An Investment in Modular Flooring
By: Jeff Vance
Talk about challenges. A community social Friday night, basketball Saturday morning, rehearsals Saturday afternoon, worship programs Sunday…and that’s just the weekend!
We have all seen how the big arenas handle changing their setup from event to event, but how are organizations with reasonable budgets and limited staffing supposed to cope with these disparate demands?
Having a versatile and dependable flooring system that can perform well across this wide range of needs is a critical piece for smoother operations. Modular sports flooring systems are increasingly the choice of faith-based organizations for their multi-use facilities.
Modular floors were developed in the 70s as portable sports floors, but have evolved into beautiful, permanent flooring that fills many of the gaps in traditional flooring market.
Modular flooring systems are incredibly durable and versatile and fit the needs of facilities that cater to a wide variety of unique functions.
Since these floors originated in the sports environment, they are perfect for basketball, volleyball, walking areas, aerobics, yoga, Awana, general play areas, etc. Some are constructed of recycled polypropylene copolymer, and the better quality products are 100% recyclable, as well.
This flooring is chemical resistant and is not adversely affected by changes in temperature or humidity, so they are perfect for buildings that have limited or no HVAC coverage.
Modular flooring is particularly appealing to facilities with old floors that are no longer viable, or for buildings with moisture issues in the concrete slab.
Modular floors are free-floating, which means they install without glues or adhesives. This speeds the installation process, which keeps the costs low. Most installations take one or two days and can be completed by factory crews from the manufacturer.
Many organizations choose to “self-install” to keep the costs down and to keep up the community involvement and commitment to the project.
According to one church minister, “One of the most appealing aspects of modular flooring is how quickly it can be installed. From the time we ordered the floor until it was delivered, it took about three weeks. The actual installation took less than two days.”
Adhesives-free installations also provide versatility and makes self-maintenance a breeze. Any floor can be damaged, but what make modular flooring so exceptional is that individual tiles can be quickly and easily removed and replaced, without the need of expensive flooring specialists.
A damaged module anywhere in the floor can be easily fixed by in-house staff in less than two minutes. The higher-quality systems 16-year warranty and can withstand unlimited amounts of foot traffic.
Additionally, they can also accommodate considerable rolling loads of wheeled traffic. If the need arises for a scissor lift to repair a light or work on the ceiling, just drive it across the floor, as the modules can easily handle the load.
The resilient qualities of polypropylene also add to the versatility of the flooring. These systems can handle tables and chairs during a social event and will not dent from high-heeled shoes or heavy loads.
They are naturally stain, mold and mildew resistant, so they are sanitary and easy to clean. A good dust mop is perfect for most of the day-to-day cleaning, but a really dirty floor can be cleaned with a mop or an auto scrubber if needed.
From an athletic perspective, modular floors are one of the safest choices you can make for your facility. The modules are designed to have some “give” to them, which provides protection from slip/fall injuries.
Modular floors are designed to have the same grip as hardwood floors – enough to provide good play, but not so much as to unnaturally grab the athletes’ feet while playing. These floors also provide a much better level of impact protection than concrete, VCT or carpeted floors.
With the focus in our society on the long-term effects of concussions, modular flooring with shock suspension provides outstanding safety and an affordable price.
Some of the better modular flooring systems have an optional high-performance suspension system integrated into the base of the modules. These provide great comfort and the best performance available, while allowing the flooring system to “breathe.”
Over the past 18 months, there have been major developments in both the look and size of the flooring modules. Producing a flooring system that looks and performs like a true maple hardwood floor has been the holy grail of the modular flooring industry.
SnapSports Athletic Surfaces recently developed Maple TuffShield, a new technology that looks like NBA hardwood, yet has all the benefits of modular flooring. Maple TuffShield is a patented process that produces an extremely durable, high-gloss finish and is available is both light and dark maple colors. The TuffShield process is done in the factory during the molding process and is fully covered by the manufacturer’s 16-year warranty.
SnapSports also just announced Maple Pro36, the largest module flooring system in the world. Pro36 was originally developed for NBA fan events and is nine square feet, making it nine times the size of the nearest competitor.
These larger modules reduce the number of seams in an average gym by 80 percent and provide a more elegant, finished look and feel. Pro36 is available in each light and dark maple colors and can be ordered with the optional high-performance suspension system.
These new giant panels really are a game changer and are worth considering for your next flooring purchase.
This article is about value – and how an investment in modular flooring can provide great value to numerous groups inside your organization.
Robust modular flooring is versatile enough to accommodate nearly any activity and ensures a safe, fun environment for your athletes.
Its low cost, ease of installation, low maintenance, and great durability make it a sound fiscal choice, while its vast color and style options make it appealing to users.
It’s easy to see why modular flooring is routinely the best all-around flooring choice for multi-use facilities.
Jeff Vance is global sales manager for SnapSports Athletic Surfaces, www.snapsports.com.