As of January 2020, Schmitz Foam Products’ popular ProPlay-Sport20 shock and drainage pad will be replaced by a renewed version. The change is necessary to answer the demand for the product and to remain on par with the latest trends and developments.
Schmitz Foam Products introduced ProPlay-Sport20 in the early 2000s, when shock pads were still considered a luxury. Thanks to its robustness and the excellent performance it delivers, ProPlay-Sport20 has since become the most used shock pad for artificial grass sport systems globally. The industry has progressed, and the time had come to rethink the product’s concept, says Jens Ulb, Chief Commercial Officer at Schmitz Foam Products.“ProPlay-Sport20 is produced from foams that the foam industry consider redundant. In the last few years Schmitz Foam Products has experienced an above average growth which exceeded the growth of the foam industry. As we foresaw that this could lead to challenges in sourcing our raw materials in the run-up to our peak-season, we decided to review the design of this front runner.”
The renewed ProPlay-Sport20 provides similar or even better sport technical performance, is equally robust and offers a drainage capacity that matches that of the original ProPlay-Sport20. “What differs is that the future edition will consist of an 8mm foam layer that has exclusively been produced for Schmitz Foam Products, combined with 12mm foam flakes sourced from foams which were deemed redundant. It simply combines the best of both worlds”. No additives are involved in bonding the polyethylene foam layer and polyethylene foam flakes to a single sheet. It is done with thermal bonding, similar to the way Schmitz Foam Products produced the ProPlay-Sport20. “As this heat-bonding is done by a state-of-the-art laminator, it is impossible for the foam layers to separate spontaneously. The only time they will come apart is when Schmitz Foam Products recycles these pads by the time they no longer have any meaningful purpose.”
Renewed product, known performance
Over the past few months, the renewed ProPlay-Sport20 has been tested by international testing institutes. Since the shock pad comes with similar or even better sport technical characteristics, system test efforts if desired can be kept to a minimum. This ensures a smooth industry transition from the original ProPlay-Sport20 to the renewed version. Jens Ulb continues; “Due to its look you can differ between the two ProPlay-Sport20 pads, but an installer or athlete will not experience any difference with our renewed shock and drainage pads.
The shift to the new version also means that Schmitz Foam Products will cease producing the ProPlay-MP. “The ProPlay-MP was mainly used for multi-sports courts. As the sports experience on multi-sports courts has also evolved over the years, it is our recommendation to also use the ProPlay-Sport20 for this type of surface. The pad delivers a superior performance and experience for these fields at a competitive price,” says Ulb.
Schmitz Foam Products has already started producing the new ProPlay-Sport20. Jens Ulb is convinced that they will have sufficient stock from 2020 onwards. “With this evolution we combine the best of both worlds with which we are ready to secure the delivery of a robust shock and drainage pad to any future-proof artificial grass system.”