage such as flooding and other disasters can cause significant harm to your slab’s structural integrity.  This can lead to persistent moisture problems, which can be difficult to remedy. 
  • Drastic Environmental Changes — If you live in an area that experiences extreme hot and cold periods, you must maintain stable environmental conditions inside your facility. Standard MFMA recommendations state that the indoor relative humidity should be between 35% and 50%, with temperatures between 55 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Significant fluctuations in indoor temperatures and humidity levels can have a detrimental effect on the slab.

If your facility has experienced flooding or issues with the HVAC system, your slab might suffer from excess moisture problems.  Aside from these causes, your concrete slab might also be susceptible to moisture due to many other reasons.  For example, maybe it lacks a moisture barrier or has a faulty barrier installed beneath it.  If your previous contractor rushed the installation process and didn’t leave enough time for the concrete to cure, the slab might have trapped moisture that can’t evaporate. 

How to Solve Slab Moisture Problems and Prep for a New Sports Floor

Understanding your slab’s moisture content and condition will significantly contribute to a successful hardwood floor installation over the slab.  And, the best way to figure out the condition of the slab is to test it directly.  When examining a concrete slab for moisture, there are two widely accepted tests — the relative humidity test, and the calcium chloride test.

Regardless of which test your contractor recommends, it’s of utmost importance to ensure that moisture levels are acceptable before installing the hardwood floor.  If you determine that the slab has higher moisture content than recommended, your flooring contractor has a few tricks up their sleeve.  Most often, fixing the slab involves an application of an epoxy or cementitious urethane.  This application would act as a barrier between the slab and the hardwood boards.

Find the Right Flooring Partner

Although straightforward, prepping the concrete slab should be done correctly.  It’s a labor-intensive job that requires industry knowledge and skill.  An incorrectly-prepared concrete slab with imperfections can significantly impact the new floor’s performance and longevity. Ultimately, you want your floor to perform the best it can and last for decades.  This is why you should leave this part of the process to licensed and trusted flooring professionals.

As a full-service flooring company, we’ll make sure your floor is of top quality, from the slab to the surface.  If you have questions on prepping your concrete slab or are looking for a reliable flooring partner for your new project, contact us!  Fill out our short online form or call us at (973) 801-7219 to schedule a consultation or request a proposal.  We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

flooring indoor air quality

Building Healthier Schools: How Flooring Impacts Indoor Air Quality

Flooring materials have a significant impact on the indoor air quality of the entire building.  Being mindful of the type and quality of flooring materials is a great way to keep school students safe and healthy.  In recent years, green construction alternatives have gained momentum, especially in the U.S.  Today’s architects and planners strive to create sport objects that are not only functional, but also safe to use and visually appealing.  With that in mind, whether you’re looking for ways to improve indoor quality or want to renovate your school’s floors completely, this article will help you learn more about how flooring impacts indoor air quality.

Why Indoor Air Quality is Essential

Healthy building practices and materials make the indoor environment safer for students.  These materials minimize air pollutants known as volatile organic compounds (VOCs).  Unhealthy building materials will emit VOCs over time.  Volatile organic compounds are organic chemicals that have a high vapor pressure at ordinary room temperature.  VOCs are numerous, varied, and can have both short-term and long-term health effects.

Consequently, they may worsen a student’s allergies and asthma and cause a great deal of other problems.  Although VOCs can affect both children and adults, students are more likely to feel the impacts of VOCs.  This is because children experience higher exposure to pollutants as they breathe more air per pound of body weight.

Indoor Air Quality, Health Impacts, and VOCs

Children absorb a higher percentage of environmental contaminants than adults.  The poorer the air quality, the bigger the chances are for students to experience pulmonary issues.  The three main air pollutants associated with inferior flooring are:

  • Allergens (elements and organisms that can cause allergic reactions and asthma)
  •  Irritants (Elements that can trigger allergic reactions and respiratory issues)
  • Toxic Chemicals (Adhesives and cleaning products)

Aside from these, the WHO addresses the three groups of issues that affect indoor air quality. Keeping these determinants in check plays a significant part in preventing respiratory diseases among students and faculty members.  Moreover, better indoor air quality will also decrease the risk of health impacts from respiratory viruses, such as Covid-19.

In large part due to the pandemic that has affected the world over the past few months, the responsibilities of facility owners and operators have changed significantly.  Since the novel coronavirus has more severe consequences for those with pre-existing pulmonary issues, maintaining high indoor air quality can play a critical role in controlling its spread and impact.  

How to Pick a Healthy Floor for Your School

Knowing that many viruses and diseases, including Covid-19, spread via contact with surfaces, it’s essential to keep all of your surfaces clean.  But it’s also important to pick the healthiest flooring option for your school.  When it comes to school flooring, the three most popular options are hardwood flooring, carpet flooring, and synthetic flooring.

Some construction materials, especially those of lower quality, contain harmful materials and toxins that can make a significant impact on the overall air quality in your school.  Also, when these toxins get into the air, they interact with other potentially harmful particles in the atmosphere.  These combinations can cause a number of health problems in the people who inhale them.

When choosing new flooring for your school, look for low-VOC products and materials.  Ask your flooring company to install a floor that is least likely to exacerbate moisture and mold-related issues. 

Besides the health-related aspects that you should keep in mind when choosing a floor, also consider the most important non-health issues.  These include the cost of the project, environmental impact, ergonomic performance, and the type of activities that will take place in the area.

Hardwood vs. Other Flooring Materials

If you’re renovating your school’s gym floor, hardwood flooring is still the best option.  Wood floors are the most widely popular type of flooring used in school objects and professional arenas alike.  Hardwood floors are generally more expensive than synthetic floors, but the quality between the two is very distinct. 

Hardwood gym floors are natural, safe to use, and can last for a lifetime.  On the contrary, vinyl is the most toxic flooring material, and should never be your first choice if you have the budget to install hardwood flooring.

As for classrooms, most schools opt to install either vinyl or linoleum floors.  This is a decision that’s mostly influenced by their overall budget.  Even so, as an important part of your school, your classroom floors should get the best possible treatment.  Hardwood classroom floors are the healthiest choice when it comes to indoor air quality for your school.  A natural hardwood floor will provide your students with a healthy indoor environment and protect them from potentially harmful VOCs and other indoor air pollutants. 

Choose a Flooring Company You Can Trust

If your goal is a healthy school, high-quality hardwood flooring should be at the top of your renovation list.  The floor is one of the most important elements that impact the health of an  indoor environment.  And a healthier school will not only be safer for both students and teachers, but it will also enable students to excel in their performances.

Any flooring manufacturer can claim their floors are safe and green.  But, how can you know whether they’re telling the truth if they don’t have sufficient proof to back it up?  Exaggerated marketing claims surrounding sustainability and material quality can be seen at every corner. The best way to avoid companies that use such tactics is to do your research and ensure you work with a credible business.

Finding a trustworthy sports flooring partner will allow you to get the best floor for your school. At J&J Gym Floors, we have established a high-quality flooring service centered on sustainable materials.  We’ve been in the industry since 2003.  Our professionals firmly stand behind their work and always deliver on time and on budget.

Whether you’re looking to repair your classroom hardwood floors or install a brand new stage or gym floor, we’re here for you.  With hundreds of satisfied clients from the education community, our reputation speaks for itself.  If you want to schedule a consultation or have any further questions about our services, contact us today through our easy online form or call 973-801-7219.

humidity hardwood gym floor care

How Humidity Impacts Hardwood Gym Floor Care in Spring and Summer

Just as the changing seasons impact the outside world around us, they can affect your gym’s hardwood floor if you don’t maintain it properly.  Since wood is a hygroscopic material, it can absorb and release moisture from the surrounding environment.  Environmental fluctuations in humidity and moisture can cause a lot of damage to hardwood maple floors. 

The hottest months of the year are quickly approaching.  It’s critical to know how to take care of your hardwood floor in the humid spring and summer.  We’ll also briefly go over how fall and winter impact your court and what you can do to properly maintain your hardwood floor year-round.  Let’s get right into it. 

Ideal Humidity Conditions

According to MFMA’s recommended specifications, facility operators should maintain indoor relative humidity between 35% and 50%.  At the same time, indoor air temperatures should also be kept between 55 degrees and 70 degrees year-round.  By maintaining constant atmospheric conditions, you’ll significantly limit the potential contraction and expansion of the floor.  If the relative humidity of your indoor gym varies more than 15%, the hardwood floor might start to experience excessive shrinkage or expansion.

Hardwood Gym Floor Seasonal Maintenance

How you maintain your hardwood floor depends on the season and the type of climate you live in.  Let’s take a look at how different seasons can affect your indoor court.  We’ll also discuss how you can adjust your humidity hardwood gym floor care routine, depending on the time of year.

Springtime and Indoor Hardwood Courts

Springtime can be a problematic period for gym owners.  Early spring showers often bring water issues that can be tough to deal with.  While there aren’t any specific maintenance tips to adhere to during this period, the most important thing is to be prepared in case your facility floods or experiences some other form of water damage. 

It’s crucial to know who to call to minimize the damage and properly dry the hardwood floor as soon as possible.  An incorrectly-dried floor will cause issues down the line.  The expected lifespan of the sports floor will also be significantly shortened.

In the same line, if the floor experiences prolonged exposure to water, it will start buckling.  This will cause the flooring to pull away from the subfloor.  Fortunately, this is rare.  But if it happens, you’ll have to remove the existing hardwood altogether and install a new gym floor.

Summer and Hardwood Gym Floors

Just like excess humidity can cause damage to your hardwood floor, extensive dry air in your indoor facility can cause cupping or crowning.  Cupping happens because the bottom of the hardwood board contains more moisture than the top. This causes the floor’s edges to rise higher than its center.  Opposite to cupping, crowning is caused by excess moisture in the top section. This makes the center part of the board rise higher than its edges.

To avoid these two problems, keeping the indoor humidity in check is especially important during the hot summer months.  Even if your hardwood floor isn’t used over the summer, the air conditioning system or fans should be running to maintain a stable relative humidity.  If you don’t do so, you’re at risk of creating a greenhouse-like effect, with moisture trapped inside of your sports facility.  If this happens, it will be challenging to remove excess moisture and mitigate the damage.

It’s a good idea to have a device that will continuously monitor relative indoor humidity.  That way, you can quickly adjust your HVAC to any humidity and temperature fluctuations.  Also, consider using a gym floor covering to provide additional protection.  These are particularly useful if you plan on using the floor for other indoor activities that include heavy foot traffic or moving objects across the hardwood.

Fall and Winter Indoor Gym Floor Humidity Control

For most sports facility owners, fall means back to full operation.  Before starting the new school year or sports season, you should make sure that your floor is in the best shape possible. Consider screening and recoating your hardwood floor during this time. The new coat of fresh finish will act as a barrier and prevent any dirt or moisture from getting between the boards.

How you maintain your indoor gym floor in the winter will depend on what part of the country you live in, and the average temperatures and air humidity of your location. If you live in a part of the country that gets dry, cold air during winter months and low relative humidity, shrinkage cracks are a pretty common thing.  Shrinkage cracks are most apparent during winter, as these cracks usually close during spring and summer when the floor absorbs excess moisture from the air.

A mistake that a lot of sports facility operators make is they overheat the inside of the facility during winter months.  This leads to excessively dry air, which depletes the wood of moisture. Large, highly visible gaps between the floorboards appear. 

Ensure Your Floor is Protected Year-round

Significant fluctuations in temperature and humidity can damage your hardwood floor and shorten its lifetime.  That’s why taking proper care of the floor should be your top priority.  A hardwood floor free of dents and damaged patches not only looks better but makes your court much safer to use.

While some of these tips might seem complicated at first glance, protecting your hardwood floor is quite simple.  Maintaining your hardwood floor shouldn’t be an overly-complicated task. Understanding maintenance requirements and adjusting your upkeep solutions throughout the year will go a long way toward your sports facility’s health.  The three most important things to pay attention to are:

  • The temperature inside the gym
  • Relative indoor humidity
  • Having a proper maintenance routine  

If this article left you looking for further answers, feel free to reach out to us at any time!  Whether you need additional tips or want to schedule a professional consultation, contact us online or at 973-801-7219.  We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

basketball court subfloor designs

Basketball Court Subfloor Designs: Details and Considerations

Subflooring systems are the heart of every hardwood floor.  Choosing the right subfloor system guarantees consistent performance of your entire hardwood floor. Ideal subfloor designs also have a significant impact on player performance, comfort, and most importantly — safety.  There are quite a few things to consider when picking a subfloor design.  In this article, we’ll share the most important. Continue reading to learn more about the types of basketball court subfloor designs and the most common subfloor materials.

Common Type of Sports Subfloor Materials

Most gym operators and athletes are unaware of the subfloor’s importance.  But it’s one of the most significant parts of a quality hardwood gym floor.  Before we take a more detailed look at the type of basketball court subfloor designs, we should consider the types of subfloor materials for an indoor gymnasium or basketball court.  Here are the two most popular:

  • Rubber Pads — Rubber or foam pads are very popular subflooring materials and offer many advantages.  Aside from providing near-perfect amounts of shock absorption, rubber pads don’t harden, oxidize, or degrade as they age.
  • Plywood — This type of subflooring can come in many different combinations and multiple layers, such as strips or solid layers.  Before rubber pads were invented, plywood was used on all courts as a strong structural base underneath the hardwood flooring.

Some sports facility owners also opt-in for a third subflooring option, combining the two above-listed materials.  By inserting foam padding inside the plywood or sheathing channels, they get a highly-resilient subfloor with solid dimensional stability that fares better under heavy loads.

Type of Subfloor Designs

The kind of subfloor material you’ll use will depend on the type of subfloor systems you’ll install. Moreover, it’s worth mentioning that the nature of your project will also impact the kind of subfloor design you’ll ultimately choose.  For example, if you’re looking to replace an existing floor, the condition of the concrete slab and its depression will be a deciding factor.  Going by the MFMA specifications, there are three main categories of sports subfloor designs.  Let’s take a closer look at each one next. 

Floating Resilient Sports Floors

These subfloors consist of sheathing or plywood with rubber pads on top. The pads’ primary use is to provide added shock absorption to the hardwood floor placed on top of it.  This makes for a more comfortable floor for athletes when jumping and running.  Floating sports floors are very resilient, but unlike anchored sports floors, they don’t use anchors to keep the floors in place. The subfloor isn’t pinned to the concrete but rather lies on top of the slab.

Fixed Sports Floors

Fixed sports floor systems are directly attached to the concrete slab using screws or pins.  They are the complete opposite of the previous type of subfloor design and provide little to no resilience.  This type of subfloor is designed to be faster than other options. That being said, while it offers better ball rebounds, it also offers less shock absorption.  Athletes don’t get any benefits that usually come with it.

Anchored Resilient Sports Floors

Anchored sports floor systems are mechanically fastened to the concrete slab, combining characteristics of both floating and fixed floors.  They retain the hardwood floor close to the concrete slab, but also give it space to move both vertically and laterally.  This helps minimize vibrations without sacrificing player speed, performance, and movement.  The lateral flexibility of the floor is crucial in preventing significant contraction or expansion of the floor, usually caused by seasonal changes and oscillations in indoor humidity.

Things to Consider When Picking a Subfloor for your Court

When it comes to sports flooring, the topic of subfloor systems ultimately boils down to two things — safety and performance.  The subfloor design plays a crucial part in determining how resistant the surface will be, the floor’s shock absorption levels, and how uniform the floor will feel. 

For example, if you want to pick a subfloor for a sport like basketball or volleyball, you should use an option that provides the best shock absorption to minimize stress on the players’ joints and muscles.  On the other hand, for sports like dance, you should focus most of your attention on ensuring application uniformity.  An inconsistent floor will inhibit user performance and potentially lead to an injury.

This is why, if you want to develop your court for specific sport applications, you should spend some time getting to know all of the benefits and drawbacks of each subfloor configuration.  In the same breath, this is also why it’s crucial to go with a trusted flooring company that can guide you through this process and make choosing a subfloor design for your basketball court less stressful.

At J&J Gym Floors, we’re an experienced company that provides first-rate services to sports teams, organizations, and businesses in the New Jersey area.  Our commitment to quality is our guarantee to all of our customers.  When you select a subflooring system that best suits your facility, we’ll make sure you’re satisfied with the result!

Need Help Choosing the Right Subfloor Design?

Picking the type of subfloor material for your facility boils down to choosing the right design for your hardwood sports floor.  With that in mind, regardless of which option you choose, we’ll make sure you get your money’s worth.  Our experienced professionals will provide you with a top-quality subfloor design solution that will last a lifetime.

If you have any questions about our service or want to find out more information on which subfloor is best for your facility, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Simply fill out our short online form or call us at (973) 801-7219.  We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

gym floors keep athletes safe

How Gym Floors Keep Athletes Safe from Injury

Whether you’re running a high school squad or a pro basketball team, you want your players to be safe when giving their all on the court.  Most coaches are concerned with how the games are played, especially in contact sports. One more factor significantly impacts the players’ safety when competing – the gym floor.  In this post, we’ll talk about just how much a quality hardwood gym floor can impact on injury rates and player conditioning.

The Importance of a Quality Gym Floor to Keep Athletes Safe

When it comes to determining the quality of an indoor gym floor, the current guidelines are specified by the American Society for Testing and Materials in their ASFM F2772 rules.  If you’re interested in learning more about the specific standards, we recommend you read their guidelines.

On this page, we won’t delve too far into the numbers.  Instead, we’ll focus on how a top-standard gym floor can reduce the likelihood of player injury.  Let’s get into the specifics of how quality gym floors keep athletes safe. 

Improved Traction Prevents Injuries 

In fast-paced sports that require a lot of jumping and quick movement changes, proper traction is vital in preventing injuries.  Gym floors that fail to provide adequate traction, or have too much friction, can cause players to slip, fall, and injure themselves.  For this reason, hardwood floors, especially high-quality ones used by professional teams, must adhere to precise specifications.

These requirements are outlined in great detail in the ASTM F2772, which defines recommended coefficients of friction for safe and secure player movement.  When replacing a gym floor, you’ll also want to consider what sports will primarily be played on your floor before choosing the surface.  The recommended hardwood floor standards indicate that the sliding coefficient value should be between 80 and 110 for sports like:

  • Basketball
  • Volleyball
  • Handball
  • Indoor soccer.

Easier on the Player’s Joints

Just like traction, the right amount of shock absorption is critical for a quality hardwood floor.  A good sports floor with sufficient shock absorption capabilities helps reduce long-term joint problems in the players who use it.  Quality sports floors offer many health benefits for users of all ages.  Older players will feel less strain on their joints and ligaments. Younger players who are still growing will be much safer.

Basketball is the best example of an indoor sport that can be hard on the joints.  Running into another player, landing poorly, or falling hard can lead to severe injuries among basketball players.  The worst part about this is these injuries are purely incidental.  They also can’t be predicted and can lead to acute problems. Some players risk never fully healing from injuries.

A quality hardwood gym floor should have a shock absorption of at least 10%, and a minimum of 22%, if used for sports that are played on a high competition level.  Anything under these numbers is considered non-compliant with the ASTM F2772 criteria.  Indeed, gym floor surface is critical for athletes’ safety. But the subflooring also plays a significant part in the floor’s shock absorption capabilities.

More Stability

Another crucial factor that plays into both player safety and performance is vertical deformation. Vertical deformation refers to the floor’s ability to adjust to an athlete’s activities.  For example, how jumping or falling impact the floor.  The higher the quality of the basketball court floor, the better its vertical deformation capabilities will be.  However, more isn’t always better.  The floor must have the right amount of this ability. This all depends on the sports being played. Too much vertical deformation isn’t necessarily a good thing. 

While not enough vertical deformation increases the chance for player injury, too much can significantly affect how the game is played.  According to ASTM’s standards, the maximum vertical deformation of hardwood floors should be five millimeters.

Gym Floors with Reduced Noise Keep Athletes Safe

For some, acoustics are important. A quality gym floor that’s appropriately installed significantly reduces noise compared to regular courts.  Reducing noise will help players focus and help eliminate other distractions in the gym that could lead to accidents.  Besides the floor itself, the architectural design of your sports facility also has a significant impact on athlete safety and gameplay.

Hardwood maple sports floors offer the best performance when it comes to all of the factors mentioned above.  Hardwood maple sports floors also positively impact player performance, such as ball rebound, area deflection, and many other factors affecting the game.

Regular Gym Floor Maintenance Keeps Athlete Safe

Regularly maintaining your hardwood gym floor plays a major role in keeping your players safe. This is why you should mop your floor daily and use cleaning solutions recommended by your manufacturer.  Aside from this, there are quite a few things you can implement in your regular gym floor maintenance routine.  Of course, beyond basic maintenance, we recommend that you screen and recoat your gym floor annually, and sand and refinish it every 10 to 15 years.

Give Your Gym Floor the Best Treatment

If you’re looking to improve your sports facility, but you’re feeling overwhelmed by all of the information on this page, don’t worry — we’re here for you!  We have extensive experience spanning for over a decade and a half and will help you make the best choice for your gym. We’ll ensure that your floor is the best and that it not only performs excellently, but is also safe for all who use it!

Regardless if you just need an annual screen and recoat, or are building an entirely new sports facility, contact us today!  Simply fill out our short online form or call us at (973) 801-7219 to request a proposal or schedule a consultation. We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

hardwood basketball court buckle

Why Would a Hardwood Basketball Court Floor Buckle?

Hardwood floors are built to withstand years of foot traffic and activity.  But, in extreme cases, even resilient gym floors can break down and will need to be fixed or replaced.  One of the most significant signs that your gym floor needs an overhaul is when the floorboards begin to buckle.  In this post, we’ll talk about some of the leading causes that make a hardwood basketball court floor buckle.  We’ll also share some tips on how to maintain your gym floor to prevent it from buckling.

Why do maple sports floors buckle?

Hardwood maple floors are designed to endure continual wear and tear, while offering excellent performance over a significant period.  When properly installed, regularly maintained, and kept under the right conditions, your gym floor can last for over half a century.

However, certain elements can damage your floor to a considerable degree.  An example of this is when floors buckle, pulling the flooring from the subfloor and lifting the floorboards several inches or more.  This is one of the most extreme reactions floor wood can have when exposed to certain conditions.  Below are some of the most significant factors that will cause your floor to buckle.

Humidity

Wood is a naturally porous material.  It can release and absorb a great deal of moisture.  If the humidity levels in your gym are higher than the recommended 35% to 50%, the floor will absorb any excess moisture. This will cause it to expand.  Similarly, if the humidity falls, the floor will release moisture and shrink.  Constant fluctuations in moisture will lead to more rapid decay and extreme reactions, such as floor buckling.  It’s crucial you keep an eye on your AC systems and set them to maintain the recommended indoor humidity at all times.

Water

Unlike humidity, which will slowly get inside your gym floor and cause it to buckle, water exposure will cause your floor to rise and pull apart from each other quickly.  Severe water damage most often comes when the floors are flooded as a result of natural disasters, burst underground pipes, and other occurrences. 

While water damage may not always cause your floor to buckle, buckling is far more likely to happen if the hardwood floor is left submerged underwater for an extended period.  That is why it’s crucial to remove standing water from the hardwood basketball court floor immediately.  The sooner you clean the mess, the less time the water will have to spread to other areas of the court.  Fast action will also prevent mold from growing in the facility. 

Substandard Installation

Buckling can also appear when the hardwood floor isn’t correctly installed.  If the contractor hasn’t been following the correct installation practices or hasn’t used all of the needed tools, buckling can occur.  Moreover, buckling issues can also happen due to improper construction of the subfloor, subfloor contamination issues, or subfloor separation issues.  In such cases, you might be able to repair your existing floor and save money otherwise spent on a complete revamp. 

Poor Care

Proper maintenance is one of the key factors for preserving your gym floor for many years. Unfortunately, a significant percentage of gym owners forgo regular maintenance.  The most important thing to keep in mind is that you should only use the cleaning products intended for your type of floor.  Other products may damage it.  Sweep the floor daily, keep the water off the floor surface, and ensure your ventilating systems are always working properly.  For more tips on proper gym floor care, read our guide to gym floor maintenance.

How to Fix Your Buckling Gym Floor

How you approach fixing your gym floor will primarily depend on what caused it to buckle.  If the problem came as a result of increased humidity inside of your facility, it would be relatively easy to fix.  In the event that the issue was caused by a water leak or due to poor installation, repairing it would require more time and resources.  This is because such situations will require a complete sports floor replacement.

Of course, even with proper maintenance, the time will come when you will have to replace your gym floor.  If more than half of your gym floor is damaged by water or moisture, it’s better to replace the entire surface than to spot repair the damage.  Also, if the floor hasn’t buckled much, but is old and no longer providing optimal user performance, it’s time to consider installing a new floor.

Basketball Court Floor Buckling: A Quick Sum Up

Hardwood gym floors are extremely durable and will last for decades when maintained properly. But, when exposed to water damage, moisture, and humidity, they might start buckling and cupping.  If you notice these issues while they’re still in the early stages, you might be able to localize the damage and avoid replacing the entire floor. 

In the case that your floor has been exposed to excessive amounts of water, the best way to fix it is to contact a certified gym floor company.  They’ll provide you with a quick and accurate assessment of your hardwood floor, and react quickly to minimize the damage.

As a full-service gym floor contractor, J&J Gym Floors has provided our services to thousands of clients who have needed their gym floors repaired or replaced.  We specialize in repairing basketball courts damaged by buckling, providing clients with gym floors they’re proud to use. 

Replacing or repairing your gym floor can also be an opportunity to change up the logos, add a new design, or replace some of the letters.  If you need help in determining the overall condition of your gym floor, don’t hesitate to reach out to us!  Just fill out our simple online form and schedule your consultation or request a proposal.

preparing for hardwood gym floor installation

Preparing for Hardwood Gym Floor installation in 3 Easy Steps

So, you’ve made plans to brighten up your sports facility by installing a new hardwood floor. Maybe you want to add a basketball or volleyball court to your existing sports complex.  You’ve picked a contractor, agreed on all of the essential details, and have chosen the perfect maple hardwood design for your new floor.  But you’re still unsure how the project will unfold from concrete to court.

This is relatively common as a lot of gym owners are not familiar with the process of preparing for a hardwood gym floor installation.  If you’re one of them, you’ve come to the right place!  In this article, we’ll go over the three most important steps you should know before and during the installation of your new hardwood gym floor.

Testing the Concrete Slab before hardwood gym floor installation

Regardless if you’re replacing your existing hardwood floor or installing one in a brand new building, your concrete slab must meet certain criteria.  Meeting the requirements will ensure a successful hardwood floor installation.  Before installing the floor, the contractors should run tests to make sure that the concrete slab is dry, smooth, and flat.

All three requirements are equally important and your contractor shouldn’t miss out on testing any of them.  This is why you shouldn’t stay in the dark during the process, and why we will look a bit deeper into each of the three categories.

Dryness

As we talked about in one of our previous posts, moisture is the worst enemy of hardwood floors.  Gym floors are susceptible to water, as it can lead to many issues, such as cupping and buckling.  To avoid potential water damage, the concrete must be dry before installing a new hardwood floor.  The slab should be poured at least 60 days before the dryness tests, and it’s relevant to know just how much concrete has been placed to calculate the most accurate test results.

The process is something you shouldn’t rush as it can have a significant impact on floor performance later.  Furthermore, you should consider using a third party to perform a test.  This can act as an insurance policy on whether the concrete slab meets the expectations and standards to receive a new hardwood installation. 

Once the 60 days have passed after pouring the slab, you can perform the dryness test.  The dryness test consists of two different components — a relative humidity test and a calcium chloride test.  The relative humidity test measures the humidity levels in the concrete.  In contrast, the calcium chloride test measures the amount of moisture that passes through the concrete slab.

Flatness

If you’re looking for maximum floor performance, flatness is something you definitely shouldn’t overlook. The MFMA rules for concrete slab flatness clearly define the appropriate requirements.  If the hardwood is installed over a concrete floor that isn’t flat, there could be ball bounce and vibration problems, and even dead spots.  Moreover, an uneven floor will not only have performance issues but will also look odd.  As the contour of the hardwood floor follows that of the slab, if the concrete isn’t flat, the hardwood will seem like it’s improperly installed.

Softness

Last but not least, the concrete should be soft enough — but not too soft.  The concrete strength should range between 3,000 P.S.I. and 3,500 P.S.I, with all high spots being ground level. Overly-soft concrete is more expensive to polish and grind and has a lower compressive strength.  Many factors can lead to overly-soft concrete, with excess water being the biggest culprit.

Ensuring Optimum Surrounding Conditions

While the concrete slab is the most crucial aspect of preparing a facility for a new hardwood floor, the environment around it also plays a vital role.  The recommended relative indoor humidity should be between 30% and 50%, and the temperature should be between 55 and 75 degrees.  These are the optimal environmental conditions for the best hardwood performance.

With that said, it might not always be possible to maintain the recommended conditions, especially if you live in a part of the country that experiences extreme summer or winter seasons.  These recommended numbers can fluctuate for about 15% up or down, and still not have a harmful effect on the floor.

However, if there’s a fluctuation in indoor humidity higher than 15%, the floor might start to shrink or expand excessively.  It is important to note that you should also have proper air circulation during the installation process, not only after the floor is installed.  If your HVAC system is not yet set up, there are a few other things you can implement; fans, humidifiers, and dehumidifiers can be of great use.

You’ll also need to remember the floor installation should be completed after all other work in the gym is finished.  This includes all mechanical, lightning, and paint jobs.  Completing these assignments before installing a new hardwood gym floor will help you avoid any potential damage to the new floor.  It will also allow you to see how the color and lighting impact the final appearance of the hardwood floor.

Finding a Reliable Contractor for hardwood gym floor installation

Preparing for a new hardwood gym floor doesn’t have to be a mind-boggling experience, but you must know all of the steps that go into it.  Of course, it’s also vital to pick a reliable and trustworthy contractor for your project.  An experienced flooring contractor will know how to guide you through this journey and explain everything as they carry out the project. 

Ultimately, you’ll be the one using the gym for decades to come.  So you want to make sure that you get what you pay for.  If you have any more questions about the process or want to schedule a consultation for your project, we’re here for you. Simply fill out our easy online form. Or call us at (973) 801-7219, and our customer support representatives will reach out to you as soon as possible.

basketball court floor performance

Top 5 Hardwood Basketball Court Floor Performance Features

Gym flooring can have a significant impact on athletes’ performances and the overall well-being and experience of the people who use the facility.  Whether you run a professional sports arena, a high school gym, or a sports facility for recreational users, you should have a safe, high-performance floor.  There are countless benefits of using maple gym floors. In this post, we’re going to shine a light on the most important ones. Without further ado, let’s take a look at the five key hardwood basketball court floor performance features.

Shock Absorption

Shock absorption is a major contributor to performance. It also significantly impacts player success on the court. Hardwood maple is one of the most durable materials you can use for your gym floor. Maple hardwood floors also offer the best shock absorption. This makes them an excellent choice for basketball courts, and for various other sports like volleyball, handball, and racquetball.

One could argue that better shock absorption doesn’t contribute to injury prevention. There is also evidence that more shock absorption means less fatigue for the players.  The lower-extremity joints are under less stress, making hardwood floors less taxing on the player’s body.

We should also mention that hardwood floors that serve to accommodate only one type of activity should provide consistent shock absorption throughout the entire surface if you’re aiming for maximum performance.  To ensure consistent shock absorption, you should choose the right type of material for the particular activity and have a high-quality subfloor installed.

Vertical Deflection

Vertical deflection is closely tied with shock absorption, as the higher the level of shock absorption is, the more vertical deflection there will be.  In layman’s terms, vertical deflection is the floor’s downward movement during the user’s point of impact.  For example, when jumping on a concrete floor, the player feels zero deflection.  On the other hand, synthetic and rubber flooring materials have a high vertical deflection percentage. 

In this context, the maple hardwood floor offers the best performance.  This especially comes into play in activities where lower-extremity joint stability is critical.  Vertical deflection helps increase foot stability, which is crucial in fast-paced sports that require a lot of jumping, such as basketball and volleyball.  However, if excessive, vertical deflection can have a counter effect and cause the player to be slower and more unstable on the court.

Area Deflection

Unlike vertical deflection, which is measured at the point of impact, area deflection is a measurement that reflects energy dispersal throughout the hardwood floor.  It serves to show the floor’s ability to contain the area under the player’s impact and is assessed under the MFMA PUR Standards.

Generally speaking, maple hardwood floors with a sound subfloor system provide a wider area of deflection compared to other surfaces.  In comparison, synthetic sports floors still provide shock absorption but have a much narrower field of deflection.  However, the specific area deflections of hardwood floors can be customized and depend on the preferences of coaches and players.

Friction

Surface friction is one of those performance-affecting features that have to be just perfect.  Not having enough friction will lead to players sliding all over the court and losing control, possibly hurting themselves.  In contrast, if the surface of your floor possesses excessive friction, it can impede the player’s movement and affect the way they play.  This is especially important for sports such as basketball, which requires the right balance of surface friction.

One of the most significant factors that determine surface friction is the finish on the floor.  A high-performance maple hardwood floor should meet the MFMA Standards mentioned above and fall under the recommended friction standards.

Ball Bounce

Basketball bounce or ball rebound measurements are crucial when testing the floor’s quality. Maple hardwood floors also come out on top when it comes to this aspect.  Unlike most of the other softer materials that provide lower ball bounce, hardwood floors provide ideal ball bounce conditions for indoor sports activities.

In the context of basketball, how well a ball bounces is a crucial factor in how the game is played, and how the players will perform.  It is precisely for this reason that basketballs are always used when testing ball bounce performance.

Basketball bounce tests serve as an excellent base value for determining the performance of other balls on the court.  While the rebound numbers can vary based on other factors, such as shock absorption, there are clear rules for ball bounce percentages.  For maple hardwood floors, ball bounce measurements should always be around 93% at a minimum.

The Importance of Proper Maintenance

To enjoy all of these performance benefits a hardwood basketball court floor has to offer, it’s crucial that you properly maintain your hardwood floor. Be sure to sweep the floor daily and always take care of it according to the manufacturer’s specifications.  Maintain a stable relative humidity every day, and never turn off your AC for prolonged periods.  Also, keep any water off the surface and immediately remove any liquids if they get spilled on the hardwood.

We’ve covered the topic of hardwood maintenance in more detail in one of our previous posts. Make sure to go through it and learn all of the important cleaning practices that will help extend the life of your gym floor.  Aside from these day-to-day activities, you shouldn’t skip on bigger upkeep projects.  This includes screening and recoating your hardwood floor on an annual basis to ensure maximum protection and performance.

Hardwood Basketball Court Floor Performance: A Takeaway

Is your gym floor due for a sanding and refinishing job, or for its annual screening and recoating?  Maybe you just want to add new lines, graphics, or repaint the logo and breathe new life into the floor.  Whether you’re entirely refurbishing your gym floor or just looking to do some maintenance work, we’ve got you covered! Simply fill out our online form and schedule a consultation for your project today.

gym floor insurance

How to Handle Gym Floor Insurance Claims When Disaster Strikes

In the US, especially on the East Coast, hurricanes and severe storms damage dozens, if not hundreds, of gymnasiums and sports halls every year.  Damage from such disasters comes in all shapes and sizes.  Hardwood gym floors are the most vulnerable and often require a complete revamp after these catastrophes.

What can you do if a hurricane, flood, or other natural disaster damages your gym floor?  The best way to avoid costly out-of-pocket repairs is to get a good insurance policy and become familiar with how to file claims when the time comes.  Continue reading to find out how to handle gym floor insurance claims when disaster strikes.

What is Gym Insurance?

There are many types of gym insurance.  But in this instance, we’re most interested in building property insurance.  It covers the space where the gym is located and is usually combined with business property insurance, which protects the entire building complex.

The most important thing to know is gym insurance can have a lot of exclusions.  That’s why you should sift through your policy before signing it ans make sure it covers everything you need.  Include all essential business contents in the policy, such as mats, training tools and equipment, and other surrounding units.  If a natural disaster comes your way, you’ll have peace of mind knowing your policy will cover the biggest chunk of the repair costs.

How to Handle a Gym Floor Insurance Claim

Going through an insurance claim process can be a stressful and arduous journey.  In some cases, getting a claim paid can be challenging, even if you meet all of the criteria in your coverage policy.  Our step-by-step guide on how to handle gym floor insurance below will make the process a little less nerve wracking. 

1.      Prepare

When submitting an insurance claim, you should be ready to answer the many questions that come with it.  The gym insurance provider will want to know details regarding the conditions of your gym, type of activities that you host in it, as well as any additional relevant information.  The insurance company will most often want detailed visual evidence.  So make sure to have before and after pictures.  With this sort of information on hand, it’ll be much easier to get a favorable settlement with the insurance provider.

Aside from preparing as much documentation as possible, you should also prep your building if you know a disaster is imminent.  If you suspect your gym is in the path of a major storm, hurricane, or tornado, move valuable items to higher ground.  Take the necessary steps to protect your gym from the surge of water that’s heading toward it.  It is likely that everything that gets submerged will become moldy.  In many cases, a complete tear-out and replacement of all fixed elements will usually be required.

2.      Hire a Reliable Contractor

Once the storm has passed, the next thing to do is remove all damaged materials and create safe access to the gym.  This should be a top priority once you establish that it’s safe to go back to the facility.  Having a proven gym floor company by your side during these first few steps will make this process much easier.  It will also allow you to assess the damage done to your facility. This is mainly because insurance companies don’t understand the details of gym floor construction.  Insurance companies also aren’t familiar with how water and other elements can damage the floor.

Some insurance companies may even try to salvage the floor and try to push a restoration instead of paying for a new floor.  This is never a good option and can cost you tens of thousands of dollars in the future.  A trustworthy contractor can make a world of difference when it comes to insurance claims.  They’ll negotiate for you and make sure you get the amount you need to renovate your gym floor.

3.      Get the Most Out of Your Insurance Claim

With enough evidence and a reliable gym floor company by your side, you won’t have as much trouble getting your claim approved.  But the process still isn’t finished, even after the insurance provider accepts your claim.  To save money, most insurance companies will try to replace your damaged floor with like-kind products.

In other words, you’ll still get a new hardwood floor, but the quality of the material won’t be the same that was used for the old floor.  You shouldn’t settle for this.  Instead, negotiate with the insurance company and press them to install the same quality floor that was there before. 

Again, this is where a professional gym floor company can be of great use.  They can mediate between the two parties.  They can help both you and the insurance company accurately assess the damage to your floor and subflooring.

How to Handle Gym Floor Insurance Claims: A Takeaway

To sum it up, dealing with insurance companies is a hassle.  But with enough preparation and a professional partner by your side, you can come out on top.  We understand that getting your gym back in shape after a disaster is very important.  That’s why our skilled and professional staff will work closely with insurance adjusters to ensure that you get the right pricing that will cover all repairs and replacements.

If you have any questions, want to schedule a consultation or request a proposal, call us today at (973) 801-7219.  You can also fill out our quick online form, and we’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

wood gym floor

When Should I Replace My Wood Gym Floor?

Completely replacing a wood gym floor is a costly project and one that’s only carried out every few decades.  That is why it’s important to do a proper job and give your gym floor the best treatment.  A beautiful, newly installed gym floor will look impeccable and also ensure athletes’ safety.  In this post, we’ll provide advice on when you should consider replacing your wood gym floor.  We’ll also explore some other important factors to consider during the process, so you can make an informed decision that fits your facility’s needs and your budget.

How to Know if it’s Time to Replace Your Hardwood Floor

A properly installed hardwood floor can last up to half a century if adequately maintained. Sanding and refinishing your wood gym floor can help brighten up your gym and strengthen your old and worn out floor.  In addition, screening and recoating your athletic hardwood floor annually will also significantly contribute to its longevity.  Not only will these maintenance activities make your floor more visually appealing, but they will also help provide added protection for the floor, athletes, and spectators.

But even with dedicated maintenance, your gym floor will start to show signs of wear and tear over time.  There are a few signs that indicate your floor is due for a makeover.  The floorboards may begin to feel slippery, and the wood may crack in places.

These issues go much beyond cosmetics and could be dangerous for people using your facility. You always want your athletes playing on a gym floor that’s safe to use and durable.  Old gym floors can also affect performance.  For instance, humid gym floors and those with dead spots can cause a loss of momentum when the ball is dropped.  This is one of the telltale signs that it’s time to replace your wood gym floor.

How Much Does a Quality Gym Floor Cost?

As a gym floor owner looking to replace your old gym floor, you’re very mindful of your budget and want to get the best value for the money you’re investing.  With that in mind, wood floors offer the best life expectancy, albeit at a slightly higher initial price.  New gym floor installation prices differ from facility to facility, as they depend on a variety of aspects.  Gym floor installation prices are often formed per square foot, with several other factors in consideration.  Factors that have the most significant impact on your gym floor pricing include:

  • The size of your gym floor
  • Location of your sports facility
  • Materials used
  • Design of graphics, the amount of paint required for logos, game letters, etc.

Crucial Things to Consider When Replacing Your Gym Floor

Installing a new floor is a project you don’t take on often.  Therefore, it is vital to take into consideration all of the significant aspects that go into such an undertaking.  Below are some of the most important things to keep in mind when replacing your gym floor. 

Purpose of the Floor

Consider the type of sports activity that will be carried out on your floor.  For example, if you’re looking to replace the basketball court floor, you would go about it in a different way than if you’re replacing an all-purpose gym floor.  If you own a facility with an all-purpose hardwood floor, such as a school gym, you’ll also need to consider the various school activities and events that are held, and the wear and tear they can cause.  Other factors, such as whether the bleachers and backstops will have to be rolled, or whether the floor will have to endure heavy hard-sole foot traffic, should all take part in the decision-making process.

Consider the Environment and Sustainability

Does an HVAC system control your gym’s indoor environment?  Is the gym floor located near a natatorium or below grade?  Is it a new construction or a retrofit?  All of these aspects play into determining how much moisture your hardwood floor will potentially encounter.  Your hardwood will expand as it contracts moisture and contract when it dries out.  Significant changes in moisture and temperature can cause your gym floor to crack and underperform.

Maintenance Expectations

Before you go all in and invest in a new wood gym floor, make sure that you’re prepared to take all of the steps to maintain it properly.  While proper maintenance might seem like a no-brainer, most facilities and organizations actually don’t have maintenance budgets big enough to support regular cleaning with recommended solutions, sanding, refinishing, and recoating services.  And, without sanding, refinishing, and annual screening and recoating, the hardwood will start to show its age more quickly.  It’s essential to consider all of these aspects before you purchase a new gym floor.

Determine Lines and Graphics Upfront

Before you install a new floor, make sure to determine the placement of game lines and graphics upfront.  This is because the best time to apply game lines and floor graphics is during floor installation.  Doing so allows the best application of a protective coat.  In the same breath, avoid using temporary decals, as they are more slippery and not as safe for the athletes.

Choose the Right Gym Floor Company

Whether you’re looking to upgrade or replace your floor, choosing the right gym floor company can make all the difference.  At J&J Gym Floors, we’ve completed over 17,400 projects since 2003 and have built a reputation as a premier gym floor company in the US. 

Our company’s impeccable track record and superior service are our guarantees for all of our customers.  We provide a full-service approach to gym owners from NJ, NY, CT, PA, DE, and MD.  Contact us online today or call us at (973) 801-7219 and find out how we can help you.

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basketball court paint and stain

Making Bold, Branded Statements with Basketball Court Paint and Stain Patterns

The days of Plain Jane basketball courts are long gone.  You’re not stuck with just alternating maple grades and black block lettering for your basketball court floor.  Today’s sport facility managers have so much more at their disposal to make a bold and branded statement with their gym.  Here’s what you need to know about how basketball court paint and stain patterns can give your gym a look that rival facilities will envy. 

Gym Floor Paint and Stain Patterns: Where Installation and Art Meet

Not long ago, gym floor contractors were known solely for their expertise in how to install a high-quality gym floor.  Today, things have changed.  Now, art and creativity have entered the picture.  While NBA floors tend to be more understated, NCAA basketball courts have become bolder and more artistic.  High schools and private sports facilities are catching on to the trend and making their own unique statements with their gym floors. 

 

What type of designs can be made on the gym floor? Not only do sports facility owners have the option of using eye-catching paints for their logos, but they can also choose from different stain grades and patterns to make their facility stand out. The choice is yours. 

It all begins with maple. 

The type of wood used in a sports floor is very different from wood used in a private residence or commercial office space.  While you can have maple wood installed in your kitchen or dining room floor, maple is primarily used in wood basketball court floors. Why? Because maple is not only a durable wood, but it also gives way to foot traffic so that balls bounce. Athletes can jump and turn without injuring themselves. Maple wood is also ideal to work with when it comes to installing, sanding, refinishing, staining, and painting.

Wood sports floors can have three different grades of maple installed. These grades do not indicate quality. What we mean is, a maple that is third grade isn’t worse than a first grade maple plank. The difference between the grades is looks. First grade maple offers a uniform look with minimal knots and swirls. Second grade has some of these differences in the wood’s appearance. And third grade maple offers the most contrast. 

Purchasing a Hardwood Athletic Floor – Maple Grade | Horner Flooring

Image courtesy of Horner Flooring 

Choosing a grade of maple will come down to cost and also the look you want to achieve for your facility. First grade maple will cost more than third grade because it’s tougher to find uniform planks. It’s also more labor intensive to sift through maple wood and find all of the planks that make the first grade cut. You can create beautiful patterns in the wood floor by having different maple grades installed in alternating patterns, like herringbone.  Dance studios may prefer a parquet look to their floor. 

Basketball Court Logo Paint

High schools and universities typically want their school’s logo painted on the gym floor. Private gyms often opt for the corporate logo. Game lines are also painted onto the wood in whichever color the facility owner chooses. Once logos and paint are applied, finishing coats are the next step in the process. This usually includes two or three coats of a urethane seal. 

Depending on the foot traffic, you may need to have the logos and game lines repainted when the floor requires routine sanding and refinishing. If your wood gym floor is due for sanding and refinishing, you can take this as an opportunity to update the look and color scheme of your gym.  Which brings us to our next point — staining designs, patterns, and swirls. 

Using Basketball Court Stains and Finishes for Bold Patterns

The aesthetics of wood basketball courts and gym floors have greatly evolved. You could even say they’ve improved over the years. You aren’t limited to one, uniform stain color for your floor — unless that’s what you want. Instead, you can opt to have different stain colors applied throughout the floor, creating patterns on either side of the game point lines. Different stain colors can be applied to the floor to create pictures and logos if you’d prefer to not use paint for these graphics and desire a more subtle look. 

When can you apply different stains to create a new pattern or logo?

If you’re having a brand new gym floor installed, painted logos and stain patterns can be applied during the installation process. For existing floors, an ideal time would be when the wood is due for routine sanding and refinishing. This process typically needs to take place at least once per year. Gyms that see heavy foot traffic may need to be sanded and recoated twice or more per year. This depends on the unique needs of your facility. 

Refinishing involves sanding all of the old finish and the game lines off the floor. The process gets down to the bare wood. Any damaged maple planks or subfloors can be replaced or repaired. A gym floor contractor will then refinish the wood with a sanding machine. The sanding process requires at least three cuts across the wood with coarse, medium, and fine sandpaper. Then, the floor is cleaned. Any and all sanding dust and grit is removed before stain and paint is applied.  The final step involves at least two coats of sealant to finish off the job and protect the new designs and wood beneath. 

Basketball Court Paint and Stain: A Takeaway Message

Whether your sports floor wood is left bare, painted, or stained with unique patterns, it’ll need a final finishing coat applied before it can be used. High-gloss polyurethane, either water or oil-based, is applied for the final touch. This ensures the floor has the right amount of grip and that users will have traction when they use the floor, preventing falls and injuries.

If you’re interested in having new stain patterns or paint applied to your sports floor, give us a call today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our online form. We’re the leading gym floor installers in the Tri-State New Jersey area. We’ll be happy to assist you with choosing a bold, stunning pattern for your wood basketball court floor.

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new 3 point line restrictions

What are the New 3 Point Line Restrictions in Basketball?

In June 2019, the NCAA voted to move back the 3 point line to the international distance of 22 feet, 1 ¾ inch.  Moving the line by 1 foot, 4 ¾ inches will make a small but noticeable change on how teams will approach the game.  According to the voting committee, the purpose of the new restrictions is to improve offensive spacing and make the game more diverse.  In this blog, we’ll talk about these new restrictions in more detail, who they affect, and how they can change the game going into the future.

Who do the new restrictions apply to?

The NCAA Playing Rules Oversight Panel approved moving the 3 point line in college Division I, II, and III.  The decision to make this change came after the Men’s Basketball Rules Committee received positive feedback from coaches in the 2018 and 2019 National Invitational Tournament, where games were played on an international 3 point distance.  The new rule came into effect immediately for Division I teams. 

As for Divisions II and III, this rule will come to effect starting with the next season.  This was decided to minimize the financial impact that placing new lines on a court can have on teams from lower leagues.  Seeing that the 2020 NCAA tournament was canceled due to safety concerns, teams will have a bit more time to adjust their basketball courts and have everything ready for the next season.

How will the new 3 point line restrictions affect the games?

The 3 point shot has grown immensely in popularity over the past few years.  So much so, that it has made the game less eventful and minimized the contact between players.  It became an almost universal skill, as even front court players have become capable of making baskets from downtown.

With that in mind, while the 3 point line extension won’t make a significant impact for 3 point specialists and the act of shot-making in general, it will have a substantial effect on the offense. It’s just enough to make the shot more challenging, while still keeping it an integral part of the sport.  Wider spacing will allow more freedom for ball handlers to penetrate to the basket.  It also makes room in the paint for players who like to play with their backs to the basket.  Teams can run more efficient inside out offenses, as defending players will have to cover more court when assisting in defensive rotations.

One thing is certain; the new 3 point line restrictions will help shape college basketball in the right direction.  By moving the 3 point line, it will not only make the 3 point shot more challenging, but it will also significantly reshape how teams play.  Unlike some sports, which have been the same for decades, basketball is always evolving.  The new restrictions will certainly make college basketball even more entertaining, and we can’t wait to see all of the ways these new changes will affect the game in seasons to come.

By the Numbers

The 3 point line was adopted in 1989 in college basketball and has been the shot with the highest expected value ever since.  The 3 point shot has been steadily growing in popularity with each passing year, up until the first line extension in 2009.  That offseason, the NCAA moved back the line one foot, to 20 feet, 9 inches.  This is where the line would stand for the next ten years until 2019 and the most recent change.

After the 3 point line extension in 2009, there was a noticeable drop in 3 point performance. College basketball saw the most significant reduction in the history of the shot, with teams attempting 0.8 percent fewer 3 pointers per game and scoring 0.4 percent less.  After this historic drop, the numbers continued to improve with each passing season, as players got used to the new range.  Plus, even during the 2009 season, the 3 point shot remained the shot with the highest expected value, by a significant margin.

It’s expected there will be a nation-wide drop in performance.  That being said, with some fine-tuning and tactical changes heading into next year, most college teams will be able to adjust to the new rule without facing significant performance impacts.

Get Ready for the 2020-2021 Season

The new 3 point line rules have already come into effect for NCAA Division I, while DII and DIII schools have until the 2020-2021 season to make the change on their court.  If you own a gym floor that hosts games for NCAA DI, DII & DIII schools, you should have your lines updated as soon as possible.  And, with the right gym flooring company, this is a simple and straightforward project.  With a lengthy portfolio that includes NCAA teams, as well as organizations and brands such as the New York Yankees, Jets, Nike, and Adidas, we are the most trusted gym floor company in the business.

3 Point Line Restrictions: A Takeaway Message

At J&J Gym Floors, we’ll make sure that everything is on point.  Our skilled and professional staff will provide you with a top-quality painting service, regardless of whether you’re looking for intricate or straightforward floor designs.  By using the right products and applying a quality finish on your gym floor, we’ll ensure the maximum durability of your floor.  Properly painted game lines, logos, and letters will not only look good, but they’ll also last much longer.  More importantly, they’ll protect players from slipping and injuring themselves.Our line painting services, as well as amazing artwork and design services, are all available at affordable prices.  We’re based in Northern New Jersey and provide services to most of NJ, NY, PA, CT, DE, and MD. Contact us today, and we’ll update your court and make everything ready for the 2020-2021 basketball season.

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buying a hardwood gym floor

Top 3 Things to Consider When Buying a Hardwood Gym Floor

The streets to victory are paved in gold.  But when it comes to the Final Four, those victory streets are paved in maple.  To be exact, hardwood northern maple is some of the most durable, beautiful, and commonly-used gym floor material.  The way a gym floor is constructed and finished helps maintain the integrity of the wood. It also provides athletes with traction and give to protect their joints and lower back from strain.  If your sports facility is in the market for a new hardwood gym floor, there are a lot of things to consider during the buying process. Below, we’ll break down the top three things you need to think about when buying a new hardwood sports floor. 

1. The Sports Facility Environment

Wood, especially the type used in a sports floor, is sensitive to the ambient temperature and moisture levels in the environment where it’s located.  The overall climate of your sports facility will have an impact on the type of gym floor you decide to purchase. It may be hard to believe in this day and age, but some sports facilities aren’t controlled via an HVAC system. In these instances, wildly fluctuating levels of humidity and temperature throughout the changing of the seasons can have an impact on the health and lifespan of a hardwood gym floor. 

If the gym floor will be located below grade, or near an indoor swimming pool, this will also impact the wood.  Sports facility managers need to understand that the arch-nemesis of your hardwood gym floor is and always will be moisture—either standing moisture in the form of puddles or floods or ambient humidity in the air.  Gym floor owners in the tri-state region of New Jersey, Delaware, and Pennsylvania that we service here at J&J Gym Floors need to keep this in mind.  This is one region of the country that sees wild, seasonal swings in humidity and also has to contend with the freeze/thaw cycle in winter.

New Hardwood Gym Floor Installation: Maple Grade and Subfloors

A hardwood gym floor is made out of different grades of maple.  All wood, including maple, absorbs moisture readily. When the floor absorbs moisture, the wood planks will expand.  As the air becomes drier, the wood will contract as the humidity goes down, and water evaporates. This cycle will continue throughout the floor’s lifespan; however, the cycle is most pronounced immediately after the flooring is installed.  So, why is this an important consideration?

For one thing, a hardwood gym floor installed in a place subject to high humidity levels and temperature swings must have 18-inch expansion gaps placed roughly every two feet between tongue-and-groove planks. Otherwise, the wood boards must be installed with smaller gaps on each side.  But that’s not all. The subfloor is also essential. Subfloors need to allow the wood to expand and contract freely. In most cases, anchored-resilient subfloor systems are a better choice over a floating subfloor design.

A floating subfloor is nailed together and, therefore, fully-integrated.  What this means is that the pads of the subfloor can tear off the substrate as the maple boards naturally expand and contract.  This process can lead to “dead spots” within the floor. Dead spots can severely impact athlete performance because a dribbling basketball won’t bounce very well if it hits a dead spot. 

2. Type of Activities

The type of activities that will take place over the hardwood floor are also an important consideration.  Many multi-purpose facilities and schools will conduct events in the gymnasium that aren’t games, such as school dances, assemblies, and other meetings.  In these instances, a sports facility manager must take into consideration the type of foot traffic that will happen over the hardwood. Gyms that will only see traffic from sports sneakers and bouncing balls will need different installations than gym floors that will contend with high heels and the scraping of chair and table legs. 

Other types of activity that may impact the final purchasing decision include:

  • Bleacher installation and movement
  • Portable backdrop movements
  • Scissor lifts used for fixing lights
  • Rolling vehicles used or displayed in the gym

A new hardwood gym floor may need to withstand significant rolling load weights.  The probability of these activities taking place on the floor will also impact the subfloor installation. For gyms that will see heavy loads, a subfloor may need to have solid-block construction installed where a large rolling load will rest.  Some activities will also impact the final surface product, like edge-grain parquet maple. Edge-grain parquet maple is particularly resilient to rolling pressures, unlike the usual strip maple installed in a hardwood gym floor

3. Maple Grade

The maple grade you choose will mostly come down to aesthetic concerns—structural considerations aside. 

  • First-grade maple gives the floor a monochromatic and sleek look. 
  • Second-grade maple flooring for sports facilities offers a compromise between these two looks. 
  • Third-grade maple offers a more rustic appearance, with its signature mineral stains and knots.

The majority of sports floors are made out of second-grade maple.  Even though third-grade maple is lower-cost and traditionally considered less-desirable than first-grade, many sports facility managers prefer the rougher, less-uniform look that third-grade maple offers. Regardless, each grade of maple flooring possesses the same levels of durability, performance, and lifespan with regular maintenance

Hardwood Gym Floor Purchase: A Final Takeaway

If you have an old gym floor that needs replacing, a qualified gym floor installer will inspect the substrate, subfloor, and condition of the old wood.  Some questions they’ll ask are why the facility needs a new floor in the first place. In many cases, moisture has been an issue in the past. 

A gym floor contractor will pinpoint the source of moisture problems and take steps to educate the facility owner and remedy the situation.  That way, those moisture issues won’t jeopardize the health of your new gym floor. Contact our experienced gym floor contractors at J&J Gym Floors today at (973) 801-7219 to request a proposal on a new hardwood gym floor.

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gym floor faqs

Gym Floor FAQs: Your Top 5 Questions Answered

Are you the proud owner or manager of a sports facility?  If so, it’s probably safe to say that the hardwood maple gym floor is most likely your biggest investment.  Not only that, but the gym floor sees the highest amount of foot traffic in the facility. Caring and maintaining a gym floor is incredibly important.  Not only will it protect your bottom line, but it will also ensure that your facility appears professional. A gym floor maintained in pristine condition also protects users from injury.   So what exactly goes into maintaining and caring for a sports floor? Find the answers to your top gym floor FAQs in the article below. 

FAQ #1: What do I do if water damages the gym floor?

Water is the number one enemy of gym floors everywhere.  But if your facility gets flooded, or otherwise experiences some form of water damage, it’s not the end of the road for your gym floor.  Wood is an incredibly porous material and will absorb excess water. When this occurs, the wood planks may buckle, crown, or cup.  Removing excess moisture is the first step. 

Be sure to clean and mop any standing water.  Turn on a dehumidifier and set fans around the perimeter of the gym floor to help dry the wood.  It can take as long as two or three weeks for the floor to thoroughly dry and any cupping or buckling to subside.  After the floor dries, it’s a good idea to contact a gym floor repair technician to assess the damage and determine if patching the damaged parts of the floor is necessary. 

FAQ #2: Can I put tape on a hardwood sports floor?

Do you have an impromptu game of pickleball coming up?  Then you might think it’s okay to put temporary lines on the gym floor with tape.  After all, It’s just tape. What could possibly go wrong? Unfortunately, applying painter’s tape to the gym floor can damage the floor and result in costly repairs. 

A hardwood sports floor must have a finishing coat applied to it before it is ready for use.  This substance not only protects the wood beneath from scrapes and scratches, but it also creates stickiness and traction to the floor.  That stickiness and traction is important for athletes to keep them from slipping and injuring themselves. 

Putting tape on the floor and then removing it will tear away the finishing coat.  This leaves the floor weak and vulnerable to damage. It also increases the risk of an athlete slipping and falling. 

There may come a time in the life of your sports facility when you’ll need to have temporary game lines drawn on the floor.  Tape may seem like the easiest product to use for game lines, but it’s not worth the risk. Instead, you can find products specifically marketed and formulated for making temporary game lines on gym floors.  White shoe polish and children’s tempera paint are also safe alternatives. 

FAQ #3: Is there a difference between sanding and refinishing a gym floor?

The average gym floor that sees a moderate level of foot traffic will need to be sanded once every decade.  When gym floors are sanded, at least three-grit sandpaper is used to remove all of the seal, paint, and finishing coats from the wood.  Repairing a gym floor also requires technicians to sand, repaint, and refinish the area to give the floor a uniform and professional appearance. 

Refinishing a sports floor is not as labor-intensive of a process.  When a gym floor is refinished, it is screened and tacked. This process removes the finishing coat but doesn’t sand down to the bare wood.  Then, a coating or two of finish is reapplied to the floor. It is possible to have new paint applied to the floor, but the process itself is not designed to remove painted lines and graphics.  Depending on how much foot traffic the facility sees, the gym floor may need refinishing once a year—sometimes more. 

Why, you ask?  Foot traffic will slowly wear down the finishing coats.  The finish that’s applied to a sports floor is the material that gives shoes their signature squeak during game time.  The squeaking indicates the athlete’s shoes are sticking to the floor, creating traction, and preventing slips and falls.  But that stickiness won’t last forever. Refinishing your gym floor returns the right amount of traction and stickiness to the sports floor for safety purposes and to protect the wood beneath from scrapes and scuffs. 

FAQ #4: How often should I clean the gym floor?

Proper and frequent cleaning will go a long way in maintaining the integrity and appearance of the sports floor while preventing users from injury.  You will need to clean the gym floor every day.  Follow these steps to ensure a clean and well-maintained gym floor:

  • Use a dust mop to sweep the floor once a day for moderate use, and up to three times daily for heavy use.
  • Promptly clean any spills, puddles, and moisture from the floor. 
  • Ensure the HVAC is working correctly and keep humidity levels set to no higher than 50% year-round. 
  • Use an approved floor cleaner with a soft cloth or a dust mop to remove scuff marks. 
  • Be sure to inspect the floor for any shrinkage or tightening of the planks.  During rainy weather, check for water ingress near doors and windows. 
  • Check the expansion voids daily for dirt and debris and clean the area. 

FAQ #5: How can I protect the floor if I need to move heavy items?

Scissor lifts are the main culprit when it comes to sports floor damage from heavy loads.  But, many facilities will need to use scissor lifts to clean and maintain ceilings, light fixtures, and other equipment.  So, what can you do?

When moving heavy equipment across the gym floor, make sure the floor is adequately protected.  Never allow equipment to be moved across the floor that has crowned wheels. Wheels that have center ridges should also be barred from access to the gym.  Crowned wheels and wheels with center ridges will create point loads and damage the wood. 

It’s critical to place protective sheathing onto the floor before a scissor lift or other heavy equipment accesses the gym.  Use sheathing that is 3/4 of an inch thick and comes with overlapping seams. Do not allow the machinery to go outside of the protective sheathing.  Also, don’t let heavy equipment sit out overnight or for days in the gym. 

Gym Floor FAQs: A Final Word

A well-maintained and well-cared for sports floor will last for many years.  Caring for your gym floor the right way will also protect users from slipping and injuring themselves.  If your sports floor has experienced water damage and looks like it’s buckling or cupping, contact us here at J&J Gym Floors at (973) 801-7219 today for a no-obligation consultation.

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basketball floor wood

Choosing a Wood vs. Synthetic Floor for Your Basketball Court or Gym

Gym floors see a lot of foot traffic year-round.  So, they need to be both durable and easy to maintain.  There are several types of gym floors. But the two most common ones are wood and synthetic floors.  Both of these materials have their own unique advantages and disadvantages. And it’s important to know all of their characteristics before having either option installed.  In this blog post, we’ll make a direct comparison between choosing a wood basketball court floor vs. synthetic based on the essential factors.

Wood vs. Synthetic Material for Basketball Court Floors

When it comes to choosing the surface of your new gym floor, you have to think about the life expectancy, durability, maintenance, and the primary purpose of the floor.  And you must incorporate all of these factors and find the best solution according to your budget. We all know that generally, wood floors are more expensive than synthetic floors.  However, wood floors do come with better quality and are more aesthetically pleasing. That’s especially true on a large surface such as a gym or basketball court floor. Let’s take a look at some of the crucial factors to keep in mind when choosing to have a wood basketball court floor vs. synthetic material installed.  

Installation Cost

While some organizations don’t have to worry about this aspect, the installation cost is often the deciding factor for many gym owners, which is why we’re starting here.  As we previously mentioned, hardwood floors come with a higher installation cost compared to synthetic floors, due to the expense of the material itself. Synthetic options are generally more affordable, though the price will always depend on the size of the job and the market in general.

With these factors in mind, if you have the budget to afford a wood floor, you might want to go for this option.  Yes, the price is a bit steeper. But no other material can replace the image of top-quality, gleaming hardwood on a basketball court. 

Maintenance

A lot of facility operators think that they can save on maintenance costs when opting for a synthetic floor.  While synthetic floors may be a bit easier to maintain compared to wood floors, they still have specific maintenance needs.  This includes using an auto scrubber and a manufacturer-specified cleaning product. These types of floors should be scrubbed weekly, biweekly, or quarterly depending on how much foot traffic they get.

While synthetic floors are more straightforward to maintain, its key areas tend to show wear and tear more quickly compared to wood floors.  For example, synthetic basketball courts will first wear out around the low block, free-throw line, and three-point line. This will require you to recoat the floor to restore its appearance.

On the other hand, due to its porous nature, wood has different maintenance needs compared to synthetic material.  You should clean any spills and moisture immediately.  Because wood is very absorbent, you should also pay additional attention to the indoor humidity of your gym and maintain between 30% and 50% utilizing your HVAC systems.

Keeping the moisture levels at a consistent percentage can significantly impact the longevity of your wood floor.  Take into account that hardwood gym floors also require annual screening and recoating to ensure longevity.

Life Expectancy

Life expectancy is where the quality and endurance of wood flooring really shines.  Wood floors can last 50 or more years if properly maintained — much longer than synthetic floors.  The latter have a significantly shorter lifespan, as a properly-maintained synthetic floor can only last from 10 to 30 years at the most.  Aside from this, since wood can be refurbished when damaged or worn, it doesn’t need to be entirely replaced, unlike synthetic flooring. This brings us to the next talking point.

Refurbishment and Replacement Costs

Unlike wood floors, synthetic floors can’t be refurbished or repaired.  This means that every time your synthetic floor gets damaged, you’ll have to replace the entire surface.  If you opt for a wood floor, you don’t have to worry about this, as you can always strip down to bare wood, add the lines and logos, apply the seal and finish, and your gym floor will be as good as new.

Refurbishing can save you a lot of money in the long run.  Gym floor resurfacing can be completed for a fraction of the cost of having a new basketball court floor installed.  A general sanding and refinishing job can provide your wood floor with new life and brighten up your gym. Sanding and refinishing is also a very cost-effective way of repainting your wood floor if you choose to redesign it.

Durability

If you’re looking to install indoor basketball floor wood, volleyball floor wood, or any floor that would be used for just one type of activity, you’re on the right track.  Installing a wood floor will allow you to enjoy the best quality without having to worry about damage from footwear. On the other hand, if you need an all-purpose gym floor, synthetic floors might be the way to go.

Why?  Synthetic floors are more versatile in the sense that they can endure all types of shoes and foot traffic.  Also, synthetic materials won’t scratch as easily as wood floors. Synthetic gym floor material will be more forgiving if you plan on using your court or sports facility for various events and activities that might include participants walking or jumping in hard-soled shoes and heels.

Contact the Pros for a New Basketball Court

The installation process for wood floors is a bit more complicated than the process involved in synthetic floor installation.  But in many cases, wood is the better choice. Plus, with the right gym floor company, the entire installation process can be completed quickly and efficiently. Natural wood floors are simply the top-quality option for your sports facility.  They not only last longer but also look polished and classic. If you want to schedule a consultation for your gym floor project, request a new proposal, or if you just have a general inquiry about our services, feel free to contact us at any time.

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hardwood gym floor cleaner

Hardwood Gym Floor Cleaner for Covid-19: What to Use and How Often

A gym floor is the central point for every school or sports facility.  Due to the coronavirus outbreak, people are focused on the safest way to disinfect their gym floors. We’re an experienced company that provides top quality services to some of the biggest businesses in the New Jersey area. We find it necessary to share with you  on how to prevent the virus from spreading in your gym. In this post, we’ll cover some of the best gym floor maintenance measures against the coronavirus. We’ll also share with you some additional tips on how you can properly maintain your gym floor year-round with the right hardwood gym floor cleaner.

COVID-19 and Gym Floors: What are the Risks?

The Covid-19 crisis is still in the early stages of the pandemic. So, we currently don’t know that much about the virus or how to protect against it. It’s critical to know the correct information on how to contain the spread of the virus.

We know that sweat cannot transmit the coronavirus. But high-contact surfaces can potentially be a problem.  With indoor ball sports or any other close-contact activities, the virus can spread quickly. The germs can also remain on surfaces for several days.

How to Disinfect Gym Floors Against Coronavirus

Most schools, gyms, and sports arenas in the US have shut down over the past couple of weeks. Or are planning to shut down soon.  While this will slow the outbreak, it’s crucial to implement specific measures, ensuring virus doesn’t spread when things go back to normal. Regular hardwood cleaning should be done with mild cleaners that can’t damage the finish or the wood.

When it comes to the frequency of disinfecting activities, it all depends on how much foot traffic your gym floor sees. If you’ve a high-traffic surface, you should consider cleaning your floor once, or twice a day. It’s important to pick the right cleaning solution to avoid further damage.  We’ll discuss this next.

Bona Recommended Wooden Gym Floor Maintenance March 2020

When cleaning any type of ball or gym equipment, don’t just use any type of cleaner you find.  Never use household cleaning products on your gym floor. These products can harm the floor finish and may make it slippery, which is a tripping hazard.

Only a few disinfectants have been proven to eliminate the Novel Coronavirus.  Make sure to use an EPA-approved disinfectant and apply it appropriately.  After cleaning your hardwood with an EPA-approved disinfectants, rinse the surface and clean it with a pH-neutral cleaner.  You should do this immediately after cleaning your hardwood floor. Disinfectants can eat away at the gloss level if left on for too long.  We recommend you use the Bona SuperCourt Hardwood Gym Floor Cleaner or the Bona Deep Clean Solution.  

Both of these can be used with an auto scrubber and a clean, white polishing pad, or a microfiber cleaning pad.  We recommend you use an auto scrubber, as it will remove any residue and cleaning solution from the floor.  Keep in mind, these two recommended products are not disinfectants. Instead, they’re used to clean the gym floor from any residue without affecting the gloss level or coefficient of friction.

Additional Tips for Proper Maintenance

Aside from the current focus on how to most efficiently maintain your gym floor to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, there are many other day-to-day activities you should do to give your gym floor the best care possible.  As we previously mentioned, correctly applying the appropriate solution will make your floor clean, durable, and safe for facility users. Although scratches and scuffs can’t be avoided, having a proper care regimen will keep your gym floor safe and looking good.  Below are two additional things to keep in mind for proper gym floor care. 

Ventilation

The ventilation, or air conditioning systems in your gym, must be working properly and maintain a relative air humidity between 35% and 50%.  Also, in light of the current situation, make sure that you don’t leave the ventilation off for a prolonged period of time. Good air circulation and proper ventilation will not only improve the quality of the air but can also help prevent the potential spread of germs by maintaining healthy indoor air quality.

Regular Floor Upkeep

Due to being very porous, wood can absorb as well as release a lot of moisture.  That’s why it’s crucial to keep water off the floor surface, particularly around high-traffic areas such as exterior doorways. If any liquid spills on the floor, make sure to immediately remove any traces of it before it seeps into the wood.  Aside from this, you should sweep the floor daily with a properly treated dust mop. This will keep the floor clean from any abrasive particles, dirt, or dust. While the time will come to recoat your gym floor, with regular care and maintenance, you can delay how long your floor can go between screening and recoating.

Give Your Gym Floor the Best Treatment

Installing new gym floors, or sanding and refinishing your current floor can be a big investment, especially if you’re working on a tight budget.  Proper gym floor maintenance will not only help you prevent the spread of viruses like COVID-19 on your property, but it can also significantly extend the life expectancy of your hardwood floor.  If you have any questions regarding gym floor maintenance or wish to schedule a consultation for your gym floor project, feel free to reach out to us by filling out our quick contact form directly on our site.

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what are gym floors made of

What are Gym floors made of?

Almost exclusively, maple is the go-to wood used for gym floors, dance studios, and stages.  For decades, maple flooring has been the standard used for sports floor construction.  But why? Indeed, there are many different species of hardwoods that are just as durable and aesthetically-pleasing as maple.  The difference is, maple also offers shock absorption, unlike most other types of woods.

For this reason, maple wood is the safest flooring material to use for gyms and other athletic facilities.  It’s durable, widely available, and flexible enough to withstand high-intensity foot traffic. Below, we’ll explore in more detail what gym floors are made of and why. 

The Janka Hardness Rating: What gym floors are made of

In 1906, an Austrian wood researcher named Gabriel Janka invented a scale for measuring the hardness of wood species.  The American Society for Testing and Materials, or ASTM, further standardized the Janka scale.  The scale is still used today to determine the durability of one wood over another. 

The room where a particular type of hardwood floor will be installed will ultimately determine its required place on the Janka scale.  Rooms with higher foot traffic will need a harder wood. For gyms, especially, a wood that scores highly on the Janka scale is critical. 

The scale runs from zero to 4000.  No wood on earth scores zero, and neither does a wood score as highly as 4000.  Balsa wood is the softest wood and scores a 100 on the Janka scale. It’s mainly used to make crafts.  But the harder and tougher a wood, the more difficult it is to saw.

Where the wood falls on the scale is determined by a test that measures the PSI of how much pressure it takes to push a steel ball halfway through a wood plank.  Maple scores 1450 on the scale. In contrast, Douglas Fir, another popular flooring choice, scores 600, whereas Brazilian Cherry scores 2350. Where a wood species falls on the Janka scale will not have any impact on its price.

Why is the Janka scale relevant when it comes to installing sports floors?  A plank of wood like maple that scores highly on the scale won’t scratch, dent, or chip very easily.  But at the same time, maple is flexible enough to withstand foot traffic and also make athletic activities safer for game players. 

Flexibility and Shock Absorption in Maple Floors

Playing a game on a hard surface with no give can put undue pressure on the joints.  It will also lead to a range of different injuries and low-back issues. For athletes, playing on a floor that is durable yet offers decent shock absorption is crucial for preventing injuries and wear-and-tear on the body.  And maple is a flooring material that delivers on all these fronts. 

For one thing, maple planks respond to people’s steps by bouncing back, ever so slightly, which reduces shock on the spine and knees.  Also, the floor will offer a boost to bouncing balls when the floor responds to the contact. Not only is maple a safer wood to use, but it also contributes to the gameplay. 

A Note on Sub Floors

The type of subfloor installed in a gymnasium will also enhance maple’s ability to absorb shock and flex to the movement of sports players.  For gyms, a subfloor of plywood planks is typically installed over a slab. Then, maple flooring is installed. Although, this is a somewhat simplified version of the process. 

For gymnasiums, though, the plywood subflooring is designed for maximum shock absorption to enhance maple’s flexibility.  Subfloors for dance, yoga studios, or stages will need to have a different subfloor installed. The activity levels and types of the facility will determine the safest and most effective subfloor design to use. 

The Different Grades of Maple a Gym Floor is Made of

There are three different grades of maple that facility owners can choose from:

  • First Grade
  • Second Grade
  • Third Grade 

Mostly, the difference between these three grades of maple flooring comes down to appearances and costs.  The flooring’s grade doesn’t have any bearing on the overall quality of the wood, its durability, or shock absorption. 

First Grade Maple Flooring

First grade maple flooring is the most expensive option.  This grade of wood has a limited supply, and it also requires additional labor to mill and bring to market—unlike the other categories.  First grade maple flooring is virtually free of defects, knots, and other markings. As such, it offers a smoother, more uniform appearance in color and contrast. 

Second Grade Maple Flooring

This grade of flooring allows for some knots and variations in the wood.  But, the knots do not occur on the edges or ends of the planks. It allows for more significant variations in the wood for a lesser cost than first grade maple. 

Third Grade Maple Flooring

Here, there are many marked variations, colors, and contrasts to third grade maple planks. Some people prefer the appearance of third grade maple, in that it could be argued that it’s more rustic and charismatic looking.  Also, the range of variations in the planks will make the finished floor appear darker than either of the other grades of maple. A general rule of thumb is that first grade maple will be the lightest of the categories. 

What are Gym Floors Made of: A Takeaway

Maple flooring is the standard choice for gym floors.  It offers facility owners durability, flex, and superior shock absorption compared to other wood species.  The final decision in choosing the grade of maple will boil down to budgetary considerations, and the look a facility manager would like for their gym. Are you in the market for a new gym floor in the Tri-State, New Jersey area? Contact us at J&J Gym Floors today at (973) 801-7219 for your free, no-obligation quote.

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gym floor construction

Gym Floor Construction Details: What Makes a Sports Floor Different?

In 1891, Springfield College hosted the world’s first basketball game, with two peach baskets mounted to the walls of the court.  The game was a hit, and the official sport of basketball was born. Today, basketball is a multi-billion dollar industry. One particular detail that sports facility managers may not know is that the first game ever played and basketball games played today, are still conducted on the same types of gym floor construction—durable maple flooring. Here’s what you need to know about what makes a sports floor different. 

What is a gym floor made of?

Gym floors are made out of maple planks.  Our Victorian predecessors were correct in using maple wood flooring in the early days of indoor sporting events.  Maple is one of the toughest woods you can use as a flooring material as it can take a good beating. Bowling alleys, and even the pins they use, are often made out of maple.  For an indoor sports floor, maple can withstand all kinds of activity. But a maple sports floor still needs regular maintenance to protect its lifespan. 

Is a maple sports floor different than maple flooring in a house?

The timber industry uses a scale called the Janka scale to measure the toughness of different wood species on a scale from zero (softest) to 4,000 (hardest).  Maple scores some of the highest ratings on the Janka scale, coming in at a hardy 1450. In contrast, white oak wood scores 1360, pine 1225, and Douglas fir 660.  While it’s true that you can use maple hardwood for flooring in the home, maple wood used for residential purposes is a little different than maple planks installed on a gym floor.  In essence, the only similarity between the two is that the wood is the same—maple. The biggest difference between maple sports floors and maple hardwood for a house has to do with the subfloor. 

Maple floors for a Gym vs. a House

One of the main reasons why maple is the go-to for gym floor construction is that it has excellent shock resistance.  A maple floor can easily withstand the pounding of basketballs and athletes’ shoes during a sporting event without enduring a scratch. The subfloor system, installation, and finishing techniques and products used for gym floors are very different. 

Flex in a Gym Floor: Combating Fatigue and Preventing Injury

Some gym floors need the wood to have the ability to flex with athletic activity, and this occurs within the gym subfloor construction.  Although this is unnoticeable, every time your foot hits the floor of a gym, the flooring is constructed to give slightly, allowing your foot to sink into the wood plank before springing back.  That way, the floor absorbs shock. This flexing action is beneficial for athletes and helps prevent injury and wear and tear on joints, muscles, and bones. For this reason, some gym sports floors are referred to as an “orthopedic surface”.  And orthopedic surfaces do not only prevent injury, but they also help combat fatigue. 

Common Gym Subfloors

Some gymnasium subfloors are constructed to reduce shock and protect athletes’ ankles, knees, and back.  Common gym subfloors have round, soft rubber pads installed beneath a plywood subfloor, and then the maple planks are installed overtop.  The rubber pads allow the floor to flex. 

How is a gym floor’s finish different than other types of maple flooring?

The finish on a gym floor differs from the finish used in residential hardwoods.  After the maple planks of a gym floor are sanded down, a sports floor installer will apply two coats of polyurethane sealant to the surface.  The sealant is often shiny, giving the floor a lustrous and crisp appearance.  After the sealant dries, graphics and lines are painted on the floor. Next, finishing coats are applied—usually two or three more coats of urethane.  These finishing coats not only protect the wood and graphics, but they also create a stickiness that helps athletes gain enough traction on the floor to keep from slipping. 

Do sports floors require more maintenance than residential hardwood?

Maple is a durable wood.  But sports floors do require annual screening and recoating to keep the wood, graphics, and painted lines protected.  Also, the stickiness of the finishing coat will decrease with use. When this occurs, the floor becomes slick and slippery.  Screening and recoating are critical for giving athletes traction on the floor which helps to prevent slips, falls, and injuries. 

The amount of traffic and use a sports floor sees will determine how often screening and recoating should occur.  A gymnasium that isn’t used for professional games, and is only used for sporting events may only need screening and recoating once a year. 

Professional gymnasiums may need more frequent screening and recoating.  Gymnasiums that are used frequently for assemblies, concerts, and dances will need to be screened and recoated more than once a year.  Sports floors that endure a lot of foot traffic in shoes other than sneakers, and where tables and chairs are moved over the gym floor, will need more frequent maintenance. 

If your sports floor is in need of a screening and recoating, contact J&J Gym floors today at (973) 801-7219 for a free quote.

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gym floor refinishing or resurfacing

Gym Floor Refinishing or Resurfacing in New Jersey: Which Should You Choose?

Many gym floors see a lot of wear and tear with each passing day.  From standard foot traffic to the demands of hosting tournaments and carrying heavy equipment, it’s no surprise that most gym floors need annual refinishing and full sanding and resurfacing every 7-10 years.  Are you considering improving the look and feel of your gym floor? J&J Gym Floors is the brand to trust for your gym floor refinishing and resurfacing in New Jersey and nearby areas. 

First, what’s the difference between gym floor refinishing and resurfacing?  Although it’s common to find both terms used interchangeably, there is a difference.  Knowing and understanding the differences and similarities between the two terms can help you make an informed decision for your sports facility. 

Refinishing a Gym Floor in New Jersey

When refinishing a gym floor, your contractor will screen or abrade the top layer of the gym floor and add a fresh coat over the wood. This should be done every year as the finish coats wear down over time.

Resurfacing

Resurfacing a gym floor goes beyond improving the aesthetics of the uppermost layer. This process is also referred to as sanding.  Using drum sanders, all of the floor finish is removed down to the bare wood. The focus of a refinishing job is to get the gym floor looking pristine.   

Should you resurface or refinish your New Jersey gym floor?

The decision to refinish or resurface your gym floor ultimately comes down to your budget.  Also, the underlying condition of the sports floor system will have a major impact on your final choice.  With a good understanding of what each option entails, you can make the best possible decision for your sports facility. 

If your floor hasnt been sanded in 10 or more years then you most likely will need to resurface your floor.  This will remove all of the finish and painted lines from the floor along with most scratches and dents.    

Your gym floor should be refinished or recoated every year to remove scuff marks and to restore the shine and traction.   If there are no significant damages to the floor, then some light sanding and a new coat of polyurethane can give you the results you need.  However, your gym floor may need to be resurfaced if all or some of the following conditions apply to it:

Floorboards Need Removing

If your gym’s floorboards have deteriorated, you will need to make repairs or replace part or all of the floor.  This is best done during a resurfacing so the new floor boards will better blend and match with the rest of the floor.

Floorboards are Uneven

Does your gym floor have floorboards that are uneven and will require grinding down to even things out?  In this case, you will need a complete resurfacing and possibly some repairs/replacement. Other issues that require a resurfacing to fix include:

  • Chipping or peeling floor finish
  • Scratches and dents in the wood
  • Missing pieces of wood
  • Water damage and warping

 

What to Expect from a Qualified Contractor Before Refinishing and Resurfacing

A qualified contractor called in for a gym floor refinishing project in New Jersey will first and foremost, take a proper look at the gym floor system to get an adequate idea of its overall condition.  The inspection will go over everything, right down to the concrete level. This process allows the contractor to understand the system installed, as well as the integrity of the system underneath. During this process, the contractor will rule out sports floor damage such as warping, rot, water damage to the gym floor, and more.   

If the floor system is damaged excessively, a complete floor replacement may be recommended.  During the replacement, the contractor can install a new version of the existing floor system, or deploy a more robust gym floor system.  Some of the considerations at this stage include:

  • The level of foot traffic in your gym
  • The types of gym equipment  in your facility
  • Other secondary uses of the gym space

At the end of the refinishing or resurfacing procedure, knowing how to adequately care for your hardwood gym floor is critical.  Maintaining the floor ensures a pristine appearance, increases its lifespan, and also ensures the safety of visitors and athletes. 

Resurfacing vs. Replacing a Gym Floor: Takeaway

With the tips above, it will be easier for you to choose between resurfacing and refinishing when the time comes to refurbish your gym floor.  An investment in your sports floor is an investment for your business and the overall well-being of your customers. You can’t afford to be carefree about your decision because a poorly-maintained gym floor negatively impacts your brand and could lead to a decline in patronage.  In worst-case scenarios, you may be facing a lawsuit if one of your customers gets injured in your gym as a result of a weak floor system.

Are you still unsure about the options, or want to know the cost of refinishing or resurfacing your gym floor in New Jersey?  Then call J&J Gym Floors today at (973) 801-7219 for a no-obligation quote.

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gym floor contractor questions

The Top Questions to Ask Your Gym Floor Contractor in New Jersey

Choosing a gym floor contractor in New Jersey that can get the job done can be stressful and challenging.  A lot is riding on your decision, so you can’t afford to decide on a whim. Your gym’s floor will go a long way in shaping perceptions about your brand and facility.  The state of your gym floor is the first thing your patrons will see when they walk in. It’s best to be as careful as possible with your choice of gym floor contractor.

Are you looking for a gym contractor in New Jersey for sanding and refinishing, screening and recoating, painting game lines, logos, or new gym floor installations?  Here are the top 10 gym floor contractor questions you should ask. With the answers you receive, you can simplify your selection process. 

What types of gym floors can you install and repair?

If you’re looking to install a new gym floor, you probably have some ideas on the look you want for your facility.  Still, it doesn’t hurt to get an expert opinion before you make a decision. During a consultation with a gym floor contractor, find out what gym floor types they can install or work on to ensure they can get your job done correctly. 

Do you have any references?

Always verify the track record of any company you’re considering.  The best gym floor contractors in New Jersey won’t hesitate to show off past completed projects.  There should be a portfolio page on their website, but don’t just take their word for it.  Do your research. What are people on third-party review sites saying about the company?  If other gym owners have only good things to say about the brand, there’s a high chance that you’ll have a positive experience with the company as well. 

Are you certified and insured?

Although you certainly don’t wish for mishaps during your gym floor project, it’s still important to only work with properly insured contractors with the right certifications.  If you choose a company that doesn’t have the proper certifications, you may not be able to file a claim if you’re unhappy with the result. The right insurance policy also protects you against any damages an installer might inadvertently cause during the process. 

Will I be charged for gym floor project estimates?

The biggest gym floor companies in New Jersey will have no problems providing you with a free estimate for your gym floor installation or repair.  But other contractors may charge a fee for project estimates. In some cases, the fee is added to the total cost of the project. Find out ahead of time to avoid any surprises down the line with the final price. 

For hardwood gym floors, what kind of finish will you use?

The two main finishes for hardwood gym sports floors are oil and water-based.  Oil-based finishes may give your floor a slight amber appearance after a while, but water-based finishes remain clear.  The main problem with using the latter option is the fact that it can trigger side bonding. This causes the strips of the wooden flow to bond together, making it hard for the floor to contract or expand in line with the weather conditions.  This type of scenario increases the chances of damage. 

The decision should ultimately come down to you. However, your contractor should be able to give you all the details.  They should also have the capacity to deliver, regardless of what you choose.

Will you offer a warranty?

Many gym floor contractors will offer at least a one-year warranty on the work done on your gym flooring.  Others may provide even more favorable guarantees. Find out the entitlements on offer before you make a decision. 

A caveat, though—be careful to not confuse the contractor’s warranty with the warranty the flooring product manufacturer offers.  It’s good to know who will be responsible for any problems that may arise in the future with your sports floor. 

How long will the project take?

It’s vital to have a good idea of how long it will take to complete your project.  With an estimate, you can make the necessary arrangements for your facility. You’ll know if you’ll have to close your gym for a certain amount of time if it’s already operational.  For new gyms, it’s essential to know when you can realistically expect to open your doors again for customers. Find out the timelines, and add a healthy buffer to account for the unexpected.

Will you paint lines and logos?

The biggest gym floor contractors can paint any team symbol, sponsor logos, or any other graphics you’d like to see on your gym floor.  The lines and logos will also be covered by a protective coat that will ensure the designs don’t fade too quickly. J and J gym floors will provide you with a color rendering of your gym floor prior to the start of the project to make sure the project comes out right.

Will you provide cleaning and maintenance instructions?

The best gym floor contractors will provide you with all you need to take care of your beautiful new floors and make them last longer.  Wooden gym floors especially will have a wide range of care tips you’ll have to apply to avoid damage to the hardwood sports floor.  Ideally, you should already know the maintenance requirements of the gym floor option you choose from the first consultation session with the company.

Top questions to ask your gym floor contractor: A takeaway message.

Gym floor installations or repairs can be costly.  You must take all the necessary precautions to ensure you don’t make any mistakes with your gym floor that you may regret in the future. These gym floor contractor questions will help you make the right decisions for your facility and pocketbook.  Here at J&J Gym Floors, we will answer all of your questions about gym floor care and more. Call us at (973) 801-7219 and see why we’re one of the most trusted gym flooring contractors in New Jersey.

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screening recoating gym floor

Screening and Recoating Gym Floors: Your Top Questions Answered

Screening and recoating a wood gym floor is the most efficient and cost-effective way of keeping the sports facility well-maintained.  With regular cleaning, prompt damage control, and proper maintenance, your wooden sports floor can last up to 50 years or more. There is a large amount of specialized knowledge and expertise that goes into an effective maintenance routine.  That is why it’s best to seek help from a professional gym floor company. On this page, you’ll find the answers to some of the most common questions about screening and recoating gym floors. Let’s start with the most common question.

What is a screen and recoat?

A screen and recoat is when a floor care company slightly abrades the top layer of your gym floor to remove the topical marks from the surface.  Technicians then apply one or several coats of finish to the floor. Screen and recoat processes are used to clean up and protect the floor.  This service not only restores the floor’s shine, but it also revitalizes it and helps it maintain a long lifespan. 

How often should you screen and recoat a gym floor?

Frequency schedules for screening and recoating depend on how heavily your gym floor is used.  Most gym floors require to be screened and recoated once a year—sometimes up to twice a year if there is heavy foot traffic.  In rare cases, you can screen and recoat every other year. It’s best to consult with a professional gym floor coating company to get a precise assessment on how often your gym floor should be screened and recoated. 

How long does it take to screen and recoat a wooden floor?

The screening and recoating process only takes a a day or 2, though the exact time can vary based on the type of coating you select—whether it’s oil-based or water-based.  Depending on the type of coating you choose, the entire screening and recoating treatment can be carried out over a single weekend. After the process is completed, it will take about 5 days before the floor is cured enough for use.

What’s the difference between wet screen and dry screen methods?

The main advantage of dry screen prepping is that it offers the best possible abrasion for ensuring finishing coat adhesion.  Dry screening also produces lighter, brighter floors.  

How do you maintain a wood gym floor day-to-day?

To maintain your gym floor and keep it looking pristine and professional, make sure to sweep it daily with a dry dust mop.  If your gym is used frequently, you may want to consider mopping several times a day between instances of heavy foot traffic and sporting events. 

Always make sure that your air conditioning system is working correctly, too.  This will control the indoor humidity and provide appropriate airflow. The ideal temperature at which you should keep your facility is between 55 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. 

Be sure to remove any debris and fix any water damage as soon as it appears.  Puddles and spills should be cleaned promptly. Check the windows and doors for water ingress. And lastly, consult with your gym floor service company for tips on any additional methods you should implement to best care for your gym floor. 

What’s the difference between water-based and oil-based floor coating?

Both water-based and oil-based coatings offer exceptional durability while also being scratch and scuff-resistant when applied properly.  But, there are some critical differences between these two products. An oil-based coating offers superior gloss in comparison to a water-based coating.  If time plays a crucial role in your choice, a water-based coating allows you to play light sports games on your wood floor just 48 hours after the application of the last coat.  On the other hand, if you choose an oil-based coating, you’ll have to wait five to seven days before you can use the gym. 

Can you use any hardwood floor company to service your sports facility?

While a hardwood flooring company might seem like the right choice for a project like a gym floor screening and recoating, it’s always best to go with a business that narrowly specializes in screening and recoating gym floors.  Why? Because a specialized gym flooring company is licensed, trained, and experienced in all of the procedures that go into servicing a wood sports floor.  Moreover, you can also get a discount on other related services, such as gym floor logos and wall pads. You won’t find these additional and often necessary services with a run-of-the-mill hardwood flooring company. 

When will screening and recoating not work?

While screening and recoating is an excellent way to revitalize your wood floor, there are some cases in which they simply won’t work to turn a worn, old floor new again.  If your gym floor has oxidized or is severely worn down, or if the finish is chipping and peeling this process won’t be enough to bring it back to life. In the same line, if your gym floor has been flooded and water damaged, it will require heavy reparation.

Screening and Recoating Gym Floors: A Final Takeaway

These are just some of the most popular questions sports facility owners and managers have regarding screening and recoating services.  Of course, many other little things go into our screening and recoating process that will help your wood floor stand out.

Are you looking to give your wood floor the best possible treatment?  With over a decade and a half of experience and thousands of satisfied clients, we know gym floors.  If you want to schedule a consultation or have any general inquiries about our services here at J&J Gym Floors, we’re always available to help.  Contact us today at (973) 801-7219 or fill out our simple online form.

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The Difference Between Oil-Based Poly and Water-Based Recoating for Gyms

Choosing the right finish for your hardwood gym floor can be confusing.  There are many different types of recoating finishes on the market that are designed to keep your sports floor looking good and in tip-top shape.  But for the most part, you’ll want to choose between the basics—either an oil-based poly or a water-based sports floor finish. Below, we’ll explore the difference between these two types of recoating substances and which one might be the best choice for your gym.  First, let’s uncover recent changes in the sports floor industry and what that could mean for your facility. 

Recent Changes in the Industry: VOCs vs. Tradition

Many sports facilities take a traditional approach to gym floor finishes and recoating.  The conventional way of recoating a gym floor will give it a golden-yellow glow and hue.  In contrast, the newer style of doing it can make gym floors appear white and almost sterile.  Achieving either aesthetic often comes down to what finishing coat is applied to the sports floor. 

The Traditional, Golden Look for Sports Floors

Getting a sports floor to take on a yellow appearance requires the application of treating the bare, sanded wood with an oil-based poly sealer—usually applied in two coats.  Then, graphics and game lines are drawn once the coats dry and cure. Finally, two more coats of oil-based poly are applied over the top of the game lines and paint for the finishing touch. 

That’s the classic way of doing things when it comes to gym floor coatings and finishes. Oil-based polyurethane coatings are solvent-based.  For the last 30 or so years, this has been the go-to method for refinishing a gym floor.  

Water-Based Recoating for Gym Floors: A Low VOC Method

Many DIY gym floor recoating jobs make use of oil-based finishes that have high levels of VOCs.  However, professional gym floor installers and gym floor coating manufacturers now have a more extensive range of formulations for recoating gym floors at their disposal.  These newer lines of finishes are often water-based, yet still, give sports facility owners more options for the final aesthetic. 

But when it comes to using oil-based finishes, a professional gym floor installer is best equipped to apply these materials safely, more so than a DIY enthusiast. 

Why would someone want to use an oil-based poly for recoating a gym floor?

An oil-based poly offers gym owners many unique benefits, aside from aesthetics. 

  • Durability — An oil-based finish is sturdier than its water-based cousin.   
  • Adheres to the industry standard — Oil-based polyurethane finishes for gym floors are the industry standard.  The look and quality they offer have been used for decades as the go-to for sports floor finishes.  While water-based finishes are gaining market share, they aren’t as recognizable. 
  • Rich color — Unlike a water-based finish, oil-based poly will give the floor a deep rich amber hue.  Maple, the wood used for sports floors, is white with brown undertones. Applying an oil-based finish to the wood will highlight the grain while adding depth to the undertone. 

What are the benefits of using a water-based finish for gym floors?

Other than possessing a low amount of VOCs, water-based recoating has its own set of unique advantages. 

  • Shorter dry-time — Oil-based finishing coats typically require at least 24 hours of dry time between coats.  And the final cure? That can take up to a month in some cases. Otherwise, the finish might mar.  If your facility sees a lot of heavy use, and extended downtime for the gym would devastate your business, you may want to consider using a water-based finish.  Between coats, water-based finishes only need about three hours of dry-time. For the final finish, your gym can be ready for use again within a week. A water-based finish only requires about six to seven days of curing time to be fully dry and free of becoming marred from foot traffic. 
  • Transparency — Water-based coatings go on clear and stay transparent.  Since a water-based finish will allow the natural grain and color of the maple to shine through, this may be ideal for gyms that require the application of colorful graphics, logos, and many painted lines.  Amber tints that occur when oil-based poly is applied may clash with specific logo colors. In some cases, a water-based finish may help your facility appear more professional and polished.
  • Eco-friendliness — Eco-friendliness is becoming more and more important to consumers and gym owners.  Water-based coatings are far more gentle on the environment than their oil-based counterparts.  Manufacturers are responding in kind to these consumer sentiments with water-based coatings that are recyclable and long-lasting.  A product with a longer shelf life reduces waste. 

Oil-Based vs. Water-Based Recoatings for Gyms: A Takeaway Message

Today’s sports facility owners are fortunate in that they have far more options when it comes to picking the right recoating material for their gym.  You do not have to sacrifice durability for environmental sensibilities with water-based recoatings. But a water-based recoating won’t give the floor a warm tone, and it may require you to have the floor serviced more frequently. 

So, which one is best for your wood gym floor?  We’ll be happy to help you decide. Contact J&J Gym Floors today at (973) 801-7219 to explore your options.

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de-escalation room padding

De-Escalation Room Padding: Where Technology and Calm Meet

Sometimes, we all need a time-out.  Today’s world is full of stimuli, 24-hour bright lights, noise, and rushed deadlines.  But for those with special needs, it can be difficult for them to express their stress and fear before they reach their breaking point.  Young children are also learning how to calm themselves down when the world seems determined to stress them out. In these situations, de-escalation room padding installed in schools and healthcare facilities creates a safe space for those who need a time-out to rest and calm down.

What is a time-out or de-escalation room?

Time-out or de-escalation rooms are safety rooms where the surfaces are padded.  Walls, floors, doors, and even ceilings are sometimes covered in safety wall padding.  Fixtures are typically secured behind the padding to ensure a high level of safety and security.  The wall padding in a time-out room is similar to gym wall padding that you might see in a sports facility.  No matter where you see wall padding, its ultimate purpose is to keep people safe from injuring themselves or others. 

Time-out or de-escalation rooms areas are designed to give people a place to go when negative emotions and outside stimuli become too much for them to handle.  The wall padding is made of a durable yet soft material that keeps people safe from harm while they de-escalate and return to a state of equilibrium and calmness.  In some facilities, a de-escalation room may also be called:

  • Seclusion room
  • Calming room
  • Padded room
  • Quiet room
  • Personal safety room

De-escalation room padding also offers the facility owners a few benefits, too.  Wall padding lowers an organization’s risk of liability as the wall padding helps prevent time-out room occupants from harming themselves during the de-escalation session.  Wall padding also reduces the chances of workman’s comp claims being filed. 

Where is de-escalation room padding installed?

In the last few decades, rates of autism spectrum disorder (ASD), emotional behavioral disorder (EBD), and social-emotional behavioral difficulties (SEBD) have increased.  Increased rates of these disorders in the general and school-aged population, along with changes in legislation, mean there is a higher burden on schools and other facilities to keep people safe from the harm.  You might find a de-escalation room installed in the following facilities:

  • Schools
  • Hospitals
  • Inpatient care facilities
  • Prisons 
  • Rehab centers
  • Eldercare centers

People detoxing from drugs and alcohol may become violent toward themselves or rehab staff, and can benefit from the calming effects of a padded safety room.  In eldercare facilities, patients with dementia or Alzheimer’s can become agitated and hurtful.  Padded de-escalation rooms not only keep elderly patients safe from harming themselves, but they also give them a chance to calm down in a safe and secure environment.  Staff members are also kept safe from injury, reducing liability issues for the facility. Only one person at a time can use a de-escalation room. In larger facilities, more than one room may need to be installed. 

Why would someone need to use a de-escalation room?

Psychological care and interventions have become more sophisticated and effective over the last few years.  Modern medications have also made considerable improvements in the lives of people on the autism spectrum or who have emotional difficulties.  But sometimes, a student or patient will become overstimulated, agitated, and possibly violent toward themselves or others. The purpose of de-escalation room wall padding ultimately boils down to safety for the individual and those around them.  When someone becomes overwhelmed or enraged, they can go into a padded room to safely begin the de-escalation process and return to a state of calmness. 

What are some of the most common features found in a padded de-escalation room?

Professional wall padding installation techs have the ability to design the wall padding to fit whatever space is needed, and to the facility’s specifications.  Walls, doorways, floors, and ceilings can be outfitted with safety wall padding. The padding can also come in a variety of calming colors. Wall padding that is designed for a de-escalation room is practically indestructible.  It is extremely difficult for someone to tear or pull the padding away from the wall where it’s secured. Wall padding for seclusion rooms also comes with a Class A fire rating and self-extinguishable technology for additional safety features. 

Wall padding installed in a de-escalation room is also free of seams and cracks.  This reduces the chances of the padding coming loose from the wall. A non-slip surface also keeps people inside the room safe from further injury.  Caring for and cleaning the wall padding installed in a time-out room is also easy. The material is durable enough to withstand regular soaps and detergents.  Also, it is resistant to mold and fungus, which ensures a long lifespan of the material. 

You may think that padding a floor might lead to scuff marks and other damages.  But de-escalation room padding applied to a floor is given a resinous coating, making it resistant to scuffs.  Bond coats are also applied to the back of the padding, so that it is secured tightly to the floor without harming it. 

Can you apply de-escalation wall padding to existing rooms?

Existing rooms can be outfitted with high-quality and durable de-escalation wall padding.  It is also possible to design new construction with de-escalation room wall padding in mind.  The entire room, including window reveals and radiators, can be outfitted with this special padding. A bed surround and bed headboards can also be covered, as well as door frames and hard furniture.

It’s also possible to install de-escalation padding in a bathroom.  For padding installed in a bathroom where moisture will be an ever-present factor, the padding is often coated in a liquid polymer.  This helps to keep it mold, moisture, and slip-resistant. A professional de-escalation wall padding installer in New Jersey can create a custom design for an existing room that meets the facility’s needs and budget. 

De-Escalation Room Wall Padding: A Takeaway Message

The rise in behavioral and emotional disorders, an aging population, and drug and alcohol abuse mean facilities will have to install padded rooms for both patient and staff safety.  Wall padding is easy to clean and virtually indestructible. Conveniently, a facility can have wall padding installed on an existing room. Having a de-escalation room installed with durable and soft padding will keep staff and patients safe, reducing the facility’s liability.  Contact J&J Gym Floors today at (973) 801-7219 to learn more about our wall padding installation services.

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prevent hardwood floor damage

How to Prevent Damage to Hardwood Gym Floors

As one of the most durable wood species in existence, maple is most often used to construct a hardwood gym floor.  When it’s properly maintained, a hardwood sports floor can last for decades. Take this gym floor below that we recently sanded, repainted, and sealed, for example.  You wouldn’t know just by looking at it but this floor is over 50 years old.

prevent hardwood floor damage

While maple sports floors may be durable and long-lasting, they are prone to certain forms of damage.  Identification, prevention, and knowledge about these sports floor nemeses are critical to maintaining the health and beauty of your gym.  Here’s what you need to know about how to prevent damage to hardwood gym floors. 

What’s the most common type of damage to gym floors?

Water damage to gym floors is what we see most often wreaking havoc on sports facilities in the tri-state New Jersey area.  Floods, broken pipes, and water ingress from busted window seals happen frequently when sports facilities aren’t adequately maintained.  High humidity that’s not kept in-check can also harm the wood floor. Failing to have a sports floor sanded and refinished can also damage the wood beneath paint and finishing coats. 

Can you reverse damage to a hardwood sports floor?

If identified and caught early enough, it is possible to reverse certain types of damage to a sports floor.  In more serious cases, you may need to have some parts of the floor replaced. Rarely will you need an entirely new gym floor installed, although it is a possibility if the damage is severe enough.  Below, we’ll look at the most common types of sports floor damage and how to prevent them from happening. 

Cupping Damage in Sports Floors

Cupping occurs when the edges of the maple boards in a sports floor rise above the centers. Moisture causes cupping when there are higher levels of it on the bottom of the board as opposed to the ambient humidity levels in the air above it.  If cupping isn’t addressed, the floor will begin to look wavy and rippled. Over time, the top edges of the boards will compress the cellular structure of the maple and the board can collapse, resulting in permanent damage. 

Plumbing issues are often to blame for this.  But sometimes, frequent and aggressive wet mopping can cause cupping in gym floors.  Your first step is to identify what’s causing the boards to cup, and eliminate it. Once appropriate humidity levels are achieved, the boards will return to their normal appearance.  In severe instances, you may need to replace cupped floor boards. 

Damage from Crowning Floor Boards

Crowning in sports floors is the opposite of cupping.  Instead of the edges of the boards rising, the middle of the board will bulge instead, while the edges remain lower.  Moisture imbalances are to blame for crowning gym floors. Crowning usually occurs because of how maintenance crews and sports facility managers respond to moisture damage. 

For example, sports floors that start cupping will sometimes get sanded down after moisture issues are addressed, but long before the moisture in the boards have a chance to dry out.  If a cupped gym floor is sanded before it dries, the bulging edges will be initially flattened. But eventually, the moisture in the floorboards dissipate. 

When this occurs, you’re left with a crowning floor where the edges are much lower than the center.  The key to preventing this most common cause of crowning floors is to wait until the boards thoroughly dry before you attempt to fix any permanent damage.  In most cases, simply waiting for the floor to dry after you fix the cause of the moisture will prevent crowning. 

Buckling Gym Floors

Buckling is one of the most severe forms of damage to hardwood sports floors.  More times than not, flooding from broken pipes or a natural disaster causes buckling if the wood floor is left underwater for a significant period.  With buckling, the wood planks become so severely warped from moisture retention and expansion that the floor appears wavy and hilly. 

Maintaining the plumbing system can prevent pipes from breaking and flooding the facility.  Unfortunately though, you can’t control Mother Nature. Spot repairs may be able to fix a gym floor buckled from minor water damage.  But for severe damage where the entire floor is warped, the only way to fix it is to completely replace the gym floor or resurface it. 

Damage from Dirt, Dust, and Debris

Dust from old HVAC systems along with dirt and debris from people’s shoes can damage wood floors if not promptly cleaned.  Dust and dirt are tiny particles with rough edges. When they get tracked across the sports floor, they will wear away at the finishing coat like sandpaper.  An unclean, scratched up gym floor can also increase the chances of slips and falls. 

Depending on the amount of foot traffic your gym sees, you’ll need to dry mop it at least once per day.  Any mud or dirt that’s tracked into the facility will need to be cleaned promptly. Adequate, regular cleaning will go a long way toward preventing damage to the floor and increasing its lifespan. 

Preventing Sports Floor Damage: A Final Takeaway

It’s one thing to adequately maintain a sports floor with regular cleaning, sanding, and recoating. But one way to prevent other forms of damage is to maintain the HVAC and plumbing systems too.  Ensuring that the windows and roof are in good working order will prevent leaks from occurring and will also protect the hardwood sports floor from moisture damage. 

If your sports floor is a victim of water damage, we can help.  At J&J Gym Floors, we’ve seen our fair share of buckling, cupping, and crowning gym floors.  Call us today at (973) 801-7219 for a free quote for damage repair.

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gym floor daily cleaning

Hardwood Gym Floor Daily Cleaning and Maintenance: The Nitty Gritty

Today’s gym floors see a ton of activity.  From school sporting events to dance competitions, drama performances, and conferences, a hardwood gym floor is subject to a lot of wear and tear.  A hardwood gym floor is a massive investment for your sports facility. So, of course, you’ll want to protect it. But many sports facility managers and gym owners don’t understand how to conduct a suitable daily cleaning schedule to preserve and maintain the integrity of their sports floor.  You’ll want to schedule a screening and recoating about once a year.  But cleaning the gym floor daily will keep the hardwood well-maintained and safe for people to use.

Myths and Misconceptions of Daily Gym Floor Cleaning 

There’s a lot of confusion surrounding the proper type of daily care you should conduct on a sports floor.  Part of the reason why many sports facility owners struggle with this aspect of gym floor ownership is because of the very nature of the gym floor itself. 

It’s made of wood, which many people aren’t familiar with maintaining in the first place.  But that’s not all. A hardwood gym floor has a special coating and finishes on the wood. These layers of material are used to protect the wood and to prevent people from slipping on the floor.  The finish gives the floor it’s shiny look. Many sports facility managers think they can’t put water on the gym floor to clean it. But that’s not entirely true. 

The Truth About Water and Hardwood Gym Floors

Too much ambient moisture, or humidity, is definitely harmful to the gym floor’s integrity. Standing, pooling water is also hazardous to the wood’s health and can cause cupping and bucklingBut using water to clean the floor won’t harm it.  Many sports facilities’ daily care is neglected because of this misconception about water and gym floors.  Neglecting daily cleaning routines for a sports floor can make costly repairs more likely to occur, and more frequently, too.  Plus, a lackluster, shabby-looking sports floor won’t inspire confidence in visitors or customers. 

Keeping a hardwood gym floor clean and pristine is a must.  Below are the following steps you can take to ensure that your sports facility looks professional, polished, and safe for athletes to use. 

Daily Gym Floor Cleaning: The Bare Minimum

The bare minimum for daily gym floor cleaning is a once-daily dry mopping and tacking, preferably performed first thing in the morning.  Why? Dust and dirt tend to settle over the floorboards throughout the night. While we can’t really make out the shape of a speck of dust with the unaided eye, dust is an abrasive material.  At least, to your gym floor, it is. 

Remember, sports floors are coated with a sticky substance to create traction and keep athletes from slipping.  When the dust settles on the floor overnight and isn’t cleared away before people walk on it, foot traffic is essentially scratching up the floor and wearing away the coating and finish faster. 

Dry mopping and tacking are the bare necessities for gym floor cleaning.  While dry mopping and tacking can get rid of dust first thing in the morning, you must perform more robust daily cleaning measures to keep the gym floor in good condition. 

Make sure you wet the floor. 

When something becomes dirty or unsanitary, do you simply wipe away the grime and bacteria with a dry towel?  Doubtful. To get something adequately clean, you have to use water. Not to be gross, but athletes do perspire. 

Sweat is full of proteins and salts.  Over time, bacteria can begin to grow, feeding off these organic substances. Using a solvent-based cleaner without enough water won’t work to break down these substances and get the floor clean.  Using a wet mop or an automatic scrubber along with the proper cleaning solution will get rid of icky residues. So, don’t be afraid to use water for cleaning purposes. Just be sure to dry the floor once you’re finished cleaning. 

Use fewer chemicals when cleaning the gym floor. 

Less is more when it comes to a sports facility. Hardwood, along with the special coatings and finishes applied to a gym floor, do not like different chemical cocktails.  Please keep it simple and use a neutral and mild detergent cleaner. Harsh chemicals or chemical mixtures can hurt the sports floor and shorten its lifespan. 

Consider using an automatic scrubber instead of a wet mop. 

Mopping is becoming a thing of the past, and good riddance!  Traditional wet mops can be hard on the back and hips. Plus, it takes longer to mop a large sports floor.  An automatic scrubber can get the floor cleaned and dried within 15 minutes or less. If you don’t have the budget to invest in an automatic scrubber, you’ll still need to use a wet mop on the floor every so often. 

Keep dust to a minimum. 

Dust is a significant problem for sports facility owners.  It’s a never-ending battle to keep the gym dust-free. Dust that settles on the hardwood floor can wear away the finish.   It can also make the floor slippery, increasing the chances of injuries and falls. One way to reduce dust in the gym is to make sure the HVAC system and ductwork are in good working order.  Be sure to change furnace filters and have the ductwork professionally cleaned to keep the facility as dust-free as possible. 

Protect the floor with mats. 

Walk-off mats are a must when it comes to daily gym floor cleaning and care.  Using walk-off mats serves multiple purposes. For one thing, they reduce the amount of dirt, dust, and debris that gets tracked into the gym from spectators and visitors.  But the trick to using walk-off mats and having them work for you is to clean them regularly. A dirty walk-off mat makes it easier for foot traffic to track grime throughout the facility.  A good practice is to vacuum and wipe the mats daily. Place the mats near entrances and exits, too. They will also help reduce the chances of standing water pooling on the gym floor during winter when snow is on the ground. 

Gym Floor Daily Cleaning: The Bottom Line

The easiest thing you can do to maintain the integrity of your gym floor and protect its lifespan is to keep it as free from grit and grime as possible.  Keep these tips in mind for daily gym floor cleaning and maintenance. 

Investing in gym floor cover systems is an excellent way to protect your hardwood sports floor.  At J&J Gym Flooring, we offer a range of durable and beautiful floor cover systems for sports facilities.  Call us today at (973) 801-7219 to request a quote.

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buckling cupping gym floor

Gym Floor Buckling and Cupping from Water Damage: How to Fix it

Hardwood is a popular choice for both residential and commercial flooring. In gymnasiums, the hardwood floor is usually made out of maple, a hardy and robust wood that’s not only durable but beautiful, too. Unfortunately, though, hardwood floors are sensitive to moisture and humidity. In the Northeastern part of the U.S., 2018 and 2019 were record-breaking summers for heat and high humidity. Excessive humidity, heat, and flooding can do a number on hardwood and gym floors.

If your gym floors are looking a little worse for wear thanks to water damage, we can repair and restore them to their former glory. Contact us at J & J Gym Floors for a free estimate.

What are the most common causes of gym floor buckling and cupping?

Changes in humidity and to a lesser extent, the temperature can cause problems with a hardwood floor’s integrity and appearance. In general, the moisture content of the wood causes it to expand and contract. Wood, including the planks that make up the wood flooring in a gymnasium, absorbs and expels moisture depending on the humidity levels and temperature of the surrounding air. On a hot, humid day, the wood will absorb more moisture and expand. Once the humidity levels off and temperatures cool, moisture in the wood is absorbed into the atmosphere. The wood contracts as it dries. In the wintertime, it’s not uncommon to see tiny spaces between wood planks.

Wild swings in temperature and humidity can cause severe issues with a gym floor. If the floor floods, then it can become warped and cracked. If your gym floors are buckling and cupping, water is usually the culprit. Either a flood, high heat, and humidity, or a drastic swing in temperatures and moisture content in the wood itself are to blame for problems with the wood’s appearance.

What is gym floor buckling, and how does it happen?

Have you noticed that a part of your wood floor is slightly raised? This is called “buckling,” and it happens when part of the wood pulls apart from the subfloor underneath, giving the area a raised, mounded appearance. In severe cases of wood floor buckling, the wood can rise several inches.

Buckling is considered an extreme reaction to moisture. It is unlikely to occur when the humidity is high during the summer months, although in rare cases, humidity and dampness can lead to buckling. Water damage, such as flooding, leaks, and spills, is usually to blame for instances of gym floor buckling. Buckling is far more likely to happen if a wood floor is left submerged in water for an extended period. But in some instances, wood floor buckling occurs because of installation issues, such as:

  • Incorrect nailing practices
  • Using the wrong nails for the floor
  • Improper construction of the subfloor
  • Not using a vapor or moisture barrier during installation
  • Incorrect mastics
  • Incorrect mastic transfer
  • Subfloor separation issues
  • Subfloor contamination

Gymnasium and hardwood floor owners may fear that a buckled floor needs completely replaced. But in many cases, it’s possible to repair a buckled gym floor instead of tearing out the construction and starting anew.

What is gym floor cupping?

Excessive moisture and water can cause another issue with hardwood gym floors – cupping. Cupping happens when the floorboards absorb moisture from the surrounding air, either above the hardwood floor or beneath it in the subfloor. With gymnasium floors, the top part of the wood plank is coated and sealed. So usually, cupping is the result of moisture coming in from the underside of the floor, which causes the bottom part of the plank to expand. In a cupped gym floor, the sides and edges of the boards will curl upwards, while the center of the board will remain at a normal, low level. Cupping gives the board a “U” shaped appearance.

Minor cupping usually isn’t anything to worry about, and it’s common in locations that experience humid summers and dry winters. In these cases, the cupping will go away on its own as the temperature levels off, and humidity goes down. But severe cupping indicates a serious structural problem. It will need to be addressed to keep the wood floor healthy and pristine.

How do you repair a water damaged gym floor?

When it comes to water damage, no matter what type of flooring is in danger, the first step is to dry out the floor completely. Repairs can’t begin until the floor is completely dry, and the source of the water damage has been identified and fixed.

A wet vacuum works wonders for cleaning up large pools of water. The next step after using the wet vac is to put dehumidifiers and fans in the gymnasium for at least a few days. This should help clear up any remaining moisture and help air out the wood planks. Running dehumidifiers will also help to prevent mold from growing.

Damaged Gym Floors: A Takeaway Message

Water and wood floors simply do not mix. When water damage isn’t dealt with right away, a gym floor may need to be replaced entirely, and mold can start to grow. Quickly tending to a flooded basketball court or gym can stop severe damage from occurring. Lucky gym owners may only be left with minor cupping that dissipates on its own after a time. But for severe cases of water damage and flooding, you’ll need to contact an experienced gym floor repairer.

Over the past 20 years, J & J Gym Floors has repaired and replaced hundreds of gym floors. As a full-service gym floor contractor, we specialize in repairing basketball courts that have this very problem—cupping and buckling from water damage and moisture issues.

Gym wood floors require the care and experience you can count on from J&J Gym Floors. We have the know-how and equipment to handle just about any type of basketball court flooring damage. We can turn your damaged hardwood floor into a gym floor your team will be proud to play on. If you have any signs of water damage on your hardwood floor, call us right away before the problem gets worse.

 

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recoat gym floor

How Often Do I Have To Recoat My Gym Floor?

Every facility manager understands the vitality of recoating the gym floor. So long as you have spent some time on your hardwood gym floor, a flooring professional would tell you “screening and recoating” is one of the keys to maintenance.

Sure, people tend to use jargons to come across as knowledgeable, but contractors, for instance, understand that recoating can make all the difference. Now, the real question that often bewilders facility managers is how frequently you should recoat your wood gym floor.

Well, in simple terms, wood floor coating ensures durability, but inevitably, it wears out with time. It is no wonder most schools have a dedicated budget to recoat their wood gym floor at least once a year.

What Exactly Is Recoating?

There is a good chance you may have heard of the phrase ‘screen and recoat’. It is one of the most common phrases that refer to the refinish of the floor. Dry-screen, for example, is arguably the most used method to recoat wood gym floors. Contrarily, some schools and institutes use a wet-screen method where you use a scrubber to clean the gym floor and subsequently implement the final finish.

Why Recoat Your Gym Floor

The finish gradually disappears because of the daily friction on the gym floor. With time, this layer becomes scratched and thinner every year. If you allow the coating of your gym floor to wear thin for an extended period, it will not only show stains & scratches, but will decrease the  safety & longevity of the floor.

Naturally, you do not want the damage to exceed to the point where you have to repair the gym floor by sanding. So, when that protective coat becomes too thin, recoat it with another layer.

Set a Time Frame

The regularity with which you should recoat your gym floor depends on the level of usage. If your gym floor is in hard use, it will reduce the life of a floor for good. The best way is to look out for the signs of wear every two years after each recoating. In addition, if you visually see a pattern of scratches, then consider recoating annually.

Remember, the goal to screen and recoat every year is to include a new luster to your gym floor. Simultaneously, the annual recoating will also enhance the friction traits of your gym for safe use.

Though there are several processes, it usually takes about one or two days to recoat the gym floor. The finish, on the other hand, could take additional 3-5 days that would depend on your choice to finish, such as oil-based or water-based.

Contrary to misguided perception, the time gap difference between an annual and three-year recoating impacts the performance of your wood gym floor. Over time, it can jeopardize the safety of the floor, as it gets more and more slippery.

For the protection of the athletes and others who use your wood gym floor, screen it annually. The more you protect the gym floor, the longer it will perform and sustain.

Bottom Line

The recoating brings back the luster of a worn-out gym floor and makes sure it is safe and secure for use. In essence, you need to recoat wood sports gym floors annually. That said, more regular recoating might be necessary for schools and institutions used heavily.

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tape on gym floor

Painters Tape on the Gym Floor? You Better Think Twice

For gym floor contractors, “tape” is a four-letter word they don’t like to hear in the industry. Many sports floor owners and facility managers think they can put regular old painters tape on a hardwood gym floor. After all, you’re just going to play one little game of pickleball. What’s the problem with putting down some tape to make temporary lines for the game? Turns out, a whole lot. If you’re thinking about using painters tape; or any tape for that matter on the gym floor, here’s why you should think twice.

painters tape gym floor

Why do people put painters tape on a gym floor?

A correctly cared for gym floor will still need to be regularly maintained. Due to unavoidable wear-and-tear, the finish on a gym floor will wear away over time and need replacing. But ironically, equipment used as teaching and coaching aids end up doing the most damage to a gym floor. Painters tape and other types of adhesive are sometimes used. Frustrated coaches and instructors will often put painters tape down on the gym floor to instruct athletes on movement. In other cases, the brightly colored role of painters tape comes out when people want to play an impromptu game of pickleball or another sport.

We don’t want to spoil your fun or hinder the coaches’ ability to teach their students. But using tape on a gym floor is never recommended. We’ll explain why we don’t condone this practice below. And it’s not just us. Tape manufacturers don’t recommend it, and neither does the Maple Flooring Manufacturers Association (MFMA). Contractors, installers, custodial staff, and gym floor coating manufacturers all exhale an exasperated sigh when a client mentions tape on the gym floor.

Why is it a bad idea to put painters tape on a sports floor?

Any type of hardwood aerobic floor like a gymnasium will have a finishing coat on it. So will hardwood stages and dance floors. While hardwood sports floors are very durable, they do require protection in the form of finishing coats. The finishing coat does several things to protect the integrity of the wood beneath. For one thing, the coating protects the wood from scrapes and scuff marks. More importantly, the finishing coat has a stickiness to it that gives athletes much-needed traction.

Athletes can run, jump, turn, and spin quickly on the smoothe floor without tripping or slipping. That’s why a new or well-maintained gym floor causes people’s shoes to squeak when they walk across the surface. But guess what? That finishing coat isn’t a cheap commodity. You want to do what you can to extend the life of the coat and protect the wood and athletes. When you put an unauthorized adhesive on the gym floor, like painters tape, you risk pulling up the finishing coat along with the tape once it’s finally removed.

What happens when you put an adhesive, like tape, on a gym floor?

A lot of things can happen, and none of them are good. The worst type of damage that can occur to the gym floor is when you try to remove the tape. Not only that, but the tape can also pull up any lines or decals that were painted on the floor. Finish that’s been peeled away will also be visible to the naked eye and can make the floor look scruffy and unprofessional.

Peeled away finish is also a safety issue. How so? When sections of the floor are missing the sticky refinishing coat, areas of the floor will all have different surface friction. Athletes and people using the floor can trip and fall very easily, which increases liability concerns for your sports facility.

For friction values on a gym floor, the MFMA recommends floor finish to have a coefficient- friction value from .5 to .7. This range of friction values classifies a walking surface as slip-resistant. Keep in mind, this range isn’t just a requirement for an approved floor finish. It is also a requirement for any coating that is applied on top of the initial floor finish on a hardwood sports floor. Reputable manufacturers of gym floor coatings will have third-party labs test their products to ensure safety and quality.

Are there safe alternatives to tape for making temporary lines?

Now that you know the problems tape on a sports floor can cause, that probably doesn’t solve your initial problem. There will come a time when you may need to put down temporary lines on a sports floor. Applying painters tape seems easy, but it’s hazardous to the floor’s integrity. You can use white shoe polish or tempura paint that’s marketed to children. But these products are messy and difficult to apply, even if they may be safer to put on the floor than painters tape.

It’s also possible to buy products specifically designed for this very issue. They often resemble large markers, and they make it easier to apply temporary lines to the gym floor without the mess of shoe polish or craft paint. All of these products can be cleaned and removed from the floor with regular mopping. Which you are doing to maintain the health and beauty of your gym floor, right? 

What can be done to repair the damage on the gym floor that’s been taped?

Applying painters tape and then pulling it up, along with the floor’s finish, will cause some serious damage to your sports floor. A cheap, temporary fix may be to do a simple screen and recoating, but this isn’t a permanent or thorough solution. In most cases, the only way to properly fix peeled off finish is to sand the whole floor down to the bare wood, repaint the lines, and apply a new finishing coat. This can cost up to 30,000 dollars. So, we recommend you avoid putting painters tape on the gym floor at all costs.

Though we never suggest laying down any tape on a sports floor, if you do we suggest you remove as soon as possible to prevent further damage as the longer it stays the more it adheres. If you find that you use these temporary lines for extended periods of time, you may want to consider adding them to the current permanent lines at your next screening or sanding. Possibly as a lighter/nude color that is not noticeable or distracting during a basketball game, but visible enough when needed.

Has painters tape damaged your hardwood gym floor? We can help. Contact J&J Gym Floors today to schedule an on-site consultation at your earliest convenience.

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protect sports floor winter

How to Protect Your Sports Floor Now That Winter is Here

Sports facility managers and owners can’t stand the sight of a wet gym floor. That’s never a pleasant sight to see first thing in the morning. Now that winter is here, it’s no longer a question of “if” the sports floor will get wet, but “when.” These cold and dreary months are full of ice, snow, and the occasional rainstorm. As a sports facility owner or manager, you’ll want to come up with effective maintenance plans to protect your sports floor now that winter is here. 

Water damage is the biggest threat to hardwood gym floors. 

It is true – most of the sports wood gym floors eventually run into water damage or over-usage that shrinks the lifetime value of their sports gym floor. The winter months are some of the most important times of the year to pay close attention to potential water damage. Preventative measures will ensure that your investment in the sports facility is safe. 

Sure, managers and owners are knowledgeable about changing winter conditions such as temperature and humidity. Still, the majority of them run into another obstacle entirely when it comes to safeguarding the wood sports floor from other inevitable winter weather elements – ice and snow being the big ones. 

Keeping that in mind, here are some of the preventative maintenance ideas you can implement right now to protect the floor and increase the lifetime value of your gym facility. 

winter sports floor

1. Develop a routine cleaning schedule for the gym this winter.

The winter is a hectic and busy time for sporting activities. There is only so much beating your gym floor can take during basketball games and other events. It’s vital to create and implement a plan that protects the lifetime value of your wood floor in winter. The trick is to devise a regular cleaning schedule spot cleaning and dust mopping. These small investments into the health of your floor can go a long way in ensuring the integrity of the wood, and user’s safety. For private gym owners, a clean facility can go a long way in retaining customers and protecting your business’s image. 

2. Put doormats at entrances and exits to collect snow, ice, & debris.

As they say, a pound of prevention is worth a pound of cure. Preventive maintenance is the best thing you can do for your wood gym floor this winter. One of the simplest ways to prevent winter water damage is to use affordable door mats at entry ways. When athletes and spectators enter the gym, they will track snow, mud, ice and salt debris into the building. Doormats prevent melted ice and snow from pooling and harming the floor. They also make it easy for visitors to wipe the bottom of their shoes and prevent mud and muck from getting tracked throughout the facility. Wood floors will suffer under the added weight of pooling water – a killer of wood floors. Lastly, door mats can help catch debris before they are tracked in to your gym, avoiding scratches or corrosion to the finish.

Put doormats at each entrance of the gym this winter, preferably before the first snowstorm hits so you don’t have to scramble around at the last minute. 

3. Use floor coverings when the floor isn’t in use. 

There is a good chance your gym floors are in use for more than just sporting events. The floors probably see a decent amount of downtime, too. When your sports floor is not in use for a game, conference, or performance, cover the floor to safeguard it from constant foot traffic and other potential damages. Make sure to give the floor a good cleaning prior to putting down covers to avoid unwanted debris underneath scratching the finish.

4. Make sure indoor conditions are within a healthy range. 

Extreme temperature swings and harsh winter weather can do a number on your hardwood floors. During times of low temps and low humidity, wood flooring will shrink and risks cracking. The solution is to maintain a favorable indoor climate. Suitable temperature for your gym floor would be in the 60s or 70s. Also, keep humidity ratios from 35% to 50% to prevent shrinkage and damage. 

5. Adequately maintain the plumbing in the sports facility.

Cold weather can freeze and break water pipes if you’re not careful. Flooding from frozen pipes that have broken will cause severe cupping and buckling of the floor if water is left to pool. In cases where the gym floor has been left soaking in stagnant floodwater, the wood floorboards can become severely warped. In these cases, the only fix is a complete reinstallation of the gym floor. It may seem like the only thing you need to maintain to protect the gym floor is the wood itself. But the HVAC and the plumbing systems are equally crucial for ensuring a safe environment for the gym and those who use it. 

Make sure the facility maintains an adequate temperature to prevent expansion and contraction in the wood and to prevent the pipes from breaking. Also, ensure the pipes are adequately insulated. Pipe insulation will do two things to protect the gym floor this winter:

  • Prevents freezing and breakage
  • Reduces humidity

When cold water pipes contact with warmer ambient temps, the pipes will form condensation. Insulation helps to absorb this excess water that can increase humidity levels too much in the sports facility, causing expansion in the wood floor. 

Protecting Sports Floors in Winter: A Takeaway Message

Winter is a rough time of the year for wood gym floors. The slightest decrease in temperature can impact the floor’s condition for a long time. With the help of the above tips, you can safeguard your sports floor during this busy, and often messy, time of year.  

Has your wood gym floor suffered damage from excess water, heat, and humidity? We can help. Call us today at J&J Gym Floors at (973) 801-7219 to schedule a consultation with our expert gym flooring contractors.

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gym floor maintenance

New Jersey Gym Floor Maintenance: What’s Your Game Plan?

Most people have the idea that gym floors are exclusively for sporting events and games. But nowadays, that’s simply not the case. Your average gymnasium in a school or facility is used as a multi-purpose room. Not just the location for sporting events, gym floors see a ton of other activity. From pep rallies to drama productions and conferences, today’s gym floors work much harder than their predecessors. You can expect to use a gym floor for up to 16 hours per day. That’s a lot of wear-and-tear. Do you have a game plan for maintaining your gym floor? Here’s a few pointers to help extend the life of your gym floor in the years to come.

gym floor maintenance

What are the most common types of gym floor damage?

It’s common sense that you’d want to keep your gym floor in good condition and well-maintained. But to do this, facility managers have to know what causes gym floor damage in the first place. Excess moisture and infrequent maintenance are some of the most common types of damage that your gym floor will need protecting against. Luckily, you have a lot of control here and can easily prevent damage to the sports floor.

In the tri-state area, we see humid summers, rain, and also have to deal with the freeze/thaw cycle come wintertime. These environmental issues can do a number on wood structures, and by extension, a hardwood gym floor. If you see buckling or cupping in the floorboards, excess moisture either in the atmosphere above the floor or below it is probably to blame. Flooding will also cause extreme changes in the structural integrity and appearance of the floor. In these cases, a professional gym floor installer in New Jersey can restore your wood floor to its original condition. Also, keep in mind that maintaining a gym floor is vital to the appearance but critical to ensuring the safety of athletes’ & patrons using your floors.

Everyday Wear-and-Tear on a Gym Floor

A new gym floor has multiple coats of polyurethane giving the floor that beautiful, shiny appearance. In addition to appearance the finish serves a safety purpose by providing traction so athletes don’t slip. However the finish coats won’t last forever.

Some parts of the gym floor are prone to more wear than other areas. Mainly, those high-risk areas are the ones that see the most foot-traffic. So, entrances and exits, where the net is placed for volleyball, and over near the basketball hoops will wear out more quickly — all that sliding, jumping, starting, and stopping wears away at the finish. And the more events you hold in the gym, the quicker the finish will disappear. It’s true that the floor can be damaged from dragging gym equipment around. But mostly, wear and tear on the gym floor is to be expected.

Do you have high standards for your gym floor? Many facility managers want their floor to look as pristine and sharp as a professional basketball court for the NBA. We can make that happen. However, professional gymnasiums don’t see as much damage as the high-traffic gym floors in a school. But don’t stress about it. With regular and high-quality gym floor maintenance, you can extend the look and structural integrity of the floor. How? With screening and recoating.

Gym Floor Maintenance New Jersey: Screen and Recoating

When the finish on a gym floor wears over time, the floor looses traction. The finish protects the wood underneath for damage, and it also keeps athletes from slipping. Fortunately, you can restore the tacky finish to a floor with a screen and recoating.

How do screening and recoating work?

The first step in the process is to abrade the floor with an abrasive screening disk. Abrading the floor allows the new finish to stick to the wood. There are two different ways a floor can be abraded. The most popular method is to use a 100-grit screen, called a dry screen. Some gym floor repair companies will use a scrubber-vac to scuff up the floor before applying the new coat of finish. This method is referred to as a wet-screen. After scuffing up the floor, it’s cleaned before the new finish is applied.

Once the new coat of finish is applied, the floor will have to be clear of foot traffic for at least 48 hours. In some cases, you may need to keep the gym floor clear for three to five days after the new coating is applied. Oil or water-based finishes all have different cure times. But for a standard screening and recoating job, you can have the fresh coat of finish applied Friday afternoon, and the gym floor is good to go for any sporting events for the next week.

Screening and recoating is one of the most critical types of gym floor maintenance you can perform.

With screening and recoating, you’ll:

  • Restore the floor to its original luster and shine
  • Keep the wood floorboards protected from damage
  • Prevent athletes from slipping
  • Remove scuff marks from the floor
  • Protect paint and graphics on the sports floor

At a minimum, you’ll need to have the gym floor screened and recoated once per year. But in some cases, you will want to screen and recoat the floor more frequently. Gymnasiums that see a lot of foot traffic may need screening and recoating done every six months.

Regular maintenance of a gym floor in New Jersey will not only keep people safe from trips and falls, but it will also extend the life of the facility. Is your gym floor due for routine maintenance? At J&J Gym Floors, we’ve been restoring and repairing gym floors in New Jersey for more than fifteen years. Contact us today at (973) 370-4118 to see what we can do for your sports facility.

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gym floor refinishing

Gym Floor Refinishing: 2019 Trends

gym floor refinishing

Gym Floor Refinishing: 2019 Trends

Gyms have come a long way in the last couple of years. Athletic facilities are gradually becoming multi-use and flexible complexes combining functionality, architectural flair and personality. Gone are the days when gym floors were just simple borders with block lettering. Gym floors now speak volumes about the quality of service and general aura you can expect from a gym. They provide a safe, high-performance surface where all the action takes place. It also aids in preventing accidents and injuries. 

This is why athletic directors and facilities managers are going out of their way to ensure their gym floors are the best equipment in their gym.  

For all its importance, the gym floor has to be maintained and kept in prime condition at all times. It should be smooth and even; free of dust, cracks and scratches. Proper cleaning practices should be followed especially when water is involved. Facilities managers should also ensure they re-coat the floor annually. Unfortunately, this is not enough to keep it in perfect condition for a long period of time. With all the activities going on, it is advisable to consider gym floor refinishing after every 7-10 years or as soon as scratches and cracks start creeping in. This is guaranteed to add a new lease of life to your gym and get everyone excited for the season.

Top Gym Floor Refinishing Trends For 2019

Multi-Functionality

We are in an era of inclusivity where every child is allowed and given the tools to explore all their talents. Consequently, contemporary sports facilities need versatile flooring to support a diverse range of activities. From basketball games, track meets, racquetball, pickleball and dancing events, an ideal gym in 2019 should seamlessly support all these activities. The gym floor, in this case, has to be safe, durable and high performing in accordance with the standards expected of every athletic activity taking place on it.

Durability

You might not have thought about it, but the gym floor is actually the most used equipment in the facility. With so many activities and so much foot traffic, modern gym flooring takes a hard beating. Therefore, the floor needs to be tough, strong and long-lasting to keep up with the high-intensity activities it supports. The floor should be hard enough to withstand high-impact activity and heavy loads without a scratch or gouge.

Ease of Maintenance

Modern gym facilities need floors that have minimal maintenance requirements for optimal functionality and performance. Floor systems that lack spaces between the wooden planks and tiles tend to be ideal as they do not accumulate water damage or dirt in hard to reach places. This allows for the floors to be cleaned quickly, efficiently and easily and be in top shape without having to close the sports facility for extended periods of time.

Heightened Safety

Above everything else, every gym floor should first and foremost provide safety and comfort to everyone that steps on it. As such, the flooring has to provide effective protection and good cushioning to the athletes. Ideally, the floor should be shock absorbent, resilient and soft to the touch.

Aesthetic Appeal

When you step into a gym, there should be no doubt whose house it is. The facility should have a distinct personality indicative of the people using it. Gym flooring is now a great medium through which the facility can gain greater personality and boost its aesthetic appeal. Using innovative designs and color themes, modern gyms are using this vast space to make an artistic statement. You can view it like an open canvas. Drawing inspiration from team logo or mascot and with impressive dimensional effects and intricate patterns, you can enhance the aesthetic appeal of your facility and build up excitement among the athletes and the public.

So there you have it. If you’re going to refinish your gym floor this year, we’re here to help. Don’t just watch as other gyms transform their facilities to state-of-the-art masterpieces. Contact us today and let us make it happen for you. You can also send us your project for a review. At J & J Gym Floors, we’ll help you transform your gym floor to a masterpiece.

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ncaa-3-point-line-distance-change

NCAA 3 Point Line Extended

NCAA 3 Point Line Extended

The NCAA men’s college basketball rules committee recently passed a series of proposals for the 2019-2020 that should open up the game. 

The headline-grabbing change involves moving the college 3 point line distance back to 22′ 1 3/4”, the distance used by FIBA for international games as well as the WNBA. During the 2018-2019 season, men’s basketball used a three-point line of 20′ 3/4”.

Moving The 3 Point Line To Open Up The Game

Chairman of the rules committee, Colorado Buffalos head coach Tad Boyle explained that “moving the line back would create more space offensively while also altering the overdependent nature of teams to rely on outside shooting.” 

He continued, “After gathering information over the past two seasons, we feel it’s time to make the change. Freedom of movement in the game remains important, and we feel this will open up the game. We believe this will remove some of the congestion on the way to the basket.”

The committee recently passed the rules change in their June 3rd meeting, and the changes will go into effect immediately next year for Division I teams, and due to financial considerations, will roll out during the 2020-2021 year for Division II and Division III teams.

In recent years the NCAA has taken measures to gauge the success of potential rules changes. In the 2018 and 2019 NIT Tournament, one of the potential rules tested was the deepening of the college 3 point line distance to the international standard. Results from the 2019 NIT experiment showed that teams too more 3-point shots and shot at a slightly lower percentage when compared to regular season averages.

Extending The 3 point line distance is based on three objectives:

  • making the lane more open and available for dribble/drive plays from the perimeter
  • to slow the growing trend of the prevalence of the 3-point shot in men’s college basketball by making the shot more challenging, while keeping it an integral part of the game
  • assisting in offensive spacing, requiring the defense to cover more of the court

What This Rule Change Means For Your School

Whether moving the college 3-point line distance will reverse the increasing trend of the 3-point shot is unclear as college basketball has become a game of threes and shots in the paint, making the mid-range game a lost art.

However, since the rules change has passed and the changes go into effect during the 2019 season,

  • Division I schools will need to adjust their courts to reflect the updated rules.
  • All Division I school basketball courts will need to be resurfaced with the updated game lines prior to the start of the 2019 season.
  • Division II and Division III schools will have until the 2020-2021 season to comply.

The NCAA, in offering the extension for Division II and III teams took into account the financial cost of compliance. For schools in the Northeast, there is a cost-effective solution to resurface and repaint your basketball court 3 point lines.

J & J Gym Floors is the premier gym floor company in the country. We work with schools to keep their gym floor, and basketball courts in top condition throughout the year. Your Division I school needs to comply with these rule changes for the 2019 season, and Division II and III schools will need to meet a 2020 deadline. Give us a call and let us help meet the deadline! We’re always happy to provide you with an estimate and can work with you to have your school ready for the upcoming season.

Our Service Area:

  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • NYC: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, Staten Island
  • Connecticut
  • Pennsylvania
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  • Maryland 

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slippery gym floors

How To Fix Slippery Gym Floors

How To Fix Slippery Gym Floors

At schools, colleges, churches, public fitness centers, basketball arenas and anywhere else where you have a hardwood gym floor or basketball court, properly caring for your gym floor while simultaneously avoiding the risks of a slippery gym floor is an ongoing challenge.

As a facilities manager or athletic director, you’re responsible to keep players and fans safe, avoid potential liabilities, and maintain an attractive, clean playing surface. Using the right products and methods are key to getting this done.

This blog post will show you how to fix your slippery gym floor (and, of course, your slippery basketball court).

We’ll share our answers to the following questions:

  • How to make a gym floor less slippery?
  • How to fix a slippery gym floor?
  • Why is my gym floor so slippery?
  • How to fix slippery hardwood gym floors?

How To Fix Slippery Gym Floors

1. Dry Dust Mop First – Regularly

Most facility managers realize that dust mopping on a regular basis is a must for avoiding slippery gym floors and slippery basketball courts. However, it’s not uncommon for even experts to make the mistake of wet dust mopping first with a dust mop treatment.

Dust, dirt and debris can get trapped in the coatings of even the highest quality products. That makes grime more difficult to remove later, causes the buildup of residue where the dirt particles are trapped and could even lead to scratching the floor surface.

2. Use A Microfiber Dust Mop

An ordinary wide frame dust mop certainly has its place, but a microfiber dust mop will more effectively gather and hold dust particles as it sweeps over the wood. 

Traditional dust mops are great for removing the worst of the loose dirt and debris, but microfiber mops will pick up even more. Plus, you can do a wet (water only) microfiber mopping after an initial dry mop job for an extra-deep cleaning.

3. Use Stronger Cleaning Products

All too often, floor managers hesitate to use a strong cleaning product for fear of damaging the expensive hardwood flooring. Instead, they use mild, neutral products or even just vinegar and water.

But the fact is, these mild solutions just won’t do an adequate job of removing harmful floor contaminants like salt and oil left behind after sweat-water evaporates, food and beverage spills and pavement oils tracked in on footwear. 

Even after preparing the flooring through thorough loose dirt and debris removal, you still need a strong cleaner that will not harm or dull your wood and won’t leave a slippery residue. Choose a powerful product that is specifically designed for use on gym floors and basketball courts.

4. Take Care With Automatic Scrubbers

For the first year or two after installation, you should avoid auto-scrubbing your gym floor. In later years, however, an automatic scrubber will help remove the most stubborn floor stains with ease and make the process of cleaning your floor much faster.

Be sure your scrubber and cleaning solution are fully compatible and that you are using the specific floor pad that matches your floor type and the task at hand. Only go 175 rpm or less and work sections of 1,000 square feet or less at a time till the job is complete. Allow at least 15 minutes for the floor to thoroughly dry before putting it to further use.

5. Avoid Using Numerous Cleaners

You are far better off using the right product than using multiple products to clean your gym floor. Using too many cleaners could lead to unexpected interactions between cleaners and might create a slippery residue. 

Focus on doing a better job of eliminating floor debris prior to wet mopping or automatic scrubbing. Then choose a powerful, safe floor cleaner recommended for hardwoods. But don’t layer multiple cleaning products to try to make up for inadequate results with a mild cleaner you may be presently using.

6. Use A Floor Cover

Dust is constantly floating through the air, threatening to land on your freshly cleaned gym floor. And even just walking across a gym floor, when done by hundreds of feet multiple times, can begin to make the floor dirty and slippery again.

Use of a professional gym floor covering when the floor is not in use for a day or longer will greatly reduce wear and tear, maintenance frequency and slipperiness.

7. Get Your Gym Floor Refinished

Every three to ten years, you should get your gym floor sanded and refinished. This will not only improve the floor’s appearance and reduce regular maintenance needs, but it will also make it easier to prevent your floor from getting slippery.

Many people don’t realize the real reasons why a gym floor or basketball court gets slippery and dangerous to walk on. It is usually not due to the cleaner used but to the failure to prepare the floor for the cleaner through thorough removal of floor contaminants. Using a strong cleaning product, a microfiber dust mop, proper auto-scrubbing technique and a gym floor cover also help reduce the problem.

Got Slippery Gym Floors?

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  • Established in 2003
  • +17,400 completed projects
  • Fast and professional service
  • The most knowledgable team in the industry
Gym Wall Padding Installation NJ NY CT PA DE

Custom Gym Wall Padding With Logo

Gym Wall Padding Installation NJ NY CT PA DE

Custom Gym Wall Padding With Logo

When replacing the wall padding in your gym consider our custom wall padding with printed logos.  Whether you need just a few gym wall pads or you need custom wall padding to wrap around your entire gym we can help.

We offer the following gym wall padding products and services:

  • Traditional Gym Wall Padding
  • Stage Edge and Stage Front Padding
  • Custom Column Padding
  • Custom Size and Shape Wall Padding
  • Printed Graphics for Gym Wall Padding
  • Re-wrap existing Gym Wall Padding with new vinyl
  • Custom Cutouts in Gym Wall Padding for outlets, switches, etc.

About Us

J & J Gym Floors provides a full line of gym floor services throughout New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut.

We specialize in: gym wall padding, basketball court refinishing, gym floor screening and recoating, custom logo designs and gym floor game lines, as well as gymnasium floor maintenance, repairs, and new gym floor installations.

Our Service Area:

  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • NYC: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, Staten Island
  • Connecticut
  • Pennsylvania
  • Delaware
  • Maryland 

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basketball-court-gym-floor-layout-diagram-compressor

Basketball Court & Gym Floor Layout, Diagram and Dimensions

basketball-court-gym-floor-layout-diagram-compressor

Basketball Court & Gym Floor Layout, Diagram and Dimensions

Many customers ask what is the standard size of a basketball court.  Here we have provided basketball gym floor layouts with dimensions for High School basketball courts, NCAA basketball courts, and NBA basketball courts.  If you would like a gym floor design layout showing your schools logo and game lines please contact us. 

high school basketball court layout diagram

Download Basketball Court Layout Diagrams:

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gym floor repair company near me

Basketball Court Repairs In NJ, NY, CT, PA, DE & DE

Basketball Court Repairs In NJ, NY, CT, PA, DE & DE

Basketball courts, just like any hardwood floor, need repairs and maintenance from time to time. Over the past 16 years, we’ve repaired hundreds of gym floors because of water damage as well as general wear and tear. 

We can turn your damaged hardwood floor into a gym floor surface your team will be proud to play on. As a full-service gym floor contractor, we specialize in repairing basketball courts that are cupping or buckling. These types of surfaces require the care and experience you can count on from J & J Gym Floors.  We have the know-how and equipment to handle just about any type of basketball court flooring damage.

Our Service Area:

  • New Jersey
  • New York
  • NYC: Manhattan, Brooklyn, Bronx, Queens, Staten Island
  • Connecticut
  • Pennsylvania
  • Delaware
  • Maryland 

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gym floor refinishing

Gym Floor Refinishing Cost: 2019 Edition

gym floor refinishing

Gym Floor Refinishing Cost: 2019 Edition

What’s the cost of refinishing a basketball court gym floor?

There are definitely a few things to review before thinking about getting the best price on your gym floor refinishing project.

Refinishing a basketball court gym floor can be done for a fraction of the cost of a new court.

How much does gym floor refinishing cost?

The average price for gym floor refinishing is between $2.00 and $3.00 per square foot, depending on the cost factors listed below. This normally includes the following items: gym floor sanding and refinishing, materials, labor, logos, graphics and game line painting. 

The pricing is basically the same for basketball court refinishing as well. 

It’s a project that most schools, churches, and gymnasiums do every 7-10 years to keep the gym looking new while infusing pride into their home team.

Basketball Court Gym Floor Refinishing Cost Factors

  • Gym floor size
  • Condition of the existing basketball court finish- (amount of built-up finish to be removed)
  • If the gym floor requires repairs due to buckling, cupped, or water damaged wood
  • Design and gym floor graphics: the amount of painting to be done (game lines, lettering, logos, border, keys, etc.)
  • Geographic Location
  • Union or Prevailing Wage vs Private Project.
  • Products Used – oil based vs water based gym floor polyurethane as well as the brand of polyurethane.

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  • Established in 2003
  • +17,400 completed projects
  • Fast and professional service
  • The most knowledgable team in the industry