Why all gymnasiums should have acoustic foam panels

Blog provided by The Foam Factory

For many schools, gymnasiums are multi-purpose buildings that host a variety of different events. Their main function is for PE class and sports activities, but they are also used for announcements, school events, graduations, and pep rallies. Since gyms are usually constructed mainly for sports, this presents some acoustic challenges.

Hearing speakers, music, or any other distinctive sounds can be harder in an enclosed space with many flat surfaces. You’ve probably heard the echo of basketballs bouncing, sneakers squeaking, and footsteps pounding the ground the moment you get close to a gym. Gyms are usually completely enclosed spaces with hardwood floors, concrete walls, and completely covered, semi-hollow roofs. This causes them to be heavily susceptible to echoes and loud noise.

This phenomenon is because of the science behind echoes and reverberation. Sound waves are vibrations traveling through the air. When these vibrations meet hard surfaces, they bounce off and can be amplified by the shape of the room if sound waves are continually being reflected by hard surfaces. This results in echoes and noise pollution.

The best way to address this issue is by changing the character of the surfaces within a room so that it becomes harder for sound waves to reflect off them. This can be done with sound proofing foam or acoustic foam, which absorbs sound waves instead of reflecting them. When sound vibrations reach acoustic foam panels, the foam absorbs their energy and dissipates some of it as heat. Since the sound waves aren’t freely bouncing across the room, this results in a better quality of sound and less unwanted noise travelling to the ears of listeners.

Acoustic foam can be easily installed using adhesives, tape, or pins. It has been used in many other locations with “live” sound, such as churches, meeting halls, and concert venues. Most of the time, you’ll find it in recording studios to make sure musicians and voiceover artists get the best and most clear sound quality for their recordings. Acoustic foam has been a reliable sound absorber in all of these locations, and it will surely help you control the sound in your gym.

Be sure to browse The Foam Factory’s collection of acoustic foam products for all your sound absorbing needs.