If you plan to install an outdoor running track for your gym or school, you may be comparing surfaces. While soft surfaces such as grass or dirt are an option, a hard surface could be more practical. That leaves you with a choice between asphalt and concrete. Asphalt is often preferred since it's a little softer and more flexible than concrete. Here's why asphalt is a good choice for an outdoor running track.
A Solid Surface Is Easier To Run On
Each running surface affects your body in different ways and works out different muscles. Since soft surfaces are inconsistent and may shift under your feet, you have to work on keeping your balance and working up your speed.
A hard surface is usually consistent, and that makes it easy to keep a steady, fast pace. You can work on building top speeds on an asphalt track. Still, asphalt has enough flexibility that it is a little easier on your joints than concrete.
Asphalt Is Easy To Mark
The steps for making an asphalt track are like any other type of asphalt paving. The asphalt paving contractor has to make the base; however, the base doesn't have to be as strong and the asphalt doesn't have to be as thick as a surface that's meant for cars or trucks. The base has to allow the track to drain properly so you won't have a problem with standing water.
Hot asphalt is poured over the base and then line markings are applied as the last step. You can use line paint to separate running lanes and mark distances, and since the paint is white, it is easy to see on black asphalt.
Asphalt Is Easy To Maintain
Soft surfaces, such as dirt, sand, and grass need frequent maintenance so they're as flat and stable as possible. Holes can form easily in dirt and sand. Asphalt is much tougher, especially since the track won't have regular vehicle traffic. However, asphalt can break down due to sun exposure, especially if you don't put a sealcoat on.
If your track develops holes or cracks, an asphalt paving contractor can repair them right away and make sure the surface is level so there is no trip hazard. By keeping up with minor repairs, an asphalt running track should last for many years.
A Solid Surface Can Be Used For Other Things
An outdoor solid surface comes in handy since it can be used for other forms of exercise and outdoor activities. Plus, you can put turf in the middle of the track so runners can switch between soft and hard surface running.
Talk to an asphalt paving contractor near you about putting in an asphalt track and get advice on how to maintain it. You may find after comparing all of your choices, that asphalt is the right one for your facility's needs.