Acoustic Isolation of Gymnasia

A gym by its very nature is a place where people participate in noisy activities – running, jumping, shouting, ball sports and weight lifting etc are all part of typical gym usage; any construction must withstand this treatment whilst maintaining acoustic separation to prevent noise and structural vibration transmission.

Of primary consideration are nearby rooms- above, below or adjacent to the gymnasium. The comfort of the people in these rooms, especially sensitive areas such as IT centres, offices, auditoria, residential or libraries mean that the gym will require acoustic and vibration isolation.

The most significant problem is impact. Activities such as running on treadmills and dropping weights can cause significant energy to be transmitted into a building structure which causes it to vibrate. This vibration is carried around the building and often causes an undesirable booming noise when re-radiated as sound.

Floating Floor Types

The most effective way of controlling impact noise is a floating floor. A correctly designed floating floor will take into account the way the structure responds to vibration, so that the floor absorbs the impact energy rather than passing into the structure.

A floating floor supported by metal springs is by far the most effective choice because springs respond instantaneously and can be designed to avoid exciting the main structure. Our sprung floors can allow a gym to be situated in previously unviable locations.

Concrete systems such as our FS are high mass so are very robust and most effective at controlling noise. Our lightweight MFS system is suitable for lower impact activities or where pouring concrete is not desirable.

Mason UK have carried out extensive research on the performance of our floating floors, both in house and with the support of Salford University.

One of the most major factors which affect the design of a floating floor is the response of the existing structure. We can tune our floating floors to suit, this must be done otherwise the risk is the floating floor will be ineffective or could make the problem worse.

Please see the video below showing our portable test floor. To help understand what will be the best solution we are happy to attend the site and carry out drop tests. We would seek to work with the project acoustic consultant to provide confidence that we have the correct solution.

Isolated Walls

If undesirable noise results from music rather than vibration from impact, then creating a full ‘box-in-box’ can provide excellent isolation. Isolated walls and ceilings can be installed which greatly attenuate music and other noise generated by gym activities.

For walls, using our SWW or NPS wall isolators at the base, AB-716 head restraint at the top and DNSB Acoustic sway braces to provide lateral support will ensure no rigid connection between the isolated wall and the main building structure.

We can also construct slam walls, using our DSSB spring walls ties to allow medicine balls to be thrown directly against the wall.

Suspended Ceilings

We have a comprehensive range of ceiling hangers which can complete the lid of the ‘box-in-box’. Spring hangers such as our 30N series can attenuate foot fall and impact and our lower cost rubber hangers such as our HDQF-A are very effective against air borne noise when combined with a mass barrier ceiling.

The use of these products also creates an air gap which increases the acoustic performance.

Conclusion

Mason UK has extensive experience and can design a system to meet the requirements of your project. We can also design bespoke products for aspects such as hung punch bags. Typical products are listed below, and past gymnasium projects are listed down in our projects page here.

The best way to discover the solution for isolating your gymnasium, with your particular needs, is to contact our acoustic design engineers.

Typical Products Used