The contribution of the school environment to a child’s development with daily physical activity through sport and physical education (PE) cannot be ignored. Sport participation in schools can provide many benefits in terms of physical fitness, health benefits, cognitive development, personal wellbeing, and social integration. The role that sport now plays in the ‘Academies’ environment is proving to be a fundamental building block in the overall pupil’s experience.
Academies control their own admissions process and like to lead at the forefront of innovation especially when it comes to sport and physical activity. The government have argued that academies are working towards driving up standards by putting more power in the hands of head teachers over pay, length of the school day and term times. They have much more freedom and can opt out of the national curriculum. It’s a been a big leap, but one that seems to be reaping rewards.
It’s been years in the making, but Atlantic Academy’s brand-new building at Bucks Cross in North Devon finally opened its doors in September 2018. As part of the overall curriculum Atlantic Academy aim for all students to excel, both in lessons and through extra-curricular activities which includes a huge focus on sport and fitness. The new school now abounds with a host of new features and classrooms, together with a fully equipped performance space and sports hall. In specifying the new facilities, the team at the main construction firm Willmott Dixon recommended sports flooring that would not only be of the highest quality, but would also be suitable for multiple uses, would be fit for purpose and deliver a future proof solution which is so vital in the education sector. It would be a challenge well-met by international flooring specialist Gerflor supplying 621m2 of their world-renowned Taraflex® Comfort sports flooring in Blue for the sports hall and 582m2 Multi-Use sports flooring in Wood Grey for the performance space. Specifying Gerflor’s Taraflex® was the ideal choice in terms of delivering a speedy installation, together with providing high-end sports performance that the successful school basketball team required as well as the required safety and comfort for players.
Lynsey Slater, Academy Principal said at the time of the school opening, “we wanted the very best for our students and Gerflor delivered that”. The End User is absolutely delighted with the final results and continues to receive positive feedback from the pupil’s and other users at the facility.
The Construction Manager Michael Mackey from Willmott Dixon commented, “this was a Scape 3 Project which we tendered for back in 2012. The tog value of the cushioned vinyl sports flooring needed to be a certain rating in order to achieve the output performance specification for the underfloor heating”. Michael went on to further add, “the Gerflor chosen sports floorings are performing really well and delivering exactly the results we wanted”.
The Taraflex® ranges have been used by the largest international sports federations (volleyball, handball, badminton, table tennis) for decades. Through partnerships with these federations Gerflor has been present at the Summer Olympic Games since 1976. It’s an Olympic pedigree stretching back over an incredible 43 years.
Taraflex® sports floorings are not only associated with international sporting events but continue to be a popular choice in a vast array of education markets and applications. Gerflor understands how important it is to future proof school, college and other learning building interiors, therefore their solutions offer optimum safety, comfort, performance and are competitively priced to meet the needs of most education budgets.
Taraflex® Comfort is a P3 category sports flooring, ideal for a variety of sport and leisure activities. Offering the highest level of shock absorption, minimising the force of impact on the body and reducing long term injury risk. Taraflex® Comfort is available in 17 colours and three wood-effect designs as standard.
Taraflex Multi-use is a P1 category sports flooring designed with both sport and non-sport use in mind, making it ideal for multi-purpose areas including school halls. It protects players with excellent shock absorption and impact protection. Yet it’s tough enough to protect itself against non-sport demands often found in schools such as tables and chairs. Taraflex Multi-use being available in 5 wood-effect and 2 concrete-effect designs.
Both products are available in an extra 110 solid colour options with a 500sqm minimum order quantity. The products are also treated with Protecsol®, which renders polish redundant and is triple action meaning no polish is ever required, it contributes to easy maintenance and is anti-friction burn and slide/grip.
Michael Mackey ended by saying, “we would certainly specify Gerflor flooring again for other projects, Gerflor are always on hand to assist with specifications, provide technical advice and quotes for both new build and refurbishments projects”.
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