Skip to content

Preventing Gym Floor Damage: Best Practices for Montgomery County PA Schools

Are you a Montgomery County school with wooden gym floors?

Chances are that your gym floors are an active place that your students, faculty, and guests utilize daily.

Your gymnasium is an important place of learning and entertainment, and you need to protect the beautiful floors, while maintaining a safe environment.

Let’s take a look at the kinds of damage that can occur to your floors, and some simple ways you can protect your beautiful gym floors while enjoying their beauty for years to come.

Types of damage to gym floors

There are many benefits of a hardwood floor in a gym. However, they do need simple maintenance to stay beautiful. Also, steps should be taken to avoid damage that can occur.

Gym floors are made from commercial wood flooring that is designed for typical athletic activities, not for things like:

  • Bleachers
  • Heavy weights
  • Chairs

Damage can occur in the form of:

  • Scratches
  • Gashes
  • Cracks
  • Buckling from moisture

Equipment movement

Movement of heavy items can cause damage to your beautiful wood gym floors.

Dropped weights and training equipment can cause cracks and scratches. Dragged chairs can cause scratches and chips. Bleachers opening and closing can also cause damage. Lighting equipment set-up and more can cause further scratches, wear and tear.

Foot traffic – high heels

In addition to this, foot traffic can cause significant damage. High heels worn at events and dances (for example) can cause damage to the top surface of your flooring. General daily dirt and dust can be traced in by shoes to your gym floors. Cleaning is required to maintain its luster and shine.


Gym floor moisture damage can also be an issue. Common spills at sporting events and weather conditions that cause humidity can lead to cracks or gym floor water damage. These kinds of things are unavoidable for the most part, and if left unattended, they can cause wood buckling damage and more.

Establishing footwear guidelines

Gym floors are not designed for common street shoes. They can trail in abrasive grit that can cause scratches. This damage from improper shoes can leave black scuff marks, scratches, and more, on your wooden gym floors.

This is why it is a good idea to set specific and clear rules on the types of shoes that you will allow on your gym flooring. Non-marking athletic shoes are your best bet for daily activities.

No-street-shoe policy

Setting a no-street-shoe policy is a common choice for gymnasiums at schools.

Use clear, well-placed signs for your students, staff, and visitors as a reminder to only wear proper gym shoes on your wooden gym floors. Make sure that your staff enforces your policies verbally as well to prevent any unnecessary damages.

Implementing protective measures

There are several steps you can take to help prevent unnecessary damage to your hard wood floors.

  1. Use protective gym floor covers at non-gym related events
  2. Use gym mats to protect floors during some gym activities
  3. Use padding under equipment as a shield
  4. Use entrance mats to catch dirt, debris, and weather related moisture

These simple protective measures are affordable and they can go a long way in protecting and prolonging the life of your beautiful gym flooring.

The importance of proper equipment handling techniques to prevent accidental floor damage

Avoid damage to your wood gym flooring from improper equipment handling by teaching and stressing:

  • Mindful equipment handling

When you train your staff and students in proper equipment handling techniques you can help to prevent accidental floor damage. The use of simple mats under equipment can go a long way in preventing damage.

Create your plan

Set up specific steps for your users to know what they personally can do to prevent damage to the gym floor (or themselves).

Setting up mats below heavy equipment should be the first step towards safety.

Train your athletes, coaches, and staff on proper equipment placement. Have one set location that you allow equipment to be placed, and explain clearly how you want that equipment to be moved.

The movement of heavy equipment can cause massive scratches if not done properly. Clearly discuss your plan of movement.

Regular cleaning and maintenance tips

Always protect the wooden gym floor with regular cleaning, maintenance, and hardwood gym floor care. It’s actually quite simple.

Use Mats

Trap some of the dirt and weather before it even enters your gym floor surface. Use walk-off mats at the entrances of your gym to catch some of the dirt and dust. Vacuum these walk-off mats regularly.

Daily Cleaning

To prevent hardwood floor deterioration, perform a proper daily cleaning. Dust and dirt particles are brought into your gym daily, and they can scratch the surface. To prevent this damage, do a daily dry mopping.

Hardwood gym floor cleaner

Greasy or sticky caked-on substances cannot be removed from commercial grade wood flooring with just a sweeping.

To remove this grime, use hardwood gym floor cleaning products that are safe. A lightly saturated microfiber cloth with a proper pH-neutral floor cleaner is best. Lightly clean the surface while avoiding too much moisture on the flooring.

For this reason, do not use a mop and bucket on high end wood flooring in your gym – it’ll create a moisture issue which can cause water damage.


Your artisan hardwood floors in your gym should receive regular hardwood gym floor refinishing and re-coating to protect it and to keep it looking beautiful. Wood flooring contractors can help you with this.

Hudson Hardwood, a top-rated wood flooring company in Philadelphia, specializes in this technique and all wood floor services. Once a year re-coating of commercial hardwood flooring is recommended to extend your gym floor’s natural lifespan.

Routine inspections

The significance of routine cleaning and inspections of your gym’s solid wood floors can not be understated. This will help to detect minor damages early on and prevent further deterioration. Do your own visual inspection daily.

Leave it to a wood floor specialist

It is very important to involve professional wood floor contractors in conducting thorough inspections periodically of your gym flooring.

Hudson Hardwood can help you prevent future damage from occurring in the first place, as well as address existing issues.

Hudson Hardwood in the Philadelphia area specializes in commercial hardwood floors, gym floor re-coating and hardwood gym floor installation. Re-coating your gym floors regularly will keep them safe and beautiful for years to come.

Reach out today for all of your gym floor needs. We can’t wait to see your school gym floor shine!



Get a Free Quote