Are Sport Courts The New Suburban Swimming Pool?

I guess I’ll call this a “microtrend”, but I’ve now seen 2 neighbors (and a 3rd coming) put in sport courts in their backyards.  There are lots of companies that do this, but it’s essentially a flat surface with a basketball hoop and some lights.

This seems much more practical than a pool which is often a fad and kids stop using it after a few years.  (And requires ongoing maintenance and liability.)

If you expand the sport court concept from basketball to include any sport, you can have a putting green, a basketball court, a hockey surface (non-ice), volleyball, tennis, and several others. 

I guess the question is why do this?  I can think of several reasons:

  • Convenience (not having to go to a park)
  • Safety (having kids right outside)
  • Driveways aren’t flat anymore
  • Developments are moving farther and farther out meaning more land per yard (and more need for destination homes where kids gather)

Is this a fad like tennis courts were in some neighborhoods in the 60’s?  That’s still to be seen, but I have a friend who has had a company doing this for about 5 years.

I certainly have seen more parks going to alternative surfaces that are safer for kids that fall.

8 Responses to “Are Sport Courts The New Suburban Swimming Pool?”

  1. John, you seem to be taking things very personally. Relax: it’s a backyard court, not a religion (not that you should be that concerned either way).

    I bought a court from DunkStar and have been really happy with it, as I’m sure you’re happy with your court.

  2. @ Bill Schweitzer I agree, such courts are much safer than asphalt or concrete, but they’re also easier on your body. I’ve stood on a SnapSports basketball court, and it felt great.

  3. You guys are nuts. No one has courts as technically sophisticated as SnapSports. Sorry. They’re the best.

  4. Pools are great for those living in sunny California, but for those of us in northern climates where swimming season only last about 5 months max (if we’re lucky), an outdoor game court is much more practical since it can also be flooded over in the winter to make a hockey rink. A game court is year-round use for us whereas a pool is not in colder climates. As for maintenance, there is none, and no special knowledge is required. Once the game court is in, there are no chemicals or parts to buy virtually ever again. A friend recently had to buy a new tennis net for her game court after 11 years because when she had it in storage last winter some mice got in the box and chewed it. Up until that point she spent not a single penny on maintenance or parts replacement.

  5. Sport courts may produce a nice putting green for dad, but in the interest of your children, and your property value, a pool is the obvious choice. Then again who says you have to choose one or the other? Why not both? All I am saying is, if I had to choose between a swimming pool and a sport court in Van Nuys ca, where temperatures exceed 105degrees, the answer is fairly easy…a Pool. Service can be done by the owner with the right amount of knowledge. There go your maintenance costs!

  6. The security and maintenance of a swimming pools are a matter of concern. However nothing can provide the beauty and enjoyement a swimming pool can provide.

  7. Okay Bill. Not sure why you think Sport Court is an inferior product when they’ve been around since 1974. And most every other athletic floor tile is literally a copy-cat or knock-off on Sport Court products. Heck, there’s even a company out there that are ex-Sport Court employees and they think they can make a go of it… and they are well known and make all sorts of claims about their products, experience, etc, etc.

    Bill, Sport Court has a tile surface that you may not be aware about. It’s called SPORT DECK. This tile has a surface that not only helps reduce “falling”… you can literally play on it in the rain (I have!!). The only real advantage any of these other companies have is PRICE. The other tile companies will drop their shorts at the mere mention of competing with the real-deal just to make a sale. Oh, by the way, I was able to go and play on both indoor and outdoor Sport Courts in my area before I bought. The nearest installation for the other competitors was so far away that it was literally in another time zone.

    Good luck getting any after sale customer service, Bill. My sales rep and installer live within a 5 mile radius of my house and we all have Sport Courts. Do the people who installed your court even have one themselves?? Does the OWNER of the company have one of his own products in his backyard??

  8. The true test of a game court is helping to ensure that you don’t fall, instead of making it safer to fall on. I don’t want to fall when playing basketball, and sport court doesn’t give you that safety benefit. I narrowed it down to rhino and flex, as they were better at preventing slips and falls, and ended up choosing flex.

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