Study of Outdoor Sports Light

In this blog series, we will simplify the complex field of outdoor sports lighting and provide you with key ideas to determine if it is suitable for your sports field.

This is the first blog of a series that covers sports flood lights. These lights are commonly used for sports fields such as baseball, football, soccer, tennis courts, hockey rinks, and more. In this blog, we will highlight the significant differences between a sports flood light and a regular flood light. While regular floods are often used as a lower cost option, a sports flood light is a specialty fixture intended for outdoor sports fields.

When selecting the right fixture for your facility/field, it is crucial to consider light level requirements. These requirements can vary depending on the classification of the field, the level of competition, the users of the facility, existing light levels, and existing light sources being used. For instance, in a university football field, the recommended light levels range from 200 lux/20 footcandles to 1000 lux/100 footcandles on the horizontal and 50 lux/5 footcandles to 300 lux/30 footcandles. Comparing the light levels from a sports flood light to a regular flood can provide an indication of the difference in light levels and uniformity of light spread. Now, let’s take a look at the significant differences between a regular flood light and a sports flood light.

Higher Lumen Output: A sports flood light is typically the higher end option as it delivers higher lumens, sometimes over 100,000 lumens. A higher lumen output allows sports flood lights to be mounted at larger distances and heights. These lights must perform well even when mounted 100 feet in the air, such as when mounted on a pole overlooking a football field. On the other hand, regular floods are designed to illuminate at a shorter distance out from the pole or mounting location and usually go up to about 60,000 lumens, making them ideal for mounting heights of 20 to 40 feet. For mounting heights greater than 40 feet, specialty sports floods provide a significantly higher lumen output.

Different Beam Patterns and Options: Sports flood lights offer more beam pattern options compared to regular floods as they need to have a variety of patterns and angles to fit their intended use. Narrow beams are required to project the light out a greater distance, such as 200 to 240 feet, while a 60-degree angle reaches 145 feet to 175 feet, and an 80-degree beam would be under 105 feet. A sports flood light is similar to a spotlight that projects light to a specific spot, while a regular flood light spreads the light out. The angle of the beam pattern is critical for sports floods as it helps avoid blinding players during a game.

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