Nation gripped by sports hall acoustics
Improving acoustic conditions in sports halls is an aim for many teachers and pupils. As we speak, Dutch television channels and news websites are paying a lot of attention to the topic. Click here for the video (in dutch language, scroll to 07:15 min.)
Already back in 2008 Dutch teachers sued their employers and got financially compensated for hearing damage. Insufficient acoustic conditions are a well-known topic but unfortunately still many schools and communities do not comply with the standards. Solutions are available however...
To create attention for the challenge, one of the schools in Holland, has introduced hearing protection during physical education.
Successful solutions to improve the situation for teachers and pupils, range from upgrading the room acoustic comfort to providing instructions to teachers and pupils on how to behave. Studying the reverse Lombard effect, shows that improved acoustic conditions have a positive effect on behaviour of students (being more silent) and helps to further decrease the sound pressure levels. Other acoustic qualities such as spatial decay, reverbererance and clarity should also be looked at.
Due to the risk of damage, the acoustic ceiling and wall absorbers need an impact resistant surface layer. Products that have had a proven effect are:
More information on well proven solutions and inspiration can be found here.