Your Guide to the Perfect Athletics Track

Outdoor running tracks are important to encourage outdoor exercise this summer for children and adults of all ages! The perfect athletics track ideally has minimal maintenance requirements. Therefore, PlaySmart ensures that running track surface materials are safe and durable. Subsequently, we provide the best quality outdoor exercise experience for everyone.

Athletics tracks are a unique element of playground design for outdoor flooring exerts. This is because they require innovations and specific requirements across its lifespan. PlaySmart’s playground flooring experts therefore work to provide our clients with peace on the quality of their outdoor running tracks.

running track in field
What qualities does an Athletics track need to have?

Because they are long, thin surfaces subject to heavy footfall traffic, running tracks require special attention throughout installation and design. PlaySmart’s experts therefore recognise and meet these challenges head-on. Our goal is to minimize the problems with artificial grass boundaries, fading markings, and non-slip, non-accessible surfacing.

Ergonomic soft impact surface

Rubberized surfaces are increasingly popular as a choice for outdoor running tracks. Cushioning and shock absorption reduce harm to runners’ joints that can come from repeated use of improper outdoor flooring. The summer is approaching, and more people are getting out onto the athletics track. Therefore, you need to ensure they remain safe and uninjured. This is because it is primarily the responsibility of the playground design process.

Traditional asphalt or concrete surfaces can be harmful for long-distance runners or amateurs with non-ergonomic footwear. By providing a high-quality shock absorbent outdoor running track, you improve accessibility. It also helps to improve your local community’s health and wellbeing.

Red and Black JungleMulch running track
Anti-Slip Traction

In the British Summer’s traditional rain, your running track should still protect against slipping and sliding. Because, this is key to reducing the risk of accidents. Running track surface materials, like outdoor sports court materials, should provide adequate traction. However, they should also avoid being too rough and cause grazing when falls do occur.

Rubber mulch or similar rubber athletics surfaces are a great option for slip-resistance. This is because of the unique bonded formulation of the sports surface material. This also reduces noise pollution from heavy footfall. Therefore, it is growing in popularity as a premium play area surfacing.

Red rubber mulch pathway at Wycombe Abbey
Durability in colour and quality

Long-term use of running tracks should not reduce their effectiveness and safety. A high-quality athletics track should demonstrate resilience to multiple aspects of weathering that outdoor flooring can face.

Wear and tear over time can target vulnerabilities in the surface, creating cracks and eroding the edges. This can create harmful tripping hazards and rounding of the track itself, reducing the safety of runners. Therefore, outdoor flooring should be tested through exposure to sunlight rays, weathering impacts, and heavy use. This can ensure it remains useful and up to standard.

UV resistance coatings on the running track material protect from sun damage and weathering. Additionally, this protects the vibrancy of the surface colour and any running track markings.

Maintenance costs should be low to keep a running track in good condition. Cleaning is a simple process, especially for porous surfaces which reduces pudding when washed or in the event of rainfall. Any further repairs and resurfacing should therefore be minimal with quality installations and materials.

Surrounding surface materials

Heavy-use athletics tracks in public areas with limited upkeep can see damage and balding of the grass surrounding the track. This makes the site look less appealing and can pose a greater risk of slipping in muddy conditions. Therefore, hybrid grass or other AstroTurf-like options are a good way to keep your surrounding surfaces looking healthy and full.

One common problem with artificial grass is the texture. It can be uncomfortable to fall onto and can cause grass burns. Our high-quality plastic fibres therefore incorporate and promote natural grass growth alongside the artificial grass. This helps to create a soft texture while also keeping the sides of your track green year-round.

Which Surfaces do we Recommend for Your Athletics Track?

Rubber Mulch like Jungle Mulch or EPDM Mulch is a porous, durable running track surface material. This makes it perfect for longer tracks on natural grass, particularly due to its simple installation and low cost. These surfaces are available in many bright colours and designs. Therefore you can personalise your running track however you want, including vibrant sports markings built into the rubber mulch material.

Corkeen is an innovative sustainable flooring option supplied exclusively in the UK by PlaySmart. Perfect for jogging or walking paths, the two-layer system has built-in wear resistance and shock absorption in its design. This is also one of our most stable and wheelchair-accessible flooring options. Therefore, we recommend it for wider pathways and play surfaces.

Are you looking to expand your outdoor sports area beyond a quality athletics track? FlexCourt is perfect for a modular and flexible sports surface wherever you are. Create the perfect sports ground in your new playground project or next renovation. Using the best materials helps your site become the go-to community hub for fitness and sport this summer! For more information on FlexCourt including its structure, uses, and installation, you can visit our Expert Guide

Ready to make the Perfect Athletics Track your next Playground Project?

Our experts can recommend you the perfect option for your Athletics Track or sports area matched to your needs. Each playground, sports area, or leisure site is unique. Therefore, PlaySmart works to provide tailored services and installation plans to meet the challenges, hazards and requirements of any site.

Get started on your journey with PlaySmart by filling in our handy contact form at the top of this page. You can also give us a call at 01564 742811.

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