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Discussion: Sliding on Turf - Big League Dreams Fields

Posted Discussion
Sept. 16, 2013
STL0
47 posts
Sliding on Turf - Big League Dreams Fields
For any of you that have played on the Big League Dreams fields in Vegas, how is it sliding on the turf when running the bases or playing outfield. I slide a lot but am wondering if pants and sliders will help or will the turf tear the pants and your leg up? Also, is it a lot faster than sliding in dirt and do you need to start slides earlier? Any advice from folks that have played there on sliding would be appreciated.
Sept. 16, 2013
STL0
47 posts
Maybe I should have started with the question of whether or not the infields are turf. I have been told that the infields are turf but the pictures on the BLD web site sure look like they are dirt.
Sept. 16, 2013
the wood
1085 posts
The infields are indeed turf @ BLD. From what I've seen you'll most likely want to slide later because the turf has more friction and slows your slide down a bit. It is fairly soft though... but the guys who live in LV can probably offer a more definitive answer.
BW
Sept. 16, 2013
damaged goods
9 posts
Stl0 from one slider to another have at it But The Wood is correct start a little later.
Sept. 17, 2013
hoovedog
Men's 50
73 posts
In Tx our BLD has had 4 different players who have slid with raw spots, that later developed into a rare Staph, because of sweat and saliva that cooks in the turf and never gets cleaned.Plus like the wood says,,you don't slide far.
Sept. 17, 2013
Olden Slow
Men's 65
176 posts
Think of sliding on Velcro. I wear sliders with pads under them..
Sept. 18, 2013
4x4
Men's 65
595 posts
At golden Eagle I slid into 3rd base....pretty much finished me for a long time....picked 21 little pieces of rubber out of me - (that we found) & picked up a nasty infection that lasted for months....that stuff is just plain nasty & does not drain naturally so any blood, spit, flesh remnants left cooking in it are waiting just for you with a burn (if lucky) & infection (if not so lucky) to put you down.....I will never, ever slide on that stuff again....
Sept. 18, 2013
surf88
Men's 60
874 posts
I have played there and I do slide when the situation arises. I wear knee pads and sliding shorts beneath my pants. I did not experience a problem sliding at this complex. The turf there is of a quality level.
Sept. 19, 2013
stick8
1298 posts
We (OKI Players) played at field of dreams last year and if you wear sliding pads sliding was relatively safe. Sometimes on field turf you actually slide past the bag. Be careful on that and good luck!!
Sept. 20, 2013
STL0
47 posts
Thanks for the comments. I always wear sliders with pads and pants so I guess it's slide away and make sure I don't drag my hand. I just hope I don't slide a little later and jam my ankle into the bag. Good luck to everyone in Vegas.
Sept. 20, 2013
audieh
Men's 60
242 posts
In Florida at a turf field we play football on they brush and dis-infect the field regularly. However, turf fields are noted for staph infections based on what I have read on the NFL teams. Play hard but play clean! lol
Sept. 20, 2013
Marv19
Men's 60
444 posts
STLO The bases are not attached to the ground like the ones we grew up with. At least not here anyway. Here they are held to the turf with grippers or teeth like plastic. If you reach out and grab or hit the bag as you slide it will most likely dislodge.

Interesting comments about turf. Im no Lab technician but most germs can't live in the environment of a hot synthetic field. If it were the case we'd have a horrible problem nationally with the NFL, College and High School turf. This forum is the first I have ever heard of any infections being passed by this means. I'd suggest further research on this issue before blaming turf for these problems.
Sept. 20, 2013
audieh
Men's 60
242 posts
A simple Google search would show some problems with turf fields. Here is Florida on hot days the field is so hot and the heat radiates off so bad it is unplayable for extended periods. Personally I have seen more knee injuries on the turf than on the grass for flag football players. Perhaps this is somewhat due to players using cleats on turf rather than using turf shoes. Having said that though I like the turf for softball as the bounce of the ball is true and it stays consistent after a rain. The following info was from a University of Arkansas study from 2009 which touches on infections.

A recent survey of 1,511 active NFL players by the NFL players association found that 73% of the players preferred playing on a natural grass system, while only 18% preferred artificial turf (4). Nine-percent of the players had no preference.

Player injuries
There is a lack of research comparing injuries incurred on new in-fill artificial fields vs. natural grass fields (5). There are data indicating that the traditional artificial turf fields increased athlete injury, primarily due to increased surface hardness.
Although actual data are not available, anecdotal data are available from NFL players. Players were asked in a 2006 survey “Which surface do you think causes more soreness and fatigue to play on?”. Five-percent felt like natural grass systems increased fatigue, while 74% felt that artificial turf systems were more responsible for fatigue (5). Twenty-one percent felt they were the same. In the open comments section of the survey, the most common comment was “make all fields grass to prevent injuries.”

Potential increases in infections
An aspect of synthetic turf that is now receiving increased scrutiny is the potential for increased incidences of infections among players that play primarily on in-fill systems. In a report titled “Texas Football Succumbs to Virulent Staph Infection From Turf”, at least 276 football players were reported to be infected with an antibiotic-resistant staph infection, a rate of 517 for each 100,000 individuals (6). The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta reported a rate for the general population of 32 in 100,000. These infections were primarily associated with increased skin abrasions associated with synthetic turf and the risk of infection that might occur off the field from infections. In-fill systems must now be routinely treated with special disinfectants to reduce the likelihood of infections, adding another cost to the maintenance of these fields.

High temperatures
Artificial fields cannot be played on all the time due to temperature build-up on warm-sunny days. Artificial field surface temperatures have been documented as high as 199°F on a sunny day with an air temperature of 98°F (7). Researchers at Brigham Young University reported that the surface temperature of a synthetic football field on campus averaged 117°F, with a daily high of 157°F (8). On an adjacent natural grass field the surface temperature averaged 78°F, with a daily high of 89°F. Researchers at Penn State University studied the effect of using irrigation to reduce surface temperatures of synthetic fields and discovered that temperature could be decreased with irrigation, but the effects were short-lived (20 minutes) (9). Because of these high temperatures, an artificial field will remain largely unusable during warm days. Additionally, practicing on an artificial field could increase the incidence of heat stroke, muscle cramping, and overall athlete fatigue. Coaches holding practices on synthetic fields will need to monitor athlete health more closely and will need to limit the duration of practices on these surfaces to reduce the risk of athlete injury.
Oct. 14, 2013
STL0
47 posts
Here is the post mordem on sliding at BLD. It was actually a little faster than sliding on dirt but not much and it was way easier on the body than sliding in dirt. I'll caveat that by saying that I wear pants and sliders with pads underneath but I'd take sliding there over sliding on dirt any day of the week.
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