When selecting sports surfacing, safety is a key consideration. Rarely is a sports floor used for just one purpose. You need to keep in mind both primary and secondary uses of the floor as well as the athlete and non-athletic users.
Questions to keep in mind:
- Does this floor meet the biomechnical needs of its intended uses?
- Is there proper cushion for impact?
- Is it too slippery? Not slippery enough?
- Does it accommodate a wide range of users?
- Are there any protrusions that can cause a hazard?
Best flooring choices match up a sport’s action with the surface’s response. Here are the four main biomechanical needs.
Running - When athletes run, they apply concentrated weight on a floor. The sports floor should react in way that increases comfort and reduces the likelihood of injury.
Jumping - A sports floor needs to absorb a degree of shock generated by a jumping athlete as he or she lands on the floor. A consistent surface is also important to help avoid injuries.
Pivoting - This involves turning of the foot on the surface of the floor. A sports floor must provide uniform surface friction to make this motion safe and easy for the athlete.
Dribbling - Key in basketball, a sports floor should provide an adequate amount of ball bounce that is uniform across the floor surface.
By sport, here is a breakdown of safety and biomechanical considerations:
|Track and field||Running
Reference: 2003 Recreation Management
A sports floor is a significant investment. You should choose a floor that covers all the features you need while providing safety and protection against the stresses on limbs and joints.