The 'floor' in basketball is another word for the basketball court. In this article, you'll learn all about typical basketball playing surfaces and how they are suited for the sport. Let's get started.
Official basketball courts are made out of wood. Different types of wood have different properties, with maple generally being the preferred choice for basketball flooring. Listed below are the characteristics of maple wood that make it suitable for the sport of basketball.
Maple is incredibly durable. Along with being resistant to splintering and scratches, maple also has tightly packed grains that prevent dirt and dust from accumulating in between the floorboards. This is especially important considering that the floor is exposed to constant pounding each game. Whereas most types of wood would require replacement in a short period of time, maple courts have a lifespan of approximately 10 years before they've accumulated too much wear and tear.
While basketball courts are hardly soft, it is important for the surface to have a little bit of give so that the ball bounces off the floor at a reasonable height. Maple tends to do the trick, absorbing the impact of the ball being bounced just enough to allow for dribbling.
Maple wood acts as a canvas, allowing for the text and logos you see on TV to be permanently painted onto the court and its surrounding areas. In addition, maple floorboards respond well to a glossy, oil finish that is used on most courts, giving them the brightness and shine that players and fans alike have become accustomed to.
While indoor basketball courts are generally limited to wood flooring, outdoor courts are made of many different types of material to help withstand harsh weather. These include asphalt, rubber, and concrete.