Which floorings are required by FIBA for high-level basketball games?

Basketball floors can be fixed or removable, but they must be wooden. The requirements for obtaining FIBA Level 1 certification do not end there: FIBA also takes into consideration impact, absorption, vertical deformation, and ball bounce.

FIBA issues its own certification, the FIBA Certificate of Approval, for indoor sports flooring that differs in terms of design and materials, provided that it satisfies requirements that guarantee its quality.

There are two prerequisites for this certificate:

  • The manufacturer must be an official member or collaborator of the FIBA Equipment & Venue Centre in one of two categories: wooden sports flooring or synthetic sports flooring.
  • The product must be certified by an external laboratory in compliance with European standard EN14904:2006 for indoor sports floors or with the older German standard DIN 18032.

The FIBA certificate has limited validity and specifies the level of competition for which the floors can be used (Level 1, 2, or 3).

Minimum requirements for FIBA-approved basketball floors

Olympics, world championships, continental championships, tournaments, and qualifications. Top-level basketball games cannot be held on just any court; flooring and equipment must satisfy FIBA Level 1 requirements. Which specific requirements does a sports floor have to fulfill to obtain Level 1 approval?

The basketball federation’s requirements are listed in the document “Official Basketball Rules — Basketball Equipment,” which was approved by the FIBA Central Board. Chapter 15 specifies that Level 1 playing surfaces may be fixed or removable, but they must be wooden. They must also have certain specified dimensions, support the weight of basketball stanchions without being damaged and have anti-reflective properties.

Within the scope of these requirements, FIBA considers the uniformity of floor behavior to be very important (whether the floor is fixed or removable). This is influenced by the uniformity of the sub-base and the wood system’s joints.

Why is this so important for high-level basketball? Unlike other indoor sports, the interaction between the ball and the floor is fundamentally important in how the sport is played. Not only do the athletes need a uniform response to their movements, but the ball must always bounce consistently.