With some fitness equipment, contact noise is being created while exercising. While doing a workout using certain equipment, weights are repeatedly being pulled up and let down. When they are let down, the weights often forcefully drop on the floor or the fitness equipment. Since these weights often weigh a lot, the transmission of energy is big enough to cause a 'bang'. This thumb causes a phenomenon called contact noise. Other fitness and sports equipment that cause contact noise are exercise bikes and threadmills.
What is contact noise?
Contact noise comes into existence when a source (appliance or machine) causes its foundation to vibrate. This movement is called resonance or vibration and causes one of the most common noise issues. Depending on their frequency, resonances can make big parts of a foundation resonate. The problem is often perceived as audible and tangible vibration. In case of appliances and machines, contact noise is often perceived as a low hum. The best way to treat contact noise is to tackle it at its source, which in this case is the fitness equipment of a gym. Overall, problems with contact noise can be rather easily be solved, using various vibration insulating products such as Regufoam.
Insulating fitness equipment
A gym in the south of the Netherlands struggled with this issue and inquired us to get help. The neighbours of the appartments above the gym complained about the thumping sound during its opening hours.
In order to decouple the fitness equipment, also reffered to as a floating set-up, Regufoam is applied. Regufoam is designed for insulating vibration from various sources, such as appliances, industrial machines, washing machines, loudspeakers, (musical) instruments, and also for fitness and sports equipment.
The gym's owner of our example chose to insulate all his fitness equipment with Regufoam type D220 with a thickness of 25mm. The pieces of Regufoam were cut to size using a sharp knife, a little bit bigger than the legs themselves, and placed under various fitness machines. In this case, the legs of the machines were flat, allowing the pressure to be distributed well across the piece of Regufoam (rendering a pressure distributing supporting plate unnecessary). By making the Regufoam pieces slightly bigger than the legs, visitors were prevented from stubbing their toes.
Contact noise caused by dumbbells
Training with dumbbells can cause contact noise. Often weights are often (too) forcefully dropped on the floor or in a rack after training, resulting in a audible and tangible thumb. The owner of the gym came up with a creative solution: obligating the use of Regufoam mats. The Regufoam mats that were made available also solved this problem. The dumbbells are now placed on the mats instead of on the floor. By means of a poster, the gym's visitors are requested to make use of the mats. We are thankful to the gym's owner for the pictures he sent and his reaction:
"I didn't hear anything, which means that there was no or at least very little noise. I just received three more dampers, thank you very much! Tonight, I will place them under the machine with screw-on feet. Then, all the fitness equipment will be decoupled. The big room in the back is now provided with posters that ask the visitors to make use of the purple mats under their dumbbells. Personally, I do not notice any vibration from the floor. Before, the floor in my office would vibrate when somebody was using the fitness equipment or dropped a dumbbell."
Points of attention
In this example the gym's owner made use of the purple coloured Regufoam D220. This type contains a density of 220Kg/m³ and is sturdy enough to decouple (most) of the fitness machines well, without undermining their stability. The right type depends on the pressure (weight of the fitness machine) and the foundation. Heavier types of fitness equipment may require using a Regufoam with a higher density, type D300 with a thickness of 25mm (also for dumbbells). Regufoam with higher densities can carry higher loads.
Do you have any questions concerning this topic or would you like to receive a product sample? Please feel free to contact us.