Reaction Post to news article on cities/organizations/sports using artifical grass
In the 20th century, everyone has an opinion about everything. With the rapid increase of information available on the internet, it’s hard to distinguish what to trust.
And what not to.
Here, we’ve discussed a few pros and cons of having artificial grass as a playing field for sports. And we’ve compiled snippets from news articles for your reference. This is to give you more information about artificial grass and if it can be a good alternative, should you be looking for one.
Pros and Cons of Having Artificial Turf on Sports Fields
Sports played on grass nowadays are shifting to artificial turf athletic fields instead of natural grass. If you’ve checked out newer all sports artificial turf fields, you’d see the technological advancement from the older ones. This is because the old “turf” grass used to look like a mat of pale-colored hairs resting on rubber. But because of research and developments, these transformed into beautiful blades of grass-like green that cannot be distinguished from the real thing anymore.
Artificial turf soccer fields are popping up all over the country. FIFA even approves of high-quality artificial grass for football to be played on. Local governments also support the installation of these fields, mostly because artificial turf sports fields cost less than maintaining one of natural grass.
Pros of Artificial Sports Turf:
1. Little to no maintenance
When we say little to no maintenance, we don’t only take into account the water and gas you save on mowers. We also think about the people exerting effort into making your field playable. Compared to the alternative, artificial turf sports field maintenance requires fewer resources, fewer expenses and definitely less time. But of course, the no watering, no pesticides, and no mowing factors are great too, right?
2. More games are playable; artificial grass needs no rest
This is one of the most beloved features of athletes, coaches, and schools alike. It’s no secret that athletes of different sports aren’t able to fully utilize their schools’ field. This is because, with natural grass, there is always a need for downtime.
Especially during the rainy season, a lot of teams are unable to play on natural grass fields. This is because playing once on a muddy surface can ruin the field all season. But because of artificial grass, all the players have a chance to play, even on rainy days. No more game cancellations to trigger tantrums from excited tots! Games can be played right on schedule, no matter the weather. When spring and fall come, no one has to deal with having to play on wilted grass.
3. It’s safer to play on
The latest artificial turf fields cause less friction to human skin compared to natural grass. This means less friction burns, cuts, and other injuries usually caused by playing surfaces with real grass. It’s also safer to play on whenever there’s rainfall because there won’t be any change in the surface’s texture. No more having to worry about digging onto the surface and getting stuck. No mud gripping the player’s shoes making it hard for them to move too!
Artificial grass brands like MegaGrass also go above and beyond to ensure safety. By offering lead-free, toxin-free and emission-free grass, MegaGrass safeguards your athletes’ health and well-being!
Cons of Artificial Sports Turf:
1. Heats up (like every other thing exposed to the sun)
Global warming is a legit thing. Temperatures now rise in some parts of the Earth at 54 degrees Celsius. That’s more than half the temperature needed to boil water. It’s one of the downsides of plastic: it gets hot faster than a bed of real grass. But that doesn’t mean natural grass doesn’t. If you’re in the shade, or in an indoor field, this won’t be a problem.
2. Water run-off is undetected
Another shortcoming of artificial grass is that they’re full of fibers. Over time, some of these fibers get pulled out. Strong winds and rainwater can carry them into streams and waterways. These are little blades of plastic that can contaminate your community’s water system.
In The News
WECT News reported on February 2019 that Brunswick County High schools (North, West, and South) are proposing to make a switch to artificial turf sports fields.
This is because “Despite additional expense and effort, the quality of [our] stadium grass remains subpar due to overuse,” and “Proposal writers said [they] did not find any data that turf could cause an increase in injury or illness.”
In addition, New Hanover High School, which plays and practices on artificial turf, has seen a decrease in injuries, according to the athletic director.
In April 2019, the Board of Directors of Brunswick voted unanimously to approve the change.
The newly installed grass field would greatly benefit the kids in Brunswick High School. The school pays too much for maintenance, and still end up with overused grass which isn’t always ready for play. In making the switch to artificial grass, the school also made the shift to commit to all the sports they use the field for.
Football, soccer, lacrosse, track, marching bands and others are the main activities the field caters to.
Unfortunately, in a natural grass field, the usage is not always balanced. Football is usually given preference, and the other sports aren’t always given enough time for practice or games. However, now that artificial grass is installed, there’s no more need for downtime to let the grass rest. The kids can start playing soccer just right after a football game. This means more time for training, more time for the kids to enjoy themselves too!
In Weymouth, Massachusetts, the Mayor spearheaded projects to improve 13 outdoor recreational facilities in their community. Included in these projects is the Libby Field, an artificial grass baseball field.
“It’s been said before, but I think it says it all: Weymouth has gone from some of the worst playing fields to among the best on the South Shore,” said Mayor Robert Hedlund. “Students of baseball deserve the same opportunities as their football, soccer, and lacrosse peers to practice and perform on a state-of-the-art field provided by their community. This new park is the first artificial-turf baseball diamond in our town’s history. It’s among the finest ball fields in the region, and it’s what our high school and youth baseball players deserve in a ballpark – one that’s equal in quality and opportunity to the fields available at Legion and Lovell.”
Since Libby Field’s opening in April 2018, the park has been used for 200 baseball games and practices. With at least one game played every weeknight and lots of games on weekends, Libby continuously caters to the high school students of Massachusetts’ baseball games. All these without having to give the grass any time to rest.
And the best thing about this is “Fall Ball” is now popular because a high-quality playing surface is now installed in the field instead of wilting natural grass.
So many sports all over the country are being played more by kids of all ages because of artificial grass. The days when fields are hogged by a chosen few are over. Now, since the fields are always playable, more teams and players can enjoy them!
In 2018 Linden High School in Michigan switched from natural grass to an artificial grass turf field. They added shock pads underneath to add safety so when the student-athletes fall, there’s a little more cushion to break the fall.
One of the benefits of artificial grass fields is you can install a shock pad beneath the grass. Since natural grass surfaces have unpredictable growth and level, athletes won’t be able to properly calculate their moves. It would be difficult for them to know which parts are hard and which are wet. Especially after rainfall.
Artificial grass fields of the 20th-century function like natural grass. Studies even show that players perform better in artificial grass surfaces. They found that sprinting and turning are “significantly better” on artificial turf, too. Changing directions while moving is easier due to the players “being able to generate more force from the surface.”
Gone are the days when artificial grass is viewed as an unworthy alternative. Turf for playing fields have changed so much since its introduction in 1966. The fact that FIFA allows their games to be played on artificial grass is a testament to the progress it has made as a playing surface.
Although health deterioration and physical injury are still both real and pressing concerns, they can be lessened. Toxin-free and lead-free grass is also available in the market. Falls can now be broken instead of bones because of shock pads. Flexibility and last-second decisions in the field are also supported by the surface. As an athlete, artificial turf’s got everything you’d want in a playing field.
Install artificial grass of the 20th century in your field, or right in your home.
Explore your options with the Grass of the Future: MegaGrass.