The heated sports debate regarding the benefits of natural grass compared to synthetic turf has been stirring for years now. Americans take their sports very seriously, and activities ranging from football to lacrosse rely upon a solid grass surface.
Artificial turf, also known as synthetic turf and artificial grass, differs drastically from regular grass. Turf is made out of synthetic fibers and used on athletic fields to provide surfaces ready for play year-round, rain or shine. It offers a host of benefits that make it much more appealing to sports fans and athletes alike.
More than anything else, artificial turf is durable. Unlike natural grass fields, which can’t sustain more than 3 or 4 days of use per week, and are always closed after heavy rains, artificial fields possess strategic drainage systems that make them available even during inclimate weather. Increased playability means more access for all athletes eager to practice and play their favorite sports.
Synthetic fields are also reliably smooth and free of the potholes and dips that are inevitable after heavy play on natural grass. Since turf doesn’t warp or break during use, players are much less likely to trip or lose balance and sustain an injury.
Believe it or not, synthetic turf is incredibly friendly to the environment- dramatically more so than natural grass! According to Penn State University, renowned across the country for its college football program, the upkeep of a natural grass football field is exceedingly demanding on environmental resources.
Artificial turf, on the other hand, does not require sunlight, watering, or fertilizer. That’s more than 500,000 gallons of water saved per year when the transfer is made to turf! Many turf adversaries will try to claim that the use of rubber infill damages the environment, but most rubber actually comes from recycled tires that otherwise would have been stuffed into landfills for the rest of eternity.
Lower Costs and Maintenance
Though initial installation is more expensive, the lower long term maintenance costs ultimately result in large savings. Synthetic fields usually pay for themselves within four years, which is a highly cost-effective investment considering that turf is meant to last 10 years or more. The brushing, very light watering, and minor pest control required for turf costs significantly less than the thousands upon thousands of dollars needed for the water, fertilizer, mowing, and seeding of regular grass.