Outdoor Running Tracks: Which Surface is Right For Me?

Running is an exercise enjoyed the world over, and has a multitude of proven health benefits. Here at PlaySmart, we’re often asked for our recommendations for outdoor running tracks, and the article below will take you through everything you need to know.

Why it’s more important now than ever to get kids moving again

The Covid-19 pandemic affected each and every one of us, but children have been particularly hard hit. The closures of schools, social distancing regulations and multiple national lockdowns have all played a part in halting children’s social, academic and active development. With life now slowly returning back to somewhat normality (touch wood!), it is time to start helping children get back into regular exercise and healthy habits.

Why install an outdoor running track at a school?

Running has a long proven history of providing both health and social benefits to children, not only improving their fitness and building stronger hearts and muscles, but also helping them socialise with their classmates by using it as a group activity. Here at PlaySmart, we recognise that these factors are of great benefit to children’s overall health, which is why we are happy to provide running tracks as part of our safety surfacing range.

How can I afford an outdoor running track?

The government allocates funding (the PE and sports premium) for the purpose of bettering and furthering PE and sports in school, which can be put towards new equipment, surfaces and so on. With your grant, this can be used for installing a running track at your school, and PlaySmart are here to help!

Do I have to be a school to get an outdoor running track?

Running is an exercise that is good for both physical and mental health in people of all ages. Whilst running tracks are traditionally requested by schools and PE departments, they can be implemented in a wide range of venues such as:

  • Parks and recreation grounds
  • Embankments and tree surrounds
  • Paths/trails

Sold exclusively in the UK through PlaySmart, JungleMulch is an environmentally-friendly surfacing made from recycled tyres to give it the look of natural bark. Available in a wide range of colours, it provides an aesthetically pleasing factor for your surfacing needs. But how does it feature as our recommended running track surface of choice? 

JungleMulch Background

As is expected with surfaces intended for running, JungleMulch is a water permeable surface, providing peace of mind when it comes to slip hazards and puddling problems. The bonded rubber material is not only slip resistant but also fully wheelchair and buggy accessible, meaning everybody can get involved with your new running track! JungleMulch also helps suppress those pesky weeds but accommodates for tree and plant growth, meaning you can have a natural looking setting without the hassle of weed maintenance.

Find out more about JungleMulch by downloading our brochure!

Green Frog Artificial Grass

Green Frog Artificial Grass is an aesthetically pleasing alternative to traditional turf, providing a realistic looking product that comes with a whole host of added benefits. Its main attraction is how perfect it looks all year round, withstanding the elements and heavy footfall, making it a perfect surface for an outdoor track.

artificial grass installation

When debating if certain surfaces are right for your track, you will naturally consider safety aspects, as running can sometimes result in injuries. With real grass, you run the risk of slipping and falling on wet grass or muddy patches, and other surfacing alternatives may be too rough to cushion a landing properly without scratching you.

Green Frog provides a safe, attractive appeal, with its rapid drainage technology and strong durable makeup that means it remains beautiful come rain or shine. Built to last, heavy footfall makes little to no impact on the grass, meaning everyone can enjoy your beautiful new outdoor running track all year long!

If you have any questions we haven’t answered, please get in touch using the contact form below and we’ll be more than happy to help!

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