Sustainable fitness flooring has come a long way in terms of appearance, variety and performance. It used to be made strictly from black tire rubber or SBR. In some cases, rubber flooring now consists of not only black tire rubber, but also recycled sneakers and steering wheels! The amount of material that can be recycled has grown exponentially over the years.
Rubber flooring that is made from post-consumer and post-industrial recycled content is arguably the most sustainable fitness flooring on the market. That’s because it’s made from scrap-tire rubber. And, rather than these tires going into a landfill, they are being repurposed and made into rubber flooring.
Some rubber flooring manufacturers also offer reclamation programs, which gives customers the opportunity to send back old or remnant recycled rubber back to the rubber flooring company’s manufacturing facility. These reclaimed materials are then used to make new flooring, underlayments and industrial products.
The benefits of using green rubber flooring are numerous. In addition to being sustainable, rubber flooring promotes good indoor air quality and a healthy environment. As proof of its positive environmental attributes, rubber flooring can help facilities earn environmentally-friendly certifications. This includes contributing to Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) points, as well as FloorScore and Collaborative for High Performance Schools (CHPS) certifications.
With NRC values ranging from 0.05 to 0.15, rubber flooring also contributes to creating a comfortable acoustic space, significantly more than other hard surfaces such as tile or terrazzo. Other rubber flooring benefits include: ergonomic factors, such as sound control and anti-fatigue qualities, durability, slip resistance and being easy to install and maintain. Recycled rubber is also inherently anti-microbial; therefore, resisting things like bacterial attacks.
Bo Barber is the Vice President of Sales & Marketing for ECORE International. He can be reached at email@example.com or 800.322.1923.