Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

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eldanielfire
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Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by eldanielfire »

They have had a bad press recently. Jack Willis' injury is being blamed on them in seem quarters, as well as a few more the Scarlets seemed livid with Glasgow's for the burns they got, one blew up in Wales recently.

I know there's an argument that they pitches cause "different sorts of injury" then grass but are the different sorts worse or due to abd maintenance or something? the other argument is "World Rugby approved them" but World Rugby are changing laws on a monthly basis based on safety.

Are the pitches an injury problem and why/why not?
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Laurent »

for old fellows with dodgy knees they are career ending.

to much bounce
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eldanielfire
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by eldanielfire »

Remembered Gloucester are replacing their artificial pitch with a hybrid surface:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-union/42242352
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by kiap »

The fully artificial "turf" is a not much chop, in my view.

Reinforcing natural grass with a percentage of artificial fibres (e.g. Desso) is okay.
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Ulsters Red Hand »

The biggest complaint Scarlets seem to have is the fact that the surface they played on in Glasgow has caused "inconvenient" injuries which is hindering the training regime coming up to a big game, where players are strictly speaking available but can't train fully due to burns/blisters etc
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Nieghorn »

Interesting study here. No significant difference in number of injuries, EXCEPT where cruciate ligaments are concerned...

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20391085
Heymans
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Post by Heymans »

I know the racing doctors advise the players agaisnt using molded studs at the U arena, pushing instead good old screw-ins.
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Plastic Sarrie
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Plastic Sarrie »

The issue with the burns the Scarlets players have got is probably because the pitch was too warm - Sarries players have complained about it in the past, and there has been some talk of watering the pitch on hot days.

That said, it hasn't appeared to be an issue for the last couple of games.
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Post by EverReady »

I got burnt to absolute shit on a new one. Never again
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Nolanator »

Ulsters Red Hand wrote:The biggest complaint Scarlets seem to have is the fact that the surface they played on in Glasgow has caused "inconvenient" injuries which is hindering the training regime coming up to a big game, where players are strictly speaking available but can't train fully due to burns/blisters etc
Seems that the weather played a big part in that. The surface was so dry that it was basically a carpet. It were weather the burns mightn't be as bad.

Edit, mentioned already. :thumbup:
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EverReady
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Post by EverReady »

We played on it in the rain Nols and no exaggeration some had scabs 4+ weeks later. It was the Terenure pitch
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Post by julian »

eldanielfire wrote:They have had a bad press recently. Jack Willis' injury is being blamed on them in seem quarters, as well as a few more the Scarlets seemed livid with Glasgow's for the burns they got, one blew up in Wales recently.

I know there's an argument that they pitches cause "different sorts of injury" then grass but are the different sorts worse or due to abd maintenance or something? the other argument is "World Rugby approved them" but World Rugby are changing laws on a monthly basis based on safety.

Are the pitches an injury problem and why/why not?
A poll is required in these cases.
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Nolanator »

EverReady wrote:We played on it in the rain Nols and no exaggeration some had scabs 4+ weeks later. It was the Terenure pitch
I've only ever played on artificial surfaces (UCD and Lansdowne) in fairly wet conditions. Didn't notice many burns, bit I'm not sure that they're strictly 3G. The pace of the game was mad, though, and the ball bounced differently.
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Petros »

The modern pitches are 4G
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Armchair_Superstar »

Surely South Wales is full of birds who know how to manage carpet burns?
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Post by DragsterDriver »

I’ve played on 4g and wasn’t keen- ached like fook the next day and I was very keen to stay on my feet.
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Post by Diego »

I trained and played on a 4g pitch for two seasons. It takes some getting used to but I didn't see any more injuries than on a grass pitch really. The one we had was pretty good in terms of not getting burns etc too.

In contrast the (grass) pitch I played on at the weekend was a flipping deathtrap.
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Nolanator »

Petros wrote:The modern pitches are 4G
Heh, I meant to write that.
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Post by jolindien »

if you fall, you lose... burnt to the bone.
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Post by utrechtnl »

The burns from the artificial pitches are bad and take time to heal. Kids playing in a final a few weeks ago still have burn injuries from the pitch. One kid got some kind of infection from the burns after playing on one in a 7s tournament. My impression from the team I'm involved with is parents & kids don't like them because of the burns.
There was some kind of scandal in the Netherlands last year about 4g pitches & the chemicals from recycled tyres potential to cause cancer. The original sample that said they were safe was "a few mates of the report author" or something. In the end the government said they were safe again. Possibly cheaper than replacing the +2000 public pitches of this type & the strong industry lobby as major pitch manufacturers are Dutch.
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Post by Edinburgh01 »

If the Glasgow pitch is so bad, why is there not a constant stream of complaints? As others have suggested, there appears to have been a specific issue with heat and dryness of the pitch, or possibly the rubber crumb not having been topped up, rather than it being a generic problem with all 4G.
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Post by eldanielfire »

utrechtnl wrote:The burns from the artificial pitches are bad and take time to heal. Kids playing in a final a few weeks ago still have burn injuries from the pitch. One kid got some kind of infection from the burns after playing on one in a 7s tournament. My impression from the team I'm involved with is parents & kids don't like them because of the burns.
There was some kind of scandal in the Netherlands last year about 4g pitches & the chemicals from recycled tyres potential to cause cancer. The original sample that said they were safe was "a few mates of the report author" or something. In the end the government said they were safe again. Possibly cheaper than replacing the +2000 public pitches of this type & the strong industry lobby as major pitch manufacturers are Dutch.
I think the Netherland's scandal is due to the original 3G pitches made from those recycled tyres.
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Homer »

Just a correction - there really is no such thing as a 4G pitch. The pitches used by Newcastle, Sarries etc. are classic 3G pitches with a long pile and rubber crumb infill.

They do get horrendously hot on warm days (the rubber crumb is usually black) and play better when wet.

As for burns, having also played hockey for 30 years (predominately on sand filled/dressed artificial turf) they are a fucker and take ages to heal.
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Nieghorn »

Discussion elsewhere says brushing needed to loosen beads and stand the 'grass' up. Watering also essential.


Interesting that they need significant maintenance and replacement after something like a decade of regular use. I worked at a private school many years ago where the football guys (gridiron) wanted one. The athletic director reminded them that they cost about a million bucks and that they'd just re-sodded the grass for 30K. Could keep doing grass over and over and not get to that million. I don't think they've had to replace the grass in a decade of use by football in the fall, soccer and rugby in the spring, daily PE classes and lunchtime play in both seasons.

Understandably useful when climate means your pitch is often water-logged.
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by Mog The Almighty »

I think it's crap. If you can't get muddy playing rugby, it's not rugby.

That said, we're forced to use them a bit at the start and end of the season (that being summer) this far north.
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Re: Artificial Pitches: What's the PR verdict of these?

Post by cubby boi »

Edinburgh01 wrote:If the Glasgow pitch is so bad, why is there not a constant stream of complaints? As others have suggested, there appears to have been a specific issue with heat and dryness of the pitch, or possibly the rubber crumb not having been topped up, rather than it being a generic problem with all 4G.
Then is is absolutely essential that the groundsmen of said clubs are ready for every eventuality, preparing the pitch correctly and informing away teams of any methods that they are using to prevent burns to their own players
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Post by Plastic Sarrie »

Nieghorn wrote:Discussion elsewhere says brushing needed to loosen beads and stand the 'grass' up. Watering also essential.


Interesting that they need significant maintenance and replacement after something like a decade of regular use. I worked at a private school many years ago where the football guys (gridiron) wanted one. The athletic director reminded them that they cost about a million bucks and that they'd just re-sodded the grass for 30K. Could keep doing grass over and over and not get to that million. I don't think they've had to replace the grass in a decade of use by football in the fall, soccer and rugby in the spring, daily PE classes and lunchtime play in both seasons.

Understandably useful when climate means your pitch is often water-logged.
So, it's worth noting at Copthall the drainage was horrible, which is why Sarries went synthetic.

The theoretical life of the artificial pitch is 10 years, and cost c£500k.

Where the real saving versus grass is made is that you don't need to employ a specialist groundsman / groundsmen to look after it.

It gets brushed by the maintenance staff a couple of times a week, and then the company that laid it do some maintenance once a month or so.
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Post by bobbity »

Got some very minor burns from the Sixways pitch on a hot day. They look after that pitch though.

It's a hard pitch, my ankles knew about it. No worse than a very well drained and hard grass pitch I'd played on a few weeks before.
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Post by globus »

I never played rugby on one. Had two charity hockey matches on them. Got my hand smashed by a girl, went down (careful) and got knee burns.

All the hockey pitches in Oundle School are now artificial. I remember when Luton FC got their pitch relaid. There was sand everywhere.

I expect the tech has improved since then.

There's a golf course somewhere in the world that has artificial grass. A bit difficult to get a divot!

We were thinking about getting an artificial lawn. That would mean I could sell the lawnmowers but it looked so false, so I'm on regular mower duty.

It's a postage stamp anyway. The other one is a field/paddock. That would look very odd and the horses might not like it.
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Post by Poshprop »

I've played on the artificial pitch at the Arms Park a couple of times and had no problems there. One lad had a nasty face rash from being dragged along the surface though. I have also played on rock hard grounds in Zimbabwe and here in September and May and lost way more skin on those. Don't think the artificial pitches are too much of a concern for anyone apart from the moneyed clubs and they have the resources to make them work. The main bonus of the artificial pitch is you never have to worry about the game being off
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Post by Plastic Sarrie »

Poshprop wrote:I've played on the artificial pitch at the Arms Park a couple of times and had no problems there. One lad had a nasty face rash from being dragged along the surface though. I have also played on rock hard grounds in Zimbabwe and here in September and May and lost way more skin on those. Don't think the artificial pitches are too much of a concern for anyone apart from the moneyed clubs and they have the resources to make them work. The main bonus of the artificial pitch is you never have to worry about the game being off
Unless everywhere around the ground is snowed in :lol: :x
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Post by Poshprop »

Plastic Sarrie wrote:
Poshprop wrote:I've played on the artificial pitch at the Arms Park a couple of times and had no problems there. One lad had a nasty face rash from being dragged along the surface though. I have also played on rock hard grounds in Zimbabwe and here in September and May and lost way more skin on those. Don't think the artificial pitches are too much of a concern for anyone apart from the moneyed clubs and they have the resources to make them work. The main bonus of the artificial pitch is you never have to worry about the game being off
Unless everywhere around the ground is snowed in :lol: :x
I forgot the snowflake option
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Post by Kiwias »

kiap wrote:The fully artificial "turf" is a not much chop, in my view.

Reinforcing natural grass with a percentage of artificial fibres (e.g. Desso) is okay.
Desso has its own problems but it should not be described as artificial turf. It is effectively natural turf as far as the player is concerned. I still believe that natural turf can withstand very high levels of use as long as the ideal soil base, drainage, and irrigation are installed, and genuinely professional maintenance is carried out.
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Post by Market Square Hero »

Kiwias wrote:
kiap wrote:The fully artificial "turf" is a not much chop, in my view.

Reinforcing natural grass with a percentage of artificial fibres (e.g. Desso) is okay.
Desso has its own problems but it should not be described as artificial turf. It is effectively natural turf as far as the player is concerned. I still believe that natural turf can withstand very high levels of use as long as the ideal soil base, drainage, and irrigation are installed, and genuinely professional maintenance is carried out.
I think Murrayfield is Desso now - a great improvement from how it was a few years ago (though that was primarily down to a Nemotode infection ...which, IIRC, came from mud on Munster players boots). There are multiple banks of mobile 'daylights' that go over the pitch on off days to keep the grass in top shape (if one didn't know better you'd think the groundstaff were growing the other grass ...there's a thought, a handy sideline revenue generator for Scottish Rugby and might also explain Glasgow's performances of late!).
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Post by kiap »

Kiwias wrote:
kiap wrote:The fully artificial "turf" is a not much chop, in my view.

Reinforcing natural grass with a percentage of artificial fibres (e.g. Desso) is okay.
Desso has its own problems but it should not be described as artificial turf. It is effectively natural turf as far as the player is concerned.

Who is describing it as artificial turf?
Kiwias wrote:I still believe that natural turf can withstand very high levels of use as long as the ideal soil base, drainage, and irrigation are installed, and genuinely professional maintenance is carried out.
It's one thing to have good turf for park rugby. Another story inside big stadiums.

Why do you reckon they bother with putting a couple of acres on roller skates?

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Post by Kiwias »

Market Square Hero wrote:
Kiwias wrote:
kiap wrote:The fully artificial "turf" is a not much chop, in my view.

Reinforcing natural grass with a percentage of artificial fibres (e.g. Desso) is okay.
Desso has its own problems but it should not be described as artificial turf. It is effectively natural turf as far as the player is concerned. I still believe that natural turf can withstand very high levels of use as long as the ideal soil base, drainage, and irrigation are installed, and genuinely professional maintenance is carried out.
I think Murrayfield is Desso now - a great improvement from how it was a few years ago (though that was primarily down to a Nemotode infection ...which, IIRC, came from mud on Munster players boots). There are multiple banks of mobile 'daylights' that go over the pitch on off days to keep the grass in top shape (if one didn't know better you'd think the groundstaff were growing the other grass ...there's a thought, a handy sideline revenue generator for Scottish Rugby and might also explain Glasgow's performances of late!).
The issue with Desso is how to deal with any uneven sinking of groups of the in-ground fibres, which does seem to happen infrequently. The stuff above ground is natural grass.
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Post by Plastic Sarrie »

Tbf, they had (might still do?) desso at Vicarage Road, and still do at the Mad Stad and Liberty. If you look after it, and replace every 5 years it's absolutely grand for dual use stadiums.
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Post by Homer »

Poshprop wrote:I've played on the artificial pitch at the Arms Park a couple of times and had no problems there. One lad had a nasty face rash from being dragged along the surface though. I have also played on rock hard grounds in Zimbabwe and here in September and May and lost way more skin on those. Don't think the artificial pitches are too much of a concern for anyone apart from the moneyed clubs and they have the resources to make them work. The main bonus of the artificial pitch is you never have to worry about the game being off
The other big advantage of an artificial turf pitch is that you can use it multiple times a day, every day of the week if you so wish...
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Post by kiap »

Kiwias wrote:The stuff above ground is natural grass.
Not quite.

Most of it, of course, is but the reinforcing fibres also extend a few centimetres above ground. It's hybrid turf, but it works well.

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Post by Plastic Sarrie »

Homer wrote:
Poshprop wrote:I've played on the artificial pitch at the Arms Park a couple of times and had no problems there. One lad had a nasty face rash from being dragged along the surface though. I have also played on rock hard grounds in Zimbabwe and here in September and May and lost way more skin on those. Don't think the artificial pitches are too much of a concern for anyone apart from the moneyed clubs and they have the resources to make them work. The main bonus of the artificial pitch is you never have to worry about the game being off
The other big advantage of an artificial turf pitch is that you can use it multiple times a day, every day of the week if you so wish...
It does reduce the lifespan though.

From a business point of view, I've been told that Worcester essentially rent theirs out 6 days a week to a 5 a side league. Makes for a nice, constant income stream.

Sarries can't do that because of the public use of the stadium as part of their agreement with the council.
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