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Case Study: New Action Synchro Synthetic Sports Flooring Transforms the St. Sebastian School Gymnasium

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It’s incredible how an updated sports floor gives an old gymnasium a major facelift. We recently helped St. Sebastian Church and School in Bessemer, Michigan, renovate its gym using our newest synthetic sports surface, Action Synchro. The results were impressive.

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Action Floor Systems® is always looking to expand our selection of products to better meet the needs of our customers and the people they serve. Action Floors Vice President of Sales Ron Fenhaus says this new pad and pour system provides plenty of value.

“We’re eager to introduce Action Synchro because it builds on our product offerings and allows us to work with K-12 schools and other facilities that are in search of an affordable, multi-use synthetic floor system,” he says.

Cory Corullo, Action Floors’ synthetic sports flooring expert, identified St. Sebastian as an ideal location for field testing Action Synchro. We donated the materials and labor to help the community while using the installation to simultaneously develop training for this new system.

“St. Sebastian is part of the group of small towns in Northern Wisconsin and Upper Michigan that make up the community around Action Floors,” Corullo explains. “We knew we wanted to do a test floor somewhere, and I picked this gymnasium because it was right next to my hometown, and I remember playing on it as a kid.”

The Challenge

St. Sebastian is home to a local Head Start program and a daycare. Tri-parish Secretary Michelle Fink says children between the ages of three and six years old use the gymnasium on a regular basis. However, the existing floor consisted of dingy, 60-year-old vinyl tile. Fink says it presented health and safety concerns.

In addition to sports, recreation, and childcare, the gymnasium is used as a cafeteria as well as a place to host community events and fundraisers. The facility needed a polyurethane sports flooring solution that provides shock absorption, reduces maintenance needs, and could be applied over the existing tile surface.

The Process

After stripping wax off the old tile in the gymnasium, the crew from Action Floors began the process of installing Action Synchro, which gave the floor the performance attributes it had been missing, most importantly, shock absorption.

While our high-quality hardwood maple basketball courts provide area elastic deflection over a wide surface area, pad and pour systems are different.

“With synthetic sports floor systems, you have point elastic floors,” Fenhaus explains. “That means shock absorption occurs at the point where the foot impacts the floor. Compared to the old tile, it makes for a much safer surface for young kids to play on.”

Pad and pour sports floors, such as Action Synchro, consist of a rubber pad with a polyurethane topcoat and color coat poured over that. The topcoat is seamless and non-porous while the rubber layer can provide varying amounts of shock absorption depending on how much cushion is needed. Typically, the rubber base mat has a thickness between 4mm and 9mm.action floors synchro

“As with any pad and pour floor, the thicker the base mat, the more shock absorption is delivered,” Corullo says. “At St. Sebastian, we installed a 7mm base mat with a 2mm urethane topcoat. Even though Action Synchro was installed on top of existing flooring, the system allowed for easy transitions in the doorways. There were no large ramps or anything additional that needed to be installed. We were dealing with 3/8 of an inch at the most.”

Since it was one of the first times Action Floors had installed this product, we were curious to see how the process would turn out. Corullo was on-site participating in the application and was thoroughly impressed.

“It was a very smooth installation,” he says. “When it came to the 2mm wear layer on top, the materials mixed quite well. It was very uniform during the application process, and it spread extremely smooth. Plus, the color coat layer was easy to roller-apply and filled the space nicely with a uniform look. There were essentially no challenges at all.”

Yet another aspect of the project that went smoothly was time management.

“We totally changed that space from an outdated tile floor to a facility with a high-quality, cushioned, multi-use gym floor in just about one week,” Corullo says. “There was hardly any downtime at the school.”

The Results

Michelle Fink says the new synthetic sports floor made a big difference for St. Sebastian. Concerns have been eased and the gym will be a valuable community resource. Plus, everything looks a lot better, too.

“Area students now have a gym floor with the proper sports lines and will enjoy having it to use during the basketball season,” Fink says. “At the same time, it resolved our maintenance issues and gave our gym a fresh new look for community use.”

Corullo explains that because the new floor system is seamless, it eliminates all the cracks that made the tile difficult to keep clean.

Action Synchro comes in several standard colors as well as the option to get custom colors. So, St. Sebastian was able to choose the right look, including basketball and volleyball game lines. As a bonus, Action Floors provided a special feature at center court to give the gym a touch of class, personality, and school history.

“We incorporated the school’s original logo from decades ago that had kind of been forgotten about,” Corullo says. “We were able to put it back in the middle of the floor, which they really liked.”

While Action Synchro is a practical synthetic sports floor system for smaller schools with younger students and athletes, it’s a product that could have benefits in other settings, too.

“In addition to being an option for elementary and middle school gyms, Action Synchro is ideal for an application like elevated running and walking tracks in college fitness facilities,” says Corullo.

An advantage to testing out Action Synchro in our own community is that we can show it to our customers when they visit Action Floors headquarters in Mercer, Wisconsin. However, if you’re interested in this polyurethane sports floor system and can’t make the trip to the Northwoods anytime soon, we can still provide you with all the details.

Contact Action Floors with your questions or call us at 1-800-746-3512 today to learn more about specifications and test results. Find out if Action Synchro is right for your next project.

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