No Fault Safety Surface Is Not Just For Playgrounds!

Here at No Fault Sport Group, we are always talking about playground safety. After all, the complete No Fault Safety Surface System is designed to provide a resilient, porous and seamless playground safety surface. We believe that it’s the best rubber surface available for fall protection and ADA accessibility.

However … Let’s not forget that No Fault Safety Surface is a multi-purpose application. That means it’s not just for playgrounds! Indeed, its versatility makes it a great choice for playgrounds, splash pads, walking tracks, and perhaps a few things that you haven’t even considered.

If you need a durable, attractive surfacing material for indoors or outdoors, No Fault Safety Surface just might be the solution you’ve been looking for.

What’s It Made Of?

No Fault Safety Surface is a unique combination of synthetic EPDM rubber (ethylene propylene diene monomer) and TPV rubber granules (thermoplastic vulcanizate). A cushion layer of shredded recycled rubber goes on the outside. This “wear layer” is available in a wide variety of colors—you even have the option to create fun theme-shaped designs.

The EPDM and TPV components are held together with a polyurethane binder. No Fault Safety Surface is poured on-site by our professional technicians, giving you a seamless surface for endless applications. We install almost anywhere in the country, and our product is backed by a full warranty.

Okay … So Why Is No Fault Safety Surfacing Good For Playgrounds?

Our poured-in-place rubber playground surface provides critical fall height protection for children on playgrounds. This means the shock-absorbing properties of No Fault Safety Surface can help disperse the momentum of a falling body or head, thus reducing the risk of life-threatening injuries.

As the originator of the poured-in-place playground surface, No Fault’s clients include McDonald’s, Walt Disney World, and Universal Studios and many park and recreation departments across the country. Our innovative surfacings have helped to create safe playground environments around the globe.

Sounds Good, But Didn’t You Say It’s Not Just For Playgrounds?

To get some ideas on the wide range of applications for which our products have been used look at some of our recent non-playground projects. For example, The San Bernardino Juvenile Detention Center in San Bernardino, California used our colorful poured-in-place rubber surface to repurpose their outdoor basketball and tennis courts.

Speaking of basketball courts, here’s another one where our “PIP” rubber surfacing is making the game easier on players’ knees and reducing the risk of injuries from falls:

Are you thinking of building an all-inclusive, adaptive baseball/softball field fully accessible to special needs individuals, disabled veterans and able-bodied players? No Fault can help! Here are some pictures of accessible baseball fields that No Fault provided and installed our rubber surfacing for:

Take a look at our No Fault Safety Surface that we custom installed for decorative “knee walls” for a pool area in New Haven, Indiana. (A “knee wall” is a short wall, typically less than three feet in height, used to support structures.) Our customer loves it!

No Fault Safety Surface also makes excellent residential pool decking, as you can see at this installation we did at a private residence in Louisville, Kentucky:

No Fault partnered with Heartland Park & Recreation to provide and install all-black rubber surfacing for the Centerville Walking Track in Centerville, Texas. The results are outstanding!

And what do you think the folks at the Entergy Riverbend Firing Range in St. Francisville, Louisiana selected for their flooring material? You guessed it! No Fault Safety Surface!

As you can see, there are virtually endless applications for indoor and outdoor safety surfacing. It’s soft under your feet while remaining durable and weatherproof.  Contact No Fault Sport Group today so we can assist you with your upcoming flooring projects. 

No Fault Project Spotlight: Elm St. Park Project, Greenville, North Carolina

No Fault was delighted to partner with Site Concepts to provide and install our No Fault Safety Surface for Elm St. Park in Greenville, North Carolina.  Elm St. Park opened on May 23,1951 as the City of Greenville’s Little League baseball field.  Then in 2007, David Vaughn, father of Sarah Vaughn, organized funding and managed the construction of the Sarah Vaughn Field of Dreams project.  Sarah was a child with special needs, and this project was built in her honor.

This project included handicap accessible baseball fields and a new, all-inclusive playground called “CommonGround”.  

The original playground was completed in the Spring of 2008.  Parents and supporters all had input in the design.  Lisa Jordan, a local artist and a parent of a special needs child, painted the sidewalks that shared the design elements in the playground and the surfacing.  The play area includes leaves, bugs, sand and other nature elements, and the rubber safety surfacing was a nature spin of colors and swirl patterns.  

No Fault was recently invited to replace the old rubber surfacing with our No Fault Safety Surface.   Our partnership with Site Concepts produced a fun and colorful play area with an eye-catching “swirl” pattern – just like the original surfacing design back in 2008.  Since both Site Concepts and No Fault Sport Group are awarded vendors of Sourcewell (formerly NJPA), we were able to provide the City of Greenville with discounted pricing.

Mike Watson, Parks Coordinator for the Greenville Recreation& Parks Department, stated, “I am very pleased with the outcome.  The pattern and colors match the old one perfectly.  The work was done in a timely manner, and I would have no issues working with No Fault for any future projects.

If you are building an accessible baseball field or all-inclusive playground, give No Fault a call at 1-866-NFSPORT.  Our sales team can assist you in designing a play space including our No Fault Safety Surface which is not only resilient and safe, but can also include special themes and patterns to meet your needs.

Playground Tips for Children with Special Needs

Playgrounds are meant for ALL children. Parents and school administrators need occasional reminders that this means including children with special needs too.

“Special needs” can range from physical challenges to emotional, behavioral, or learning difficulties. This commonly includes things like:

  • Autism
  • ADHD
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Down syndrome
  • Emotional issues
  • Epilepsy
  • Reading and learning disabilities
  • Intellectual disabilities

These kids may need additional supervision and accommodations. Still, the benefits of play are just as important for them as they are for any other child.

Many of these benefits come from inclusive play with typically-developing children. Kids get the most out of play when they’re playing with other children with different abilities and skills. This means that special-needs children shouldn’t have their own separate playtime.   

The federal government considers inclusive classrooms to be the gold standard for early childhood education. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and U.S. Department of Education wrote a joint policy statement in 2015 which states:

“Children with disabilities and their families continue to face significant barriers to accessing inclusive high-quality early childhood programs, and too many preschool children with disabilities are only offered the option of receiving special education services in settings separate from their peers without disabilities.”

“Children don’t think of themselves or their peers as disabled unless we tell them that,” says Shirley Swope, parent advisor at the PEAK Parent Center, a resource center with services for families of children with special needs. “Separating or segregating children tells them they’re different from each other, and that message sticks making it harder and harder for them to integrate as they get older.”

Fostering an all-around, supporting environment means making sure similarities are reinforced. Including typically-developing children and special-needs kids in the same play groups gives them the opportunity to understand and practice inclusion, acceptance, and empathy.

Kids are naturally curious. Typically-developing children will have questions about how mental and physical disabilities work. Help them understand that everyone is different, and that special needs children deserve respect and acceptance.

Non-disabled children are often taught to ignore their peers with special needs. Or worse, they’re taught to treat them differently. So, instead of talking about how children with special needs are different, talk about the ways all children are similar.

A common myth about inclusion is that attention given to children with special needs will take away from typically-developing children. In fact, research indicates that typically-developing children make similar developmental gains in regular and inclusive preschools (Source). Typical peers can share what they know, modeling behaviors for special-needs peers and boosting their own abilities through sharing and demonstration.

When you’re supervising kids of different abilities, keep a watchful eye for bullying or mean-spirited joking. Since children with disabilities are commonly considered “easy targets,” you have to take steps to protect them.

Teachers and parents might consider using “buddy systems” on playgrounds. This is when a typically-developing child is matched to a classmate with special needs during play. The buddy system encourages cooperative play between children in inclusive settings. Select same-gender and same-age peers who enjoy similar activities. Typically developing children may require some training about the best ways to engage their “buddy” in play and how to interpret their behavior and communication style.

Aside from taking steps to integrate special-needs children into the overall group, you’ll need to make accommodations with your playground equipment as well. Common accommodations for special-needs kids might include putting a fence around a playground area, making sure pathways are paved for wheelchairs, and ensuring that equipment contains ramps and guard rails.

Whenever room permits, go above and beyond Americans With Disabilities Act guidelines and make pathways wider than 60 inches. This enables group access for all visitors while accommodating wheeled devices like wheelchairs and strollers.

How do you encourage inclusive play? We’d love to hear your ideas! No Fault Sport Group can provide innovative, slip-resistant rubber safety surfacing that makes it easy for all children to play together. We work with manufacturers to build playgrounds that emphasize safety, inclusion, and value. Please give us a call toll-free at 1-866-NFSPORT and let us know you read this blog!