An addition of any sort to your school is an exciting one, but few add-ons beat the thrill of a new gym space. Get ready to host awesome assemblies, heart-stopping games, and health-boosting phy-ed classes that help all students be at their best.

While the end results of building a gym are undoubtedly exciting, getting there takes quite a bit of forethought during construction. Here, our team at SportsGraphics will discuss important things to consider when building a new gym. 

Our methods are proven, and we know we can help you get the look and atmosphere you want in your facility.

Create Blueprints, Then Imagine the Design 

After the architects you have hired complete the full designs for your new structure, you can begin to envision your new space's interior design. To create an unbeatable atmosphere within your athletic facilities, you need to consider broadcasting your program's achievements on a large scale and showing off your impeccable school branding taste.

At SportsGraphics, our experts can help you choose the best additions for your facility. Our team offers a variety of safety products, like wall pads, and we custom print your logos, text, and graphics on them so they don't fade or peel away. This enhances the appearance of your facilities and helps establish pride and home-field advantage. 

Here are some of the other products we offer:

  • Custom Banners: Banners create a sense of nostalgia and excitement because they are reminders of when your team won the district, regional, or national title, promoting spirit and enthusiasm for the team and fans.

  • Wall Graphics: Whether placed in the school hallways, the gymnasium, or locker rooms, wall graphics create a stunning logo unique to your school's theme and branding.

  • Window Graphics: Customization is key, and whether you want to showcase your school colors or mascot, custom window decals create a unique visual graphic that catches the eye of students and visitors.

  • Step Graphics: If your bleachers are looking bland, step graphics can enhance them by displaying custom logos, colors, and any other features as to why your school is the best.

  • Bleacher Safety Curtains: Keeping your players and visitors safe is your top priority, and bleaching your safety curtains helps remove the risk of accidents and injuries that can happen under them. They come in custom fits and are made from a durable material with easy installation that will enhance the overall safety of your gymnasium.

Each of these products varies in cost, and it is important to factor the products you choose into your budget for your new building.

Plan for the Future

No matter what level of athletics you are in charge of, it's crucial to design and construct your new building with thoughts of a potential expansion for the future. 

In high-revenue environments, such as college and professional sports, a time may come when your new coach may want new facilities and designs for current facilities. If so, consider designing a new gym with room around it for potential expansions and renovations. 

Planning for the future of your facility before construction even begins can save you money in the long run and allow the process to go much more smoothly.

Research the Best Team for Your Project 

The most important aspect of building any new gym or facility is finding a reputable team to care for your needs. It is important to research ahead of time, speak with others who have done business with them, and then talk with the company itself. You need to ensure the company you hire is competent, for your stress and for the sake of the project's results.

Want to learn more about why an all-around provider of equipment is important? Check out our school branding blog on the subject.

Consult Your School Brand

In today's competitive day and age, every space in your school represents your brand and is more important to its success than ever – and your new gym is no exception. Branding serves various purposes for schools, from fostering student pride to making everyday classes more exciting.

We Are Teachers explains, "Your school brand is synonymous with how you’re perceived by your students and throughout your community. It’s what people immediately think when they drive by or your school comes up in conversation." 

So, how do you tell if your new gym adheres to your execution of school branding? If you don't have a consistent brand in the first place, this is all but impossible, but if you already have one, consulting your style guide is a great place to start. 

When rebranding a school, a style guide serves as your directory for all the nitty-gritty stuff that makes up a brand: fonts, logos, colors, and more. Adhere your new gym to this, and you're well on your way to success.

Consider Athlete Safety

Gym wall padding is more than just a branding opportunity. It's one of the few layers of protection between your athletes and the nasty consequences of concussive injury.

While budget permitting, you can rarely, if ever, have too much wall padding; you'll need to pay special attention to the sports that you know will frequently be played in your gym space in order to satisfy your safety needs. For instance, volleyball courts must prioritize different padding from a general physical education space.

When in doubt, more tends to be better, but your provider of wall mats should help you make smart decisions.

Tips for Updating Older Facilities 

If you aren't starting from the ground up, that's ok! There are several ways to breathe new life into an existing gym:

Add Some Color

Painting the gym will make the lighting look more modern and be the perfect backdrop for the other suggestions. Wall murals are customary in gymnasiums.

Invest in Graphics

Every gym needs to have a huge mural of its mascot with the name of the school written across the walls. Muralists are very expensive. You pay for the design, and you pay by the hour, and there is always the mess and the time involved. 

3M has developed a digital film graphic that allows you to see the image before the image is applied to the wall. It is also a fraction of the cost for a painter, yet it looks just like a painting. Now that your color is on the walls, it is time to decorate.

Create a Cohesive Look

Bleacher Curtains, also known as "Bleacher Enclosures," can do wonders for the look of old bleachers in an old gym. These are very affordable for the actual impact of color and style it will have on your space. They are put on the sides of the open ends of the bleachers and are used to keep children from playing underneath the seats. 

When you are dealing with a company, make sure you ask if they do their in-house printing. This will save you money and time. The larger companies have flat-bed printers in their facility, which will allow the entire enclosure to be printed instead of a small square in the middle of a plain end closure.

Spruce it Up with Custom Padding

Gymnasiums are used so much more these days, from kickball to physical fitness classes. Padding more than just the area underneath their basketball hoops has become standard safety practice. Since it's a liability issue, have your pads "wow" your audience. 

New technology in printing allows some manufacturers of wall pads to print scenic vistas or mascots that come to life. This will no doubt be what your students and visitors notice when they walk into your gym. 

Update with LEDs and Feeds

Some high schools are trying to invest in the scorer's table with LED screens and advertisement feeds. Of course, those are state-of-the-art, as well as the price tag. There are companies out there that still make scoring tables that are completely padded and will coordinate with the other products mentioned. These padded score tables are an affordable alternative. 

Remember, the coordinated color scheme, mascot, and lettering make the difference between mismatched items or a real defined, designer look. It is best to work with one manufacturer that will design all of these items for you. You would be surprised how many different shades of red there are. Working with one company eliminates trying to match previously purchased products.

SportsGraphics: School Branding & More

If you are looking for state-of-the-art protective equipment and the ability to custom print your school's colors, fonts, championships, mascots, and more on that equipment, contact SportsGraphics today. 

Each of our products is handmade in our Clarion, Iowa headquarters to ensure it is of the highest quality. Our experts will help you design and install your products and offer fair and competitive pricing.

To learn more about our products and services or to request a quote, give us a call at 800-257-6405 or message us on our contact page today.