Currently, there are at least 40-45 million square feet of synthetic grass installed in the United States. This is used in landscaping, playgrounds, and sports fields. If you are considering converting your school's play area to synthetic grass, you should make sure you understand five vital issues.
Do You Need Abrasion Reduction?
Most suppliers offer various levels of quality to fit your needs and your budget. To cover large areas where the risk of slipping and falling is relatively low, you may want to pursue an economy line of synthetic grass. This grass tends to be shorter, and while it looks good, it offers little protection against abrasion.
If there will be children running and playing regularly in the area, such as a sports field or a playground, you will need to pay more for mid-range or high quality synthetic grass. These grasses tend to be longer and softer. If a child is playing with shorts on, they are less likely to get what is known as 'turf burn' with a higher quality synthetic grass.
Do You Need Impact Damage Reduction?
Most sports and aesthetic applications of synthetic grass will not require impact damage reduction. However, if you are installing synthetic grass at a playground, you will have to consider how you will reduce the risk of broken bones and concussions if a child jumps or falls from a great height. With synthetic grass, it is easy and cost-efficient to add a shock pad beneath the grass. These pads are made of rubber and foam and decrease the chance of injury due to impact.
Shock pads vary in thickness, with the thickest usually around 5 centimeters. Your supplier can help you calculate the correct thickness for your playground based on the height of the elements in the playground and the average size of the children using the equipment. You may decide to add extra padding beneath problem areas, such as swings and jungle gyms, while choosing a cheaper, thinner option for the rest of the playground.
Is Realism Important?
High quality synthetic grass is available in multi-toned versions that mimic natural grass. However, they are also often available in a variety of fun, bright colors as well. Many schools want their fields and play areas to look as natural as possible, while others create a fantasy land or support school spirit by ordering vibrant colors.
Before you make a decision, you should consult your students and their parents about the type of play areas they prefer. You may find that some parents prefer artificial grass to not look realistic in order to avoid confusion in younger children.
What Will the Weather Be Like When the Grass Is Used?
The binding material in artificial grass can cause the temperature to rise considerably in the area where it is placed. If you place synthetic grass in an area where there is little shade and plan to use it during the hotter part of the year, you should discuss options for keeping the play area cool with your supplier. They may be able to suggest a different binding or fill material or a color that reflects heat as opposed to absorbing it.
If you are using synthetic grass on a hot day, you should make sure all children are well-hydrated and take necessary breaks to maintain a healthy body temperature.
Which Ages Will Use the Grass?
There are currently some debates about the safety of synthetic grass, especially among younger children who may ingest the fill material between the blades of grass. The most common concern is lead in the synthetic material. If you are purchasing synthetic grass for use by young children, you will want to consider the lead-free options available to assure the safety of your users.
Synthetic grass can be a low-maintenance choice for a safe play area, but it is important that you select the correct quality and type of grass for your users, so make sure you're working with an experienced installation company.Share
13 July 2015
When my husband and I bought our house years ago, we thought it would be our "starter" home and we would move in a few years. We soon had two children, and we then decided against moving since we live in a great school district and we love our neighbors. However, I was growing very tired of the appearance of our home. We painted it a different color, and it still seemed like the "same old house" that we were tired of. We finally deciding that maybe good landscaping would "do the trick" and make our home more enjoyable to use again. We were right, and I now love our home! I now love spending time in our yard and just enjoying the scenery. I have such a passion for landscaping now I decided to create a blog about it. I plan to share many landscaping tips, so come back!