Q: How can I be sure that a new pitch will be in accordance with FIH specifications? What can I do if it isn’t?
A: For the pitch contract, firstly specify compliance with the FIH Handbook of Performance Requirements for Synthetic Turf Hockey Pitches. This document is available in the Pitches and Equipment section of this website.
Secondly, specify that the completed pitch must be independently tested to verify compliance with the field tests specified in that document.
Thirdly, specify conformance with the FIH Guide to the Artificial Lighting of Hockey Pitches which is also available in the Pitches and Equipment section of this website.
Both handbooks contain performance standards thus allowing manufacturers some latitude in how the objectives are achieved.
As a further precaution, specify proper testing of the sub-base as required by the pitch carpet installer and acceptance of these tests and the finished sub-base by the pitch carpet installer.
If the specification contains these clauses, the applicable standards can be enforced on the contractor.
Q: Does FIH have a recommendation for a contract for the construction of a synthetic surface hockey pitch?
A: A draft model contract is currently being compiled by the FIH Equipment Committee.
As soon as this has been finalised it will be posted on the website.
Q: If I accept a tender for a pitch after specifying an FIH approved product, will this produce a pitch that will be approved by FIH?
A: Not necessarily. Use of FIH approved turf products does not automatically give an FIH approved pitch because the performance of the pitch depends on lots of other factors especially the construction standards.
A separate set of field tests on the installed pitch must be undertaken by an FIH Accredited Laboratory and be sent to FIH for approval. If complying, FIH will issue a pitch specific Certificate of Compliance which will include Pitch Irrigation for unfilled pitches and Pitch Lighting, if installed.