Not sure if it’s worth the investment for an air structure? If you’re mulling it over, or even just wondering why it would be a good idea, here are 5 reasons to install a bubble over your sports field.
1. Cost Effective
For price per square foot of usable space, air domes are one of the best bangs for your buck. Fewer materials and a simplified building process means that you spend a fraction of the cost of a similar size brick and mortar sports facility.
If all you need is a big indoor space to play indoor sports, you’ll be hard pressed to find a more cost-effective solution. For a quick overview of dome pricing, check out our white paper on the topic.
2. Temporary or Permanent
Once the grade beam is in place, installing or taking down an air dome can be done on an as needed basis. Many fields convert to indoor facilities for the winter, and switch back to outdoor fields for the summer.
It’s the best of both worlds.
3. Fully Customizable
Because we need to build each dome to fit the space and requirements of different locations and sports, every dome package is fully customizable. Whether it’s a dome for tennis, or it needs to cover an entire football field, The Farley Group can build it to your needs.
The dome itself can even be customized with logos, colors, signs, or advertisements. Whatever you want to see on the side of the dome, we’ve got you covered!
4. Infinite Uses
Unlike other types of construction, domes can create massive clear span spaces that aren’t obstructed by things like supporting walls or poles. This means you end up with wide open room to do anything that you could think of.
A dome covered soccer field could be used for any number of field sports like field hockey, football, lacrosse, or even dodgeball.
And you might even have some outside-the-box uses such as paintballing or a party space you can fill with games and bouncy castles. Pretty much anything you can do outside can easily translate into a dome!
5. Domes are Cool
Last but not least, one of the best reasons to build an air dome is for the wow-factor. Seeing an air dome inflate for the first time is an impressive thing and is sure to amaze even the most difficult to impress people.
Stepping inside of a dome for the first time is an experience in and of itself. With large domes, it often seems counterintuitive to see such a large indoor space.
So, if you’re unsure of whether a dome might be right for you and one of the above reasons spoke to you, feel free to drop us a line or keep researching our site. We’ve created one of the most informational air dome sites right here, so read on if you’d like to learn more.
Ultimate Frisbee is a team sport, non-contact, where you throw a flying disc known as a Frisbee to your teammates. You score points in the game by people catching the Frisbee in the opposing team’s end zone of the field. Sound simple so far?
As with any sport, beginners can feel a little overwhelmed or otherwise discouraged if they are not immediately great at playing the game. However, just like with any sport, you can improve your Ultimate Frisbee skills! Want to give this a shot? Here are six tips to get you started on improving your Ultimate Frisbee skills today:
Take More Time
In a standard game, you will have roughly ten seconds to throw the Frisbee to the next person. Many people, especially when someone is blocking or stalling them, try to throw it as quickly as possible. However, we actually think taking your time and using eight or nine seconds will help increase the number of successful throws. These extra seconds give you time to scan the field better and pick out a teammate better prepared to catch your throw.
Catch With Both Hands
Trying to catch the Frisbee with one hand increases your risk of dropping it and decreases the number of successful catches. So how can you improve your catching ability? Always try to catch the Frisbee with both hands! It makes your grip stronger and provides more opportunity to catch. The only reason you should catch the Frisbee with one hand is if you need a few extra inches to stretch and you cannot get both hands out that far.
Don’t Give Up
Many people make the mistake of thinking they have missed out on the catch if they do not get the Frisbee before it flies overhead. However, you can catch it a lot more if you never give up on the catch unless the Frisbee is on the ground. So even if it flies above you, run a little backwards to try the catch again. You will miss more catches by giving up than you will by trying to run backwards and catch it.
More often than not, when people lose their cool during a game or even just practice, their performance tends to dip in quality. So especially while you are learning, it is important to remain calm even if you make a mistake, miss a catch, et cetera when playing Ultimate Frisbee. Do not let yourself destroy your confidence! Remaining calm will help you focus better, learn from what you did wrong, and fix it the next time.
Fake A Throw
Do you have to throw immediately? No. If someone is trying to block your throw, you have the perfect opportunity to make their game a little unsteady by faking a throw! All you need to do is do everything you would leading up to the Frisbee throw, including the exact hand motion, but just do not let go. You will, of course, have to move quickly once you fake the throw, so be sure to have an idea of where you actually want to throw the Frisbee ahead of time.
Practice Makes Perfect
Of course, the best piece of advice out there when it comes to improving your Ultimate Frisbee skills is this: practice makes perfect. The more you practice playing this game, the better you will be at it.
Are you worried about how you will maintain the practice when the months get colder and an outdoor field is no longer an option? This is where a dome comes in handy, since you can practice your Ultimate Frisbee skills all year long without worrying about the weather conditions outside. You can get in as much practice as you want!
Hockey’s position as Canada’s national sport is known worldwide, but it is certainly not the only sporting pastime we can take pride in. Lacrosse originated with the Plains Indians whose territory at the time was within what would become our national boundaries. The game would change in concept and rules considerably during the years that followed, eventually becoming the form of lacrosse we recognize today.
Earlier iterations of the game involved many native players and could sometimes last for entire days. It also tended to be quite violent, offering no protective equipment. European settlers adopted the basics, but scaled the size down considerably. The sport grew in popularity and the government declared it our national game in 1859.
Lacrosse continued to evolve and in 1867, the year of Canada’s confederation, the version we know now became more apparent. Games were shorter and the ball now rubber (rather than the wooden balls or small animal skulls used by the Indigenous participants).
For a few years, the play sometimes equaled the fierce physicality seen previously, particularly when Catholic and Protestant teams took to the field against each other. However, the level of violence shown caused some lacrosse leagues to fold and the game gradually became more concerned with presenting athletic competition, rather than bloody spectacle.
Lacrosse was an outdoor pastime up until the 1930s when an indoor variation, also known as box lacrosse, appeared. Like many sports, one could only enjoy field lacrosse for a few months a year in Canada, due to the length and severity of winter; box lacrosse solved that issue.
Each box lacrosse team can have 18 players, with no more than six playing at any time, one being the goaltender.
Players cannot step into the crease of the opposing goalie; if so and they score, the goal does not count. Each game consists of four 15-minute quarters. There are no ties, so the match goes into a series of five-minute overtime periods until someone scores the winning point.
Lacrosse is quite fast paced and the rules reflect that. A team must get a shot off at the other goal within 30 seconds, or they lose possession of the ball. They also must continually advance toward the opposing net; if more than eight seconds have passed and they have not gotten the ball past the mid-field point, they lose possession.
Box lacrosse also has some similarities to hockey. In addition to each team trying to score the most goals, fights occasionally break out. Penalties ensue for this and other rule violations, and the durations are much like those in hockey.
Box Lacrosse in a Dome
Box lacrosse matches often took place in conventional arenas, but air-supported domes also now offer a highly viable alternative. The space available means no rule changes are necessary and the climate-controlled environment guarantees that proper playing conditions are available all-year-round.
While field lacrosse games still happen frequently in this country, box lacrosse has superseded it in terms of popularity. Interesting in trying this fast and exciting sport? Contact your local dome to see when playing time is available or if there is a league in the area.
Air supported domes provide climate-controlled comfort all-year-round, allowing users to play any sport they like at any time. Of course, this means the playing surfaces have no access to rain or sunlight and, therefore, must be artificial.
However, this does not mean indoor grounds are maintenance-free. Artificial turf requires its own form of special care that also applies when it is used inside domes.
You have probably seen paths worn into parks and other areas where people and bicycles have crossed repeatedly over the same spot. Artificial turf can similarly wear if there is too much repetitive activity, such as training drills where the participant is running back and forth on the field. Proper planning and scheduling ensures these drills do not always take place in the same area of the dome.
2. Regular Inspections
A worn or uneven playing surface can negatively impact almost any kind of sport, so artificial turf requires regular inspections to maintain the integrity and safety of the playing field. Such close observation of the surface can also detect any potential problems before they reach a point where the users’ enjoyment suffers.
While there is no need to worry about leaves, sticks, or other debris, indoor turf still requires periodic cleaning and grooming to maintain a clean, flat surface free of obstructions. Mother Nature cleanses outdoor fields with rain; indoor surfaces need human attention to deal with things that should not be there. Good old-fashioned soap and water will remove things such as soda and coffee stains, alcohol, chocolate, ice cream, and paint. Cleaning solvents can usually handle any tougher stains that remain.
If chewing gum is ground into the surface, it is not just a matter of removing “grass” — those areas require special attention. Freon aerosol spray will help loosen the gum, which then becomes easy to remove without causing damage.
Unlike its outdoor counterpart, it is important to remove stray organic matter from indoor turf to prevent moss growth.
Artificial grass is shipped in large, heavy rolls that cause the turf to become flattened out. Grooming, in this case, does not involve mowing, but rather going over the surface with a power broom. This helps make the turf look robust and like natural grass. During the course of regular use, the turf can again become flat, requiring occasional extra passes with the broom.
There is also equipment available that adds rakes (for leveling the infill) and rotating tines (for aerating, which loosens the infill), providing the best all-around maintenance routine. The amount of times these operations occur each year varies according to manufacturer recommendation. Using a handheld spring-tine rake on the surface can also help level the infill material.
Grooming that takes place at the start of the season often occurs before the bubble goes up simply because it allows the groundskeepers a bit more room to do their job.
Cleaning is also important for health reasons. While certain microbes decompose without issue on real grass, the same does not occur on artificial turf. Commercial cleaners for this purpose are available, though a bleach mixture can also be just as effective. Apply either of these options using a pressurized spray.
MIDHURST – Love tennis? Never played indoors? Now’s your chance! In celebration of their new state-of-the-art facility, Barrie North Winter Tennis will open its doors to the general public, offering FREE indoor tennis on Oct. 14 and 15.
Simply call the Club at 705-737-2888 for details and to book your court. In lieu of court fees, visitors are welcome to make a voluntary donation in support of Hospice Simcoe.
Barrie North Winter Tennis is pleased to announce that this season’s tennis programs will operate under a brand new dome. The new vinyl-coated polyester membrane comes complete with reflective insulation and will feature 32 indirect hanging LED lights. Members and guests will be treated to the very best indoor tennis experience possible.
The dome is fabricated by The Farley Group, based out of Guelph, Ontario. The Farley Group is the most renowned air structure company in North America, having supplied domes for the Toronto FC Training Ground, the USTA National Tennis Center, and Bo Jackson’s Elite Sports Complex to name a few.
The Role of a General Contractor or Construction Manager in a Dome Project
Wondering why you’ll need a contractor for your dome project?
If you’re in the early stages of planning the construction of a dome, the process is no different from a traditional construction project. Even though domes go up faster and cost less than most structures, they still require careful planning, precise work, and proper permitting, like any real estate development project. For these tasks, an experienced contractor simply cannot be replaced.
When it comes to building a dome, The Farley Group works closely with your local general contractor or construction manager to get the job done as efficiently as possible. These professionals typically oversee all aspects of construction, and often take the lead on the planning and permitting phases as well.
Hiring a general contractor or construction manager, we know from experience, is the best way to accomplish the site work efficiently. Each project involves numerous steps and specialized work. It’s more than most of our customers can take on themselves, especially without prior construction experience. The task of coordinating the various sub-contractors is always best left to an experienced, professional general contractor.
Here are some of the responsibilities of a contractor in the dome construction process:
Approvals and Permitting
Contractors help get the project off the ground. They lend their experience working under your local by-laws and building codes to help you plan the project, sort out zoning issues, and obtain the necessary building permits. Once these issues are dealt with, the site preparation and construction can begin.
Contractors are also needed to coordinate other local professionals that you’ll need for your project, like architects and engineers. Each municipality has their own unique process, and having the right team of professionals will keep your schedule on track during the planning and permitting phase.
Towards the end of construction, these professionals, including your contractor, also coordinate with the local building authority for required inspections and final approvals for occupancy of your facility.
You need more than an empty space to build a dome. Before construction begins, your contractor will handle the excavation and balancing of the building site, along with any site remediation necessary to ensure the land is safe to build on.
Once all permits and approvals are in place, construction on site can begin. Your general contractor or construction manager will oversee all site work, including the concrete grade beam anchoring system for the dome, the sub-base for the interior surface, and the concrete pads for the dome’s entry/exit points and mechanical equipment.
Our domes use complex mechanical systems to maintain a comfortable climate and adequate air pressure inside the structure. Contractors work with skilled subcontractors to ensure safe and reliable electrical service and distribution (including wiring for the dome’s mechanical controls), gas service and plumbing, and the final connections to energize the dome’s mechanical and lighting systems.
Contractors also handle the peripheral infrastructure for sewer and storm water management, and the installation of the parking lot and parking lot lighting. And, of course, if your facility plans also include a clubhouse building, your contractor will oversee its construction as well.
Why Use a General Contractor and/or a Construction Manager?
There’s a lot more to building an air-supported dome than simply putting it in place and inflating it with air. When you look at all the steps involved, it’s clear why we partner with experienced professionals. Constructing a dome, especially with large fieldhouse facilities, is a real development project.
Throughout the process, The Farley Group is here to help along the way. We collaborate with everyone involved in the project to ensure all parties are on the same page to build exactly what you’re looking for.
Why Indoor Tennis Season is the Best Time to Get a New Racquet
As the outdoor tennis season winds to a close, it’s time to move your tennis training indoors. It might also be time to look at getting some new gear. If you need to get a new racquet, now might be the perfect time to do so.
Can’t tell if you need a new racquet, though? Some of the tell-tale signs that it’s time to get a new one are:Why Indoor Tennis Season is the Best Time to Get a New Racquet
Dents and Damage—If your racket bounces off the ground enough times, there might be enough damage to the structural integrity that it might be better to get a new one than wait until it fails during a game.
Falling apart—When pieces start to fall off, it’s likely time to get a new one
Doesn’t feel right—It doesn’t always have to be the racket’s fault. Perhaps your game has changed or you feel you’ve outgrown your racquet. A racquet should match your style and if the one you’re using isn’t up to the task, you should get a new one.
Also keep in mind that your old racquet might just need to be re-strung. A good quality racquet can be restrung a good number of times before you have to move on. A good rule of thumb for how often to restring your racquet is to take the number of times you play per week, and that’s the number of times you should restring in a year. Of course, if you play hard and for long periods of time, you might want to double or even triple that.
Depending on your level of play though, you might be changing racquets every year, and if so here are a few tips to help you choose a racquet.
Get the Right Grip Size
Tennis racquet grips range in size from 4” to 5 5/8”. You probably already have an idea if a thinner or wider grip size feels right for you, but be sure to try out a slightly smaller or larger grip size. You might find a new preference.
Choose the Right Length
The standard racquet is 27” long but if you’re looking to add more power to your swing, you may want to go to a longer racquet. Of course, if you already have a preference, stick to what you know. Some players know the feel of exactly how much power to put in to get the shot they want, changing your racquet could throw this off.
Look for Signs of a Quality Racquet
Racquets come in all different shapes, sizes and materials as no racquet is perfect for everyone. Because of this, it’s hard to just point at a racquet and say, “that’s the best one that you should buy.”
A few signs of a quality racquet that you should look out for are that the racquet is strung with high quality strings, the brand is something you can recognize, and the racquet feels balanced in the hand.
There are plenty of other signs of a poor-quality racquet, but those should be obvious when you pick it up.
What it comes down to at the end of the day is that you should pick a racquet that fits your playing style and works well for you. Keep this in mind when you’re choosing a new racquet for this season of indoor tennis training. If you like your new racquet, you’ll be all set for next summer’s outdoor season!
Rugby is another of those sports that’s wildly popular around the world, except for North America. That’s changing now, of course, as more teams and leagues pop up every year, but many still don’t know very much about the sport.
Besides knowing that air domes make perfect venues for indoor rugby games, we really didn’t know too much about the history of rugby either. So, we did a little digging…
First off, did you know that the sport of rugby is a direct offshoot from soccer (or football as it was known at the time)?
You may have noticed some similarities between the two sports, but you might not have realized how closely the two are actually related. There is some contention of how the two sports split, though.
According to SportsKnowHow.com, when the official rules for soccer were first decided upon back in 1863, a group of clubs and schools gathered to decide on which rules would stay and which would be abandoned.
One club, Blackheath—a notoriously rough club—wanted to include rules to allow running with the ball and hacking at the one carrying it. This wouldn’t fit into the game that the other clubs were trying to create, so Blackheath decided to strike off and create their own sport.
A sport that involved kicking, throwing, tackling, and was simply more rough and tumble than what would become “the beautiful game.” Rugby would go on to become something different, and a rift between the two sports would always remain.
Is this story true? We’re not sure! This is one of those historical stories that was passed down, but not properly recorded. Others have given a different story for the origins of the sport.
An older article from The Guardian tells a different tale. This source states that the sport started much earlier in 1823, according to a commemorative stone at an old rugby school.
The stone says that a student named William Webb Ellis was the first to begin playing rugby when he didn’t want to follow the standard rules of football. It says that “with a fine disregard for the rules of football...first took the ball in his arms and ran with it, thus originating the distinctive feature of the rugby game."
Now these two origin stories have enough time between them that they could both be true, it’s difficult to say for sure.
As with any sport that stretches back far enough, history gets muddy when trying to pinpoint a person or point in time when it first started.
Sports constantly evolve, and just like biological evolution, the changes are often so gradual that it’s pretty hard to define when one thing becomes another.
One thing we know for sure, though, is that the sport of rugby is just as popular as ever and continues to grow. And being able to move the sport indoors into an air supported structure will help bring the sport to even more North Americans who, due to the colder winters in the Northern parts, tend to spend more time with indoor sports.
If you’ve ever run laps, you’ve probably bemoaned the fact that soccer fields are so large. Luckily, we have air supported domes to create indoor spaces large enough to house a soccer field, but why do they need to be so big? Who decided that a soccer field should be the size of, well, a soccer field?
It might surprise you that soccer actually started out on a much larger scale. Somewhere around the 9th Century in England, the game would span an entire town as everyone would try and kick a pig’s bladder from one landmark to another.
But the modern field as we know it today began to take shape in the late 16th and early 17th centuries when soccer goals were first described.
In 1863, a group of English schools and clubs met up to decide on official rules for the game of soccer (or football as it was known). They published the original 14 laws of the game, one of which standardized the field of play.
In the original laws, the field (or grounds as it was then called) could be up to 100 yards wide and 200 yards long. After that, the modern shape of the soccer pitch took shape, with lines being added in for the boundaries, middle, and penalty box. The modern goal was standardized to 8 feet high and 8 yards long.
Did you know, though, that there isn’t one standard size for a soccer pitch? You’d think that since the first laws were set, someone at some point would have defined a single standard field size, but you’d be wrong.
The FIFA regulations for a soccer field states that there are acceptable ranges for the width and length of the field. The field should be rectangular in shape and be between 100 yards and 130 yards in length (90m to 120m) and 50 to 100 yards in width (45m to 90m). Fields for international matches are a little bit more restrictive and need to be 100 to 110 meters in length and 64 to 75 meters in width.
Interestingly, this means that most soccer fields are wider than standard American or Canadian football fields. An American football field has a standard width of 53 1/3 yards, and Canadian football fields are slightly wider at 65 yards.
So, while a football field does fit within the parameters of a soccer field, a pitch that’s created for soccer would most likely be larger than a football field.
Because two different soccer fields might have different dimensions, it creates an added challenge for dome building. One soccer dome might need to be slightly larger than another soccer dome, simply because the field itself is a little bit larger. It’s a good thing that each dome is custom designed and planned out to make sure that there’s enough room to cover your field, however big it is!
Detroit - The bright white air dome that will house the Detroit Fitness Foundation's multisport complex at I-75 and Mack Avenue in Detroit went up Wednesday. The complex, first announced in January, will be part of the city's planned improvements to Tolan Playfield there.