IAAF World Championship 2017

Sports Labs were proud to be chosen to test/certify the track at the London World Championship 2017. A little piece of the massive jigsaw that it is to put this global event on!

Craig Melrose assessing the shock absorption of the London Track prior to the World Championships

Craig Melrose assessing the shock absorption of the London Track prior to the World Championships

FIFA issue 2015 Test Method and Requirements Manual for the FIFA Quality Concept

FIFA the world governing body of football has issued a major update of its Quality Concept for Football Turf. Both the handbook of test methods and requirements have been revised. These are the test methods and requirements, which regulate the use of artificial turf in the game. The updated manuals contain new tests and new requirements all aimed at enhancing the performance and durability of artificial turf used for the elite – FIFA Quality Pro and community FIFA Quality aspects of the game.

A new accelerated wear machine called the Lisport XL, which is used to condition the samples under tests by aging them by wear is significantly, ball roll is now done on these samples.

This is a game changer for preferred producers and licencees who manufacture these type of products, in effect meaning that all the previous registered ‘systems’ that FIFA have recorded (some 1600) will now need to be at least in part re-examined within a year.

New tests to perform the laboratory examination of samples infill splash and the heating properties of the turf system have been added. Also new tests for the measurement of the thickness of yarns have been added. Tests must now be performed on all coloured turf samples – therefore all line marking colours will need to be tested just like the parent green turf system. Here are the other new tests/changes;

·      Method for the measurement of free pile height

·      Method for the measurement of infill depth

·      Method for the determination of UV stabiliser content in yarns

·      Method for clarification of the particle size distribution measurement

·      Method for clarification for the measurement of differential scanning calorimetry (DSC)

·      Method for clarification for the measurement of yarn decitex

·      Method for clarification of product identification on woven carpet products

·      Method for clarification of porosity testing on artificial turf systems

·      Method for clarification of yarn thickness measurement

·      The following tests have been removed from the handbook of test methods:

·      Stud slide and stud deceleration removed from laboratory testing

·      Wear simulation with lisport removed from laboratory testing

·      All products used for field markings (lines and logos where applicable) need to be tested as independent products.

·      Only one specific product may be used per field. No combination of different products (different colours, yarn compositions or other) may be used on one single field.

·      Tighter requirements for product test in the laboratory

·      Recommendations for the testing of run-off areas (both with natural and artificial playing surfaces) have been included in this handbook

Category-specific changes


·      A new method to assess infill splash has been introduced for this level of the game

·      Requirement relating to the quality of lines, goals and all relevant playing equipment have been included in the test institute assessment

·      Performance tests in the laboratory after 3020 cycles on the lisport XL including reduced ball roll

·      Ball roll requirements for re-tests reduced from 10m to 8m


·      Performance tests in the laboratory after 6020 cycles on the lisport XL including reduced ball roll

Further information on both the handbook of test methods and the handbook of requirements can be downloaded via these links




FIFA to issue new manual next week

FIFA will issue the new Handbook of Requirements and the Handbook of test methods for the FIFA quality concept for football turf. 

This much talked about update has involved some radical changes to the preparation and evaluation of football turf for FIFA certification.

The new manuals will be available for download next week we will post a link. 

The new manuals will be available for download next week we will post a link. 

The new FIFA quality pro and FIFA quality perhaps making a clearer distinction between community and pro fields this is a welcomed change.  A new Lisport XL is making it debut and new tests for infill splash, heat on surfaces and yarns for UV and thickness to name just some of the changes in this a fairly significant overhaul of the 2012 version.

Sports Labs will be providing a detailed communique on the changes early next week or better still come see us on our stand at FSB next week.

3D Printing at Sports Labs

3D printing the Lisport XL studded roller Inhouse. One of the benefits of owning a 3D printer - you can print your own spare part!


Printing the profiled roller  


Sportstestequip.com the goto site for sports surfaces testing equipment

STE the only dedicated sports surfaces testing equipment supplier, launch their new web site today. An easy to use platform which allows you to purchase what you need online. Alternatively if you require further information you can make an enquiry for the specialist equipment that you have questions about.

Whether you want to buy an infill depth gauge or a AAA device STE can help you with your needs. Quick delivery times and a dedicated set up with the more complex items. Simply go to www.sportstestequip.com for the most competitive quality equipment on the market.

 Depth probe for the measurement of infill depth

Ball roll ramps essential in the maintenance of 3G surfaces

HIC equipment for testing playgrounds                                           

Testing buggy

Glasgow Life deliver further 3G pitches

Sports Labs working for Glasgow Life the Leisure Trust operating the sports facilities for Glasgow City Council upgrade 2 No. 3G pitches Working closely with Glasgow Life and Glasgow City Building Sports Labs provided consultancy services to design, procure and manage the refurbishment of two pitches in Glasgow. The good news is that both pitches were designed to allow football and rugby use, the bad news is that both were hockey pitches and now these facilities are lost to hockey. Hockey in Glasgow has moved to the new Commonwealth games venue so it is not a complete negative for that sport.

Case Study
Case Study.1
Case Study

These refurbishments have reinvigorated what were very dilapidated facilities these are now thriving community based hubs. The biggest beneficiaries of course are rugby who now have excellent training facilities where before there were none! See attached synopsis of the work done to upgrade the facilities.

Banbridge District Council; new 3G pitch for Rathfriland High School

Rathfriland High School gets new 3G pitch Banbridge District Council commissioned a new 3G pitch at Rathfriland High School and Sports Labs Ltd, were fortunate enough to win the tender to offer consultancy services to the Council to deliver the project through a competitive tendering process organized by the Authority.

This particular project involved many differing disciplines such as; submission of planning application to the planning directorate, site investigation works to characterize the ground conditions and negotiation with the South East Library Boards/Sports NI to approve the format, size and position of the pitch on the site. Sports Labs Ltd prepared a detailed specification to tender to the market in NI, which Tony Patterson Contracts were successful in securing.

The photos show the completed construction of the pitch.



Tony Patterson Contracts were first class on this contract and delivered a high quality playing surface with a Fieldturf 60mm artificial turf product and shock pad.

The pitch will be used by the school and local community for football, rugby, gaelic games.

This was a challenging site which demanded great skill and care to develop, the result was a very high quality facility indeed.


Ben Corr, Head of Leisure, Banbridge District Council says, “We found Sports Labs very helpful, they offered excellent professional advice and support. They provided the Council with sound technical guidance and offered good value for money. I would have no hesitation in recommending them for similar projects.”

South African Sports Surface Conference


We are pleased to announce the 1st South African Sports Surface Conference to be held in Johannesburg in mid February.

 This year’s theme is artificial turf for football following the very successful legacy pitches project from the World Cup 2010.

 For further details and registration information please visit: www.sassc.co.za

 We also have a twitter page which you can view at: @SA_SSC

 For anything further please contact Emma Steyn on 071881 0369 or emma@ujsportslabs.co.za

Sports Labs launch major step forward in automation of sports surfaces testing

Sports Labs chose the recent FIFA round robin to launch the next big thing in sports surfaces testing equipment. The 'buggy' as it has affectionately become known places all the major items of sports surfaces testing equipment onto a battery operated buggy. Powered by the internal fuel cell on the buggy all the equipment is automatically placed and retracted via a unique hydraulic ram system which not only supports the kit but is extremely consistent. The kit has already proven its self to be faster, more accurate by reducing operator influence and produces consistent results.

Here Keith and Richard show off the kit to our friends from the other FIFA accredited Test Institutes. To say it went down a storm is an understatement - every Lab should have one!