Can you play football on Artificial grass?

To make a long story short, yes! Football can be played on artificial grass, as many 5 a side players are testament to every week. People of all ages play the beautiful game on artificial grass effectively. The hallowed green carpet is perfect for the fast-paced sport throughout the year.

In 1964 it was first installed at a school in Providence, Rhode Island. And it was some 16 years later when it entered the football world, at a very rudimentary stage. Fans didn’t fully take to it straight away, and a few people still wrongly believe it hasn’t progressed. Even though it’s been over 50 years!

The fact is the artificial grass we use now is substantially different. It evolved quickly in the 1980s, and with the use of polypropylene and polyethylene it succeeded as a product. Polypropylene brought the stability up to a high standard and polyethylene reduced the chance of injury. The overall quality has in fact improved so much that the 2008 Euros featured games played on this synthetic surface. England lost 2-1 to Russia on the first game played on artificial turf, but it’s safe to say the pitch didn’t play a part!

Synthetic Grass myths

Urban myths and whispers can be generated when a new product is invented and sometimes mistakenly continue. Here are a few:

  • Toxicity - there was a myth travelling around that artificial grass contained traces of lead causing it to be toxic. This is completely untrue. There are strict quality standards it must adhere to, ensuring it’s safe for everyone. 
  • It’s not safe for pets - dogs not only love the feel of the synthetic turf, it prevents the need to give them a bath to clean the heaps of mud caused by natural grass. Feel free to have a kickabout with Rover/Fido anytime! 
  • It’s good for sports, but that’s it - artificial grass is now used for residential properties all over the world. Although there is no arguing from us that football is one of its best purposes.

The difference between Astroturf and Artificial Grass

Are they the same? Are they of a similar quality? The answer is technically yes. But maybe not for the reasons that initially spring to mind. So let's clear it up.

Artificial grass is the all-encompassing term used to describe synthetic grass imitating the real thing. And they do say imitation is the highest form of flattery, so hats off to grass!

Astroturf on the other hand is a US based company that used to hold the majority of the artificial grass market. They cater especially for sports pitches hence why the company name is mentioned so much among football enthusiasts. When describing synthetic pitches, if you use the term ‘artificial grass’ you can never be wrong, but with ‘astroturf’ there is a chance you are.

It is similar to a common misconception people have about the phrase ‘tannoy system’. Many believe that a tannoy system is the type of product that announces important messages to the public. For example in a train station, when trains are announced on arrival. Tannoy is actually the name of a company that manufactures these loudspeaker systems and not the actual systems themselves. In this case ‘Astroturf’ is on a similar wavelength to ‘Tannoy’, both describing brands rather than product types.

How to make a football pitch in your garden

Up and down the UK, children thoroughly enjoy playing football in gardens, and parents love watching and (sometimes) joining in. But let’s face it, using rusty buckets for goalposts or a washing line as the halfway point isn’t always ideal. Which is why some homeowners decide to recreate the real thing, creating an authentic experience to be fully enjoyed.

And if you’re thinking of doing the same, the first question always seems to pop up. Where do you start?

Here’s a brief overview of what to consider:

  • Space - how much room do you have and how much artificial grass do you need?
  • Nets - You have the option of plastic goals, or the sturdier more expensive metal kind.
  • Lighting - During summer it gets light quite late, but what about in winter? Consider some form of lighting (obviously this doesn’t have to be the industry standard champions league floodlights). Quality fake grass needs to be seen!
  • Markings - Don’t let any culprits get away with offside at your garden venue, aerosol is the route most go down here.

Once this has all been sorted, buy a football of decent quality, make sure the pitch markings are all correct and away you go!

Real Grass vs Artificial Grass

Life would be better if everything operated on a level playing field, so why not implement your football pitch in the same way. That is one of the advantages of artificial grass, but how does it compare to its natural counterpart? Here are a few of the vital differences.

Maintenance

You’ve got to mow real grass sporadically (more over the summer months) to keep it from getting too lengthy and out of control. It has to be fertilised and watered to keep it looking alive, as well as raked to prevent leaves covering it in the autumn. The maintenance for artificial grass is fairly minimal as it just needs brushing from time to time. To summarise, real grass takes a lot more work than artificial.

Longevity

Real Grass can last 2 minutes in some situations and even though tropical conditions are rare in the UK, a sustained period of extreme weather can cause damage. Artificial grass has a potential lifespan of 20-25 years, whatever the weather.

Environment

Synthetic grass does have a bigger environmental effect compared to its natural counterpart. Although growing grass does have some environmental impact it is fully organic and can be used as compost.

Pets and Children

As mentioned earlier, artificial grass is pet friendly. Whereas urine will severely damage a live lawn and you’ll notice it aesthetically pretty quickly. Synthetic is absolutely perfect for children and pets to run around on (which they can do with their seemingly boundless energy). If you’re playing football, just make sure not to let them win!

Characteristics of Our Artificial Grass

UV Resistant

All of our Artificial Grass floorings are classed as UV Resistant. This means that they are highly effective at resisting UV light. Ultraviolet light or Sunlight can be detrimental to certain materials and potentially ruin them. They can become faded or discoloured after a level of exposure, unlike our range. And football is best played in the summer, so this is vital!

Polyethylene and Polypropylene

Our selection is either made from a blend of polyethylene and polypropylene or 100% Polyethylene Monofilament Yarn. Polyethylene being the most sought after plastic, because of its simple design and many uses. Polypropylene is a thermoplastic known for its toughness and is used in many applications just like it’s counterpart.

Cost Effective

Sometimes, there is a false impression that fake grass will cost the earth so it’s better to stay au naturale. With our selection ranging from £14.39 per square metre to £22.79 per square metre you can revolutionise your garden in an affordable way. And we don’t compromise on quality, that’s for sure, so create your mini wembley today!