What Are the Types of Outdoor Basketball Court Surfaces?

Do you know there are 4 different types of options available for outdoor basketball court surfaces?

The surface is what most people think about when they first imagine a home basketball court and can also be considered the “material” from which the court is being built. 

And in this post, I will help you to learn more about each type so that you can make a well-informed decision for your own outdoor basketball court surface.

Outdoor Basketball Court Surfaces

Concrete Basketball Court Surface

Concrete is the most basic outdoor basketball court surface. In most cases, homeowners opt-in for concrete because it’s the most convenient.

Just pour the mix, level the surface, let it dry, and play ball.

However, there are some disadvantages to concrete basketball surfaces. The major one is that it could crack and peel under harsh conditions (high and low temperatures).

So don’t expect it to last more than a decade.

The ball bounce is solid, but it does make a lot of noise compared to other outdoor basketball court surfaces on this list.

Concrete Outdoor Basketball Court Surface
Concrete Basketball Court


  • A concrete outdoor court is relatively inexpensive to build
  • This surface is quite durable under good conditions
  • Concrete basketball courts are easy to maintain and clean
  • You have all the design flexibility when constructing


  • The concrete surface is slippery (risk of injury)
  • Susceptible to moisture, cracks, and peels

Asphalt Basketball Court Surface

Asphalt or blacktop is one of the most popular basketball court surfaces, hands down.

The asphalt tarmacadam is a mixture made of stone and tar mix. It needs a stone subfloor. You have to pour it and then level it.

The interesting point is that this surface is customizable in terms of colours and lining when dry. Asphalt tarmacadam also offers phenomenal slip resistance when wet.

You can expect great ball bounce and sound reduction. However, when you fall on it, be ready to wince in pain. The surface easily lasts for an average of 15 years.

Note: Asphalt surface is usually laid over concrete or gravel base.

Asphalt Outdoor Basketball Court Surface
Asphalt Basketball Court


  • Asphalt court flooring is perfect as an outdoor basketball court surface
  • The standard asphalt surface is strong and elastic enough
  • The installation cost of an asphalt court is cost-effective
  • Basketball bounces fast and higher on the asphalt surfacing
  • This kind of floor can endure all kinds of harsh and normal weather easily


  • Asphalt surfacing is prone to chipping and cracking 
  • Falling on this asphalt hurts the most!

EPDM Basketball Court Surface

EPDM or polymeric rubber surface is a fan favourite for outdoor basketball courts.

It is made from high-grade polymeric rubber obtained from granules of EPDM rubber bonded with (PU) Polyurethane. The surface is pretty soft as compared to asphalt tarmacadam.

And the bounce and performance are uncompromised.

The biggest advantage of using EPDM is its customizable bounce. This can be altered through shock pads beneath the polymeric top surface. It helps in prevention of the injuries as well.

Note: EPDM surface is usually laid over concrete.

Rubber Outdoor Basketball Court Surface
Rubber Basketball Court


  • Rubber surfacing has high durability (could last for decades!)
  • The material can sustain extreme weather conditions
  • Synthetic court flooring is a low-maintenance solution
  • Synthetic court flooring provides top gameplay and excellent ball response 
  • The surfacing has a high coefficient of friction, reducing the impact of severe falls


  • Rubber outdoor basketball surfacing is quite expensive
  • The upper layers could fade with time

Sports Snapping Tiles

Basketball court tiles are nowadays very popular. You can personalize them according to your space, and choice, as well as can utilize a variety of colours on them.

Yes, you can snap these tiles and create a grid.

They are easy to install, softer, and prevent injury, and the performance is also not too bad. Moreover, tiles are durable, relatively cheap, and easy to clean.

Note: Sports tiles are laid over the concrete surface.

Sports Tiles Court
Sports Tiles Court


  • Basketball court tiles are very easy to clean.
  • It will stand up to any harsh weather conditions and high amounts of foot traffic. 
  • It stays up to 50% cooler than concrete 
  • Asphalt surfaces produce consistency and provide superior grip for maximum playability.


  • Water or sweat can easily go inside the tiles.
  • The floor may not appear completely seamless.

Multi-Purpose Basketball Court Surfaces

Normally, this outdoor basketball court surface is made from multi-purpose plastic. According to the top surface area, the floor covering kind modifications like:

Acrylic Court Flooring

If you see any kind of flooring in an institution, the typical kind of flooring will be acrylic court flooring. The application of acrylic is very simple and low-cost. Polymer court floor covering is durable in all climates. Additionally, it is non-slippery, elastic, as well as low-cost upkeep.

Multi-Purpose Basketball Court Surfaces
Multi-Purpose Basketball Court

Tartan Court Floor

This kind of flooring is elastic, absorptive, resilient, and non-slippery, as well as can be painted in different colours. Tartan floor covering is really long-lasting yet really tough to use and also a little pricey. Tartan flooring is basically UV immune, so it is really convenient to utilize as an exterior court floor covering. Note that tartan flooring is not able to do any kind of contortion, and this is a spongy type of flooring.

Polyurethane Court Floor

The polyurethane court is the primary kind of multi-purpose flooring. This court flooring is really a plastic application based upon a solid structure. This flooring is non-slippery, sturdy, flexible, as well as likewise immune to abrasion. It has the choice of different colours as well. Polyurethane is likewise excellent for landscaping.

What Is the Best Surface Material for an Outdoor Basketball Court?

The opinions differ from person to person when it comes to the best surface material for an outdoor basketball court.

Some people might say that rubber should be everyone’s first choice. But then again, those words are coming from companies selling them.

I don’t disagree, however. Rubber (EPDM) surface offers a great basketball experience!

Best Outdoor Basketball Court Surface
EPDM Rubber Surface is the Best!

On the other hand, asphalt is a cost-friendly and durable option too. It offers great gameplay as well, and it is nice on the eye.

Snapping tiles for basketball courts are getting popular these days as well. But I wouldn’t call it the best surface material for your backyard basketball court…

So what’s my favourite?

I would recommend asphalt or EPDM rubber surface. Both provide top-of-the-line gameplay. Asphalt is cheaper but could lead to injuries. Rubber is soft and safe but expensive.

At the end of the day, you can’t go wrong with any of the outdoor basketball court surfaces.

What Are Outdoor Basketball Court Surfaces Prices?

A concrete slab will cost you between $4 and $7 per square foot. The price is quite high compared to the quality of this outdoor basketball court surface.

If you want a classic look and are looking to save a few bucks, then go for asphalt tarmacadam. Asphalt cost around $3 to $4 per square foot!

But if you are frightened of breaking a bone after a fall on asphalt, then the next best option is EPDM polymeric rubber. It will cost around $4 to $6.50 per square foot.

Snapping tiles are also a cost-effective surface. It will cost you between $4 and $7 per square foot to set them up on your outdoor basketball court.

If you still haven’t bought an outdoor basketball hoop, check out my list of best hoops!

Final Words

Your court’s surface will depend mostly on the requirements of the particular court and its area, with differing products needed for outside play. And of course, your budget.

Bear in mind that a perfect outdoor basketball court surface has high durability, slide resistance, as well as shock absorption.

Most notably, the surface needs to withstand high-intensity activities, helping you to provide peak performance while providing security.

And do not forget to clean your court consistently.

For everyday cleansing, mopping and brushing up are appropriate to rid of loose dirt, dust, and grit. To clean sweat as well as spilt water dry use microfiber fabric.

And that’s it. Now you know what different types of outdoor basketball court surfaces are out there. You know which one is the best and how much each type costs.

All that is left to do is to wish you a great game!

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