“Anytime I walk into a fitness space and see carpet….I cringe, it amazes me how much I actually see out there! Right away I point out that carpet is a no-no for many reasons! And it’s not just aesthetics. There are real concerns putting equipment and people using it on carpeted flooring. Then I identify for my customers the value of performance flooring.” That’s from Tricia Weston, Heartline’s New England Territory Manager. She has a long background in opening and managing membership gyms – and she’s an athlete herself. She knows of what she speaks.
First, there are 4 types of performance* flooring designed for fitness spaces:
- Bounce Vinyl – eg, in luxury spaces
- UltraTile – a rubber tile more commonly used; typically used in free weight areas
- Turf* – while commonly used in athletic and community rec facilities it’s finding its way into more M-F properties you may think
- Rolled Rubber – 3mm thick rubber with a 1 mm underlayment; least expensive but generally very little support in a fitness center or athletic environment. Plus, there is no sound or vibration dampening benefits with this choicer
*Performance flooring.” Is an industry term and, for our purposes here, is used for any flooring you can put in a fitness center that isn’t carpet. (At Heartline we don’t even sell or install carpet.)
Some flooring options you may not have considered (or heard of):
- Rubberized floor — It comes in the faux wood grain that so looks great. But it’s mostly known as that black and white (or blue) speckled floor.
- The “puzzle-piece” floor – this can be used in large spaces as well as small. Different thicknesses are available. One great benefit is it’s easy to fix any damage or staining; just pop that tile out and put in a new one.
So, why performance flooring vs. carpet? Tricia shares these reasons:
- It can extend the life of your fitness equipment – it sounds unlikely but what most don’t know is that there are feet under cardio equipment . Rubber flooring holds the feet in place while in use; carpet won’t hold, there’s a slip factor, the feet can come off “buried” in the carpet – that will damage the belt and the deck, with no protection from the feet; eventually the motor will fry. Plus, it will even rip, stretch and tear the carpet.
- More comfortable and potentially lower injury rate – carpet provides very ow-shock absorption. You will feel the difference right away when you test them side-by-side.
- It’s safer than carpet – carpet has tripping hazards and bacteria build up.
- It’s easier to maintain – spills and stains are easier to clean up, no vacuuming, no pilling or “shedding.”
- It’s cleaner – carpet retains odor, germs and stains easily.
The final word from Tricia, “It [carpet] is just all around gross.” She recommends that properties carpet their apartments or condos, just don’t use it in your fitness center. (You’ll still get a great deal on all that square footage of carpet!)
If you want to see the cost to put performance flooring in your fitness center, contact us with the square footage, and if you can, a drawing of the layout (even hand drawn on piece of paper) , so we can see if there are any sharp angles or other features that might add to or take away from the cost. We’ll get you a price. There’s no commitment. You can just pin that number up for when you’re going to make changes to your space anyway. (Prices are only good for 30 days, but they can be updated any time.)
Contact your Heartline rep if you know her or him or email us at [email protected]. We’re happy to help you envision a newer, better fitness center –with the right flooring — whether it’s for right now, next year or several years down the road.