The Rise of Artificial Turf in Sport
In 1981 West London football club, Queens Park Rangers, took the revolutionary step to transform their football pitch into one made of artificial grass.
At the time this was indeed a ‘game-changing’ plan. The benefits were obviously apparent – cost savings would be achieved owing to matches no longer being disrupted by bad weather, and fixture backlogs would be a thing of the past. However, the installation also had its critics. Did it slow the game down, did it give teams an unfair advantage and did it place players at risk of injury?
Thirty years on, lessons have been learnt and technology has greatly improved. Today, the majority of Premiership football teams have installed third generation (3G) hybrid pitches and they’re also a feature in our national sporting stadiums at Wembley and Twickenham. A combination of natural grass and strong synthetic textures designed for durability and created by installing artificial grass on top of soil, these surfaces have now been approved for use by major sporting bodies.
Gone are the days of waterlogged, muddy pitches and the inconvenience of cancelled matches. Here we take a brief look at how the rise of artificial turf has benefited other individual sporting sectors too.
Synthetic grass for putting greens, target greens, driving ranges and fairways provides a smooth, hard-wearing surface for year-round play. It’s practical, low maintenance, and most importantly does not hinder ball movement. Golf clubs can now reap the benefits of continued revenue during the winter period.
At both domestic and international levels, almost all hockey matches are now played on artificial grass pitches. Innovations in technology have resulted in synthetic turf (available in a range of colours) providing fast playing, smooth ball roll, increased player safety and ultimately a more exciting game.
Artificial turf surfaces for tennis courts advantage all players. It comes in a range of piles suitable for all, it’s far less slippery in wet weather and dries out well. Available in a range of colours, as well as a clay surface, synthetic turf is particularly resilient. Markings do not fade in sunlight, it withstands vigorous play and is less prone to damage than traditional grass surfaces. Today, most professional global tournaments are played on artificial turf. ensuring play continues in the event of bad weather.
Rugby pitches needs to be tough, practical and withstand impact. Today, most professional teams play on synthetic pitches as these guarantee safety for players performing fast paced tackles and manoeuvres. Third generation pitches are attractive, require little maintenance and improve safety and performance.
AsGoodAsGrass understand the specific requirements our clients demand. We’ve provided synthetic sports grass surfaces to meet the individual needs of many sporting and leisure environments, as well as local nurseries, schools, playgrounds, training academies and professional sports clubs. Our products have been tested to meet professional standards and we supply and install services suited to most sporting disciplines.
Our friendly AsGoodAsGrass specialist team are always delighted to give information, advice and quotations and discuss how our products can enhance any domestic, commercial or leisure surface. If you need more information though about any of our products, feel free to have a quick read of all of our frequently asked questions about astro turf.