One of the most important areas of any fitness center is the flooring. Flooring manufacturers continue to introduce high-performance, low-maintenance gym flooring options for every area of the fitness facility. As a gym owner, it’s crucial to pick flooring that meets standards for performance, safety, upkeep and durability, as well as fits your expectations for budget, surface usage and long-term customer service.
Here is some of the more popular gym flooring options available:
Rubber flooring is the most common gym flooring solution installed in commercial gyms today. The most common form of rubber flooring installed is rolled recycled rubber flooring. Made from old tires, rubber flooring works great as a fitness equipment mat and can be used in a variety of applications with little or no trouble. A reclaimed rubber surface provides excellent support and effectively provides a cushion for high impact activities. One of the more famous gyms, the popular NBC reality show, “The Biggest Loser,” features Elephant Bark rubber gym flooring and Eco-Sport rubber exercise flooring tiles from Rubber-Cal.
Commercial grade carpet is another popular gym floor option because of its price, ease of cleaning and maintenance and durability. Another reason carpet is favored is its wide choice of design and color options. Carpet tiles are another gym flooring option that is trending due to their ease of installation and custom design options. Modular carpet tiles come in a wide variety of colors, patterns and textures giving you the flexibility to mix and match — not just colors, but also styles, fibers and shapes. A growing number of gyms are installing modular carpet tiles in office areas and entryways.
Hard surfaces are making their way into the yoga and Pilates rooms, as well as group exercise rooms. Incorporating wood flooring — particularly maple and beech — adds a lot of appeal, since so many members utilize these rooms. Change also is relatively quick and easy in these spaces, with most flooring installed in a day. Bamboo flooring has also gained attention. Although not a hardwood, bamboo maintains all of the properties of traditional woods in that it can be sanded and refinished a number of times over its lifetime, and it shares the same surface hardness as maple or oak. Performance testing also indicates that the material behaves the same as any hardwood flooring on any of the safety standards tests. It also carries a unique Asian aesthetic, with the “knuckles” that are characteristic of bamboo, easily visible in the surface.
Perhaps the most exciting gym flooring option is the floor of the future: ASB Glass Floors. Developed in Europe and originally designed for the sport of squash, the ASB glass floor is said to be the most advanced flooring system in the world. Its unique aluminum substructure and the custom-made surface of the glass deliver a floor ideal for a sports floor but also for use in any gym. The electronic gym floor can display marking lines for various sports — badminton, basketball, apparatus gymnastics, indoor soccer, indoor hockey, handball and volleyball. Made from layers of toughened glass coated in an ultra-strong, anti-skid laminate, the smart floor lights up with different court markings at the touch of a button, eliminating the dizzying number of lines that may be painted on a gym floor, which are confusing and distracting. The specially manufactured glass panels are also extremely durable and the floors have been constructed in such a way that resilience, ball bounce and even traction meet international safety standards.