The Flooring ‘Wow Factor’

Gymnasiums in schools, universities and recreation centers are increasingly viewed as a symbol of pride. They embody the school colors, mascot and design of the school, and become the calling card that is viewed by athletes, spectators, alumni and sports fans. Having a floor that is instantly recognizable calls attention to the school and the facility — and this signature statement floor has a “wow factor.” Here are the best ways to create a statement floor with the help of your sports floor contractor: 

Surfaces

The type and grade of maple flooring you choose to install in your facility can help make your floor stand out. There are two different types of maple flooring: strip flooring or parquet flooring.  Strip flooring is the most traditional type of flooring installed in athletic facilities. Strip flooring consists of random length flooring strips or finger-jointed flooring strips, which are made up of random length segments that are finger jointed into flooring strips. Parquet flooring is manufactured in square and rectangular panels in a variety of dimensions. Using a variation in maple wood grades can create definition in the floor without compromising play or performance. For example, first grade maple can be used on the primary playing surface with contrasting third and better maple on the perimeter for a statement effect. Or, using parquet in unique patterns can create a floor as cognizable as the Boston Garden.

Incorporating maple and synthetic surfaces is another design aspect that can showcase your athletic surface. The use of maple flooring for your main athletic surface, which is then surrounded with a synthetic surface like a running track or other athletic surface, incorporates well together to give that unique appearance other facilities just can’t match.

Stain 

For years, staining maple flooring proved problematic due to its tight grain pattern. However, with advancements in application methods, and combining stains with floor finish sealers, it has allowed staining to be an effective application to make your maple floor stand out. Stain can be used on the entire surface or used to highlight basketball key areas — inside three-point lines, and on center jump circles or logos. Make sure you use a contractor that is experienced in using staining products on maple floors and ask for references where they have successfully used stain.

Paint 

Game lines and logos have been applied using paint for decades. However, the use of stencils has allowed sport floor installation contractors to get creative designs applied, even if they are not considered a Picasso with a paint brush.

Vinyl Graphics 

The use of vinyl graphics is becoming more commonplace and the results are spectacular. The amount of detail and intricate features computer designed artwork is able to print is amazing. Use any or a combination of these methods to give your floor that “wow factor.”

For more information, email mfma@maplefloor.org or visit maplefloor.org

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