What Are The Different Types Of Rubber Sports Flooring?

What Are The Different Types Of Rubber Sports Flooring

If you go to any commercial gym, there’s a good chance you’ll walk on several different surfaces. The transition between these surfaces helps to differentiate different gym zones like free weight areas and sprint tracks.

Rubber sports flooring comes in all shapes and sizes. The most common flooring systems include rubber tiles and rubber rolls. These are used in different areas because they provide different levels of subfloor protection and safety.

There’s also polyurethane and vinyl flooring. Although not technically rubber, these flooring systems are best for sports halls and gymnasiums.

Here’s everything you need to know about the different types of rubber sports flooring:

Rubber tiles

  • Free weight zones
  • Functional fitness
  • Easy to install
  • East to replace single tiles

Rubber tiles are interlocking so installation is relatively simple. The most common thicknesses are 30mm and 40mm. These thicknesses provide sufficient protection to the subfloor in free weight zones so long as the subfloor is sound.

Rubber rolls

  • Functional fitness
  • Yoga and pilates
  • Cross fit
  • Seamless and easy to clean

Rubber rolls are a seamless sports flooring solution. The most common thicknesses are 10mm and 15mm. These thicknesses are suitable for functional fitness zones and areas of a gym with machines like treadmills and cable pulleys.

Polyurethane floors

  • Harder than rubber
  • Replicates hardwood
  • Best for sports halls
  • Can be marked up with court lines

Polyurethane floors are a seamless flooring solution. The surface is harder than rubber and best-suited to gymnasiums and sports halls. Polyurethane can replicate the performance of hardwood at a lower cost.

Vinyl floors

  • Adjustable elasticities
  • Can be as hard as hardwood
  • Available in a wide range of colours
  • Can be marked up with court lines

Like polyurethane, vinyl is harder than rubber. In most applications, vinyl and polyurethane are interchangeable. Vinyl is available in a wider range of elasticities, however, which means it can be adapted to suit a wider range of sports.

What’s the best rubber sports flooring?

This is a matter of use case:

  • For free weight zones, the best rubber sports flooring is interlocking tiles
  • For functional fitness zones, the best rubber sports flooring is rubber rolls
  • For sports centres, you want a hard court surface like polyurethane or vinyl

Some commercial gyms choose to use interlocking floor tiles across their floor which is absolutely fine. However, rubber is not suitable for sprint tracks and sled lanes. For these, you will want a dedicated surface.