Updated: May 29, 2020
One of the biggest (and priciest!) decisions we’ve had to make at the Creative Arts and Talent Studio is about the flooring. With over 1800 square feet of dancing space, we wanted to make an economical but safe decision for our dancers. Many of our dancers will literally spend hours each week on these floors, and we wanted to make the right decisions to protect them from injury.
So…I’m an academic…which means that I started to read and research. I had to find out: what, really, is the advantage of a Marley floor? And can a Marley floor be applied to concrete? And how about floating floors? Are they the best option for dancers, too?
After watching videos, reading blogs, and consulting expertise from other studio owners, here’s what I’ve learned:
· Flooring is absolutely critical! A “Marley” floor is basically a generic term for a roll-out vinyl dance flooring. This flooring is actually pretty thin; its surface is beneficial, safe, and useful for dancers. Nevertheless, Marley flooring is only intended to be a performance surface.
· The floor that is beneath the Marley is critical: regardless of what studio your dancer uses, find out what is beneath that vinyl layer! A proper floor is essential for dancers’ safety.
· Another debate exists about the underneath flooring as well. The dance industry has experienced a few extremes. Dancing on wood with no give or on linoleum with too much flex was not a good thing. Thus, hardwood floors as “sprung” floors began to emerge. Unfortunately, some of these were simply too “bouncy;” others had hard spots. Inconsistencies in flooring are a problem for leaping and twirling dancers.
· Because of the Goldilocks problem (too hard vs too soft J), we settled on the latest conclusion from the industry: a “just right” surface is the answer for the Creative Arts and Talent Studio.
Our decision to choose a consistent foam padding, layered with a vinyl plank flooring and topped with a Marley surface was the result. Having read this blog post, you may now know much more than you wanted to about a dance floor (ha!), but it serves as an example of the absolute care and attention with which we are making decisions about your dancer’s needs. From the floors to the skills, your dancer’s safety, learning, and progress are in our hands. It’s a responsibility we are honored to carry; your dancers are our dancers, and we look forward to making the best, most informed decisions along the way!