Sports Surface Testing: 201 Force Reduction Requirements – Indoor Surfaces

Field Testing Running Track: Nike Beaverton, Oregon

The article Sports Surface Testing 101 introduced the methods and calculations used to measure force reduction levels. This article will explore the requirements established in a number of standards for indoor sport surfaces.

There most common standards that establish requirements for force reduction in North America are DIN 18032-2 (1991 and 2001), EN 14904, ASTM F2772, ASTM F2157 and ANSI E1.26. The International Federation of Basketball (FIBA), and the International Association of Athletic Federations (IAAF) have also established requirements, and the trade organization The Maple Floor Manufacturers Association (MFMA) has established requirements in their PUR standard.

Some standards simply establish a pass/fail level, others establish performance types or classes. Many of the standards (the 1991 version of DIN 18032-2, IAAF, and ASTM F2157 do not mention uniformity requirements) require the results to be within +/- 5% of the average value. Some of the standards set requirements based on the average and others apply performance requirements to every point tested. I have created a master document that readers can download (simply click here).

There is only one standard that ever provided different performance levels for testing in the lab and on-site. That standard was DIN 18032-2 (1991). It allowed the results in the field to be 1% to 3% lower than they were in the lab. Many specifications include a minimum allowable level such as 53% for force reduction. If manufacturers and architects and owners want to be sure their floor meets that minimum performance level they should select floors that have higher force reduction levels so that the system can accommodate slight deviations like board length, nail frequency, finishing, and uneven slabs and still have a reasonable chance of meeting the specified minimum value.

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