Case Study : Doing it Right the First Time
The owner of a large Manhattan gym confided that our's was going to be the third flooring they installed in less than two years of operation. Against his better judgment, they had originally installed an inexpensive carpet throughout the gym. “I knew it wouldn’t last, but with a tight budget I opted for a couple of additional pieces of equipment rather than going with rubber flooring.” Within three months the carpeting was tearing and after six months needed to be replaced. “It was creating a tripping hazard for club members, so we closed the gym for two days, pulled up the carpeting, and installed inexpensive black, recycled rubber pads wall to wall in the gym. I wasn’t thrilled with the appearance of the black pads, but having just paid for new carpeting six months ago, I didn’t want to put any more money into the floor.”
After re-opening the gym, the club members complained about the flooring. The black pads were “cheap” and of low quality, unattractive, inconsistently sized, creating gaps between the mats that – in addition to being visually unappealing- created tripping hazards for the members and liability concerns for the gym. Additionally, the flooring had a very strong, used-tire smell, which he was told would diminish over time, but never did. He was advised to keep open the windows to increase the circulation and help air out the room and the mats, but the gym was below ground with no windows, and members continued to complain about the unpleasant smell.
That is when he turned to us. “I knew your virgin rubber tiles were the correct choice from the beginning, but I was trying to hold to my original budget for flooring.” He closed his gym again, removed the recycled pads, and installed our Olympic Grade Hammer Lock virgin rubber floor tiles. “Had I known then what I know now, my original decision would have been different. Having a safe, durable, attractive, problem- free floor is as important to a health club and its’ members as having the right fitness equipment.”
Case Study Two : Know What You Don’t Want
The Facilities Director for a prominent university had spent his professional career in and around collegiate fitness centers, both as a participant and an administrator, traveling extensively to college campuses throughout the country. He experienced first hand the best and the worst in fitness center layout and design, and when he had the opportunity to participate from the ground up in the development of a state of the art student recreation center, he had some definite ideas about what kind of flooring he didn’t want.
He did not want individual “islands” of rubber flooring under some but not all of the fitness equipment. “Changes in level from floor to rubber mats create potential trip hazards – particularly with the thick mats used in the free weight areas – and severely limit the opportunity to reconfigure the equipment in the room.” He was seeking heavy-duty rubber flooring that would go wall to wall in the room and be sufficiently thick to allow him the flexibility to move equipment anywhere in the room, including the free weights.
He did not want glue down rubber flooring. “Glue down floorings present the opportunity for adhesive failure- particular in high moisture/ high humidity areas. Repairs to glue- down floors are difficult, time consuming and often result in an unsightly ‘patched’ appearance in the repaired areas.” He was seeking a loose lay rubber tile that would allow for simple installation and simple repair of tiles that became damaged through excessive abuse or even vandalism.
He did not want a floor with a surface wear layer that would wear through in high traffic areas. “We will have students using this facility 20 hours a day- year round- and I do not want to be replacing this floor in three or four years.”
He did not want a floor that provided the limited color options afforded by recycled black rubber with chips of “flecked” colors. “We want a floor that will not only last for years but that will be a beautiful part of the overall appearance of our facility. This fitness center will be used by men and women alike, and we are seeking a flooring that enhances the appearance of our facility.”
The university selected our ultra heavy duty Olympic Grade Power Lock tiles in a striking three color pattern, made possible by its’ unique “seamless” interlocking system. Our virgin rubber compound provides solid color throughout the full 9/16” thickness of the tiles and, like all of our products, is installed without adhesive. The university floor has been installed for over nine years and continues to provide a safe, trip-free surface.