According to Sports Business Journal, basketball is the most popular participatory sport in the United States, with over 27.1 million people over the age of 6 picking up a basketball at least once in 2021.
Over 8 million people claim to play at least 13 times each year. One of the great things about basketball is that you don’t need a lot of people, equipment, or uniforms. Of course, having a nice surface makes it a lot more fun. If you’ve been thinking about building a basketball court at your home, this blog post will tell you everything you need to know!
Steps to Building an Outdoor Basketball Court
Choose the Location
Full courts measure 94 by 50 feet, which is a large amount of space, but that’s one of the great things about basketball. Many homes don’t have a full court. Half courts are 47-by-50 or 42-by-50 feet.
You may want to allow for two to three feet around the outside of the court for sidelines and space for the hoop, but there’s no reason your space has to meet specific regulations. You may be able to fudge a little on the measurements if you’re just looking for a place to shoot hoops.
One of the most important things is to have a level site, but you can always get an excavator to create a level field. McConnell & Associates handles site inspection, design, and engineering to find the best location in your yard for the court.
Prepare the Subsurface
Once you’ve found the site location, it’s time to prepare the ground. You’ll want to dig the site to a depth of 8 inches. Make sure you check with your local utilities for any underground equipment. Just as the ground surface needs to be level, so does this hole. If one side of the court is deeper than the other, the court will slant.
Next, lay in 4 inches of compacted gravel in the hole. Spread it evenly. The gravel is a base that will drain water when the court gets wet. Next, you’ll frame the site with 2x4s. The top of the board should be flush with the ground. Then, you add rebar to support the court.
You’ll lay concrete as part of the subsurface, but you can use asphalt or concrete for the surface. Concrete is usually more affordable, but asphalt is a little easier on your joints when you’re playing.
McConnell & Associates can make recommendations for the surface based on your needs. We can also add coatings to an outdoor basketball court to protect it from the sun’s UV rays and to increase non-skid properties. Our experts have a wide variety of time-tested materials from leading manufacturers that make your court work great.
Choosing and Laying the Hoop
When you’re laying the slab, secure your hoops and any other permanent equipment. In-ground hoops are the most secure, but you do need to position them correctly to the court. Hoops are 10 feet tall, but if you have younger children, consider adjustable hoops to let them have some early success.
The hoops get set on the short sides of the court in the center. Generally speaking, the hoops should overhang the court at 4-feet, but this can vary based on the hoops you buy. The manual will give you more detailed information. You will need a hole at least 3-foot deep to set most hoops, but you should also check the manual for specifications. Don’t forget to let the concrete cure for the appropriate amount of time.
Marking the Court
Once the court surface is ready, you will need to paint the court, marking the free throw, center, and side lines. You can find all the markings on a regulation court here. Choose the ones that are important to your game.
If you DIY your markings, stencil them in with painter’s tape. Better yet, ask a professional to handle the job because the experts can get it done quickly and cleanly for a great look. The McConnell & Associates team can also help you install any lighting or bleachers that you want for your basketball court. We have years of experience installing and maintaining courts at sports facilities, schools, and homes.
What Are the Benefits of Having a Basketball Court at Home?
Whether you just enjoy a pickup game with your buddies or want to play HORSE with the kids, a basketball court is a nice convenience for your home. Here are just a few reasons you should consider a basketball court at home.
Play Area for Families
Your basketball court keeps the kids at home where you know what they’re doing and who they’re playing with. The family can learn to improve their communication skills and learn teamwork while they’re shooting hoops safe at home. Your basketball court can also be a workout area or play area for other outdoor activities, like learning to ride a bike or doing cone drills.
Increased Home Value
The pandemic changed how we live. More families are staying home and using their outdoor living space in new ways. A professionally installed basketball court is an improvement to your home that adds perceived value when you’re ready to sell and value to you when you’re living there.
Homebuyers who want a home that has a healthy lifestyle will be drawn to your listing. You’ll have the added convenience of being able to play basketball right in your own backyard without wasting time driving to the gym or park.
Patio Space for Events
Your basketball court can easily transform into a party space for a weekend event. Put up a tent or set up tables on the court for a birthday party or impromptu summer cookout. The court will be sturdier for tables and chairs than the grass, making it safer for seniors and children. You’ll enjoy the added patio space if you like to entertain.
McConnell & Associates can help you design, build, and maintain a basketball court that your family will love. Schedule an appointment with our estimator to learn more.