Artificial Grass – Factors to consider
One of the most common problems we come across here at Morgan Sports Solutions is the perception people have of artificial grass is that one size fits all no matter what sport you are participating in. I have lost count how many variations of artificial grass there are depending on quality, pile height, pile weight, playing characteristics, infill requirements, whether a shockpad is required or not.
There are many different questions we ask our customers including what is the surface going to be used for, who will be using the surface, will you be hiring the pitch out to other sports clubs/schools, what use will the pitch get e.g. hours, do you require lighting, do you require netting, which inlaid lines do you require, what standards are you working towards. Often, particularly with schools when the question of which sports will be used there can be several. The question then is what will be the most dominant sport and this can often be the deciding factor as to what surface you go with. Although for schools, the flexibility a hockey pitch will give you is great as you can include football, tennis, basketball and netball lines along with your hockey lines.
So when you are deciding on what to do with that green space at the back of your sports clubs that is un-usable throughout the winter due to drainage issues, have a think about what that area could be used for and how best could you generate a revenue stream for your club.
Other factors that you have to consider is the maintenance of the artificial pitch once completed. This is often overlooked by the sports club which can be costly if the correct maintenance procedures are not in place. The installation company will provide you with a maintenance programme but you should have this maintenance programme detailed before you even decide to construct an artificial pitch. You will need to factor this into your yearly budget. Often, especially with sports capital grants, a club is awarded the funds to construct a pitch – which is great! but forget to take into account that they may need to purchase machinery or bring in an outside contractor to undertake the yearly maintenance of the pitch. If a maintenance programme is not adhered to properly, this can be to the detriment of the surface and will also affect your warranty – so be very careful!! Obviously other factors such as electricity costs, labour costs, admin etc… need to be taken into account.
As always if you require any information on artificial or natural sports surfaces please don’t hesitate to contact the office – all advice is FREE!!
Feel free to comment on the above article, i have only touched on the factors to consider when deciding to construct an artificial sports pitch.