Baseball and Softball Air Dome Design Considerations
Looking to maximize the usability of your sports facility? Installing a baseball dome to cover your field can provide many benefits for both athletes and spectators alike.
When we think of sports domes, fall and winter sports come to mind.
Hockey, basketball, and even football are played under these protective structures. However, air domes are also great for baseball and softball indoor facilities. Whether it’s safeguarding against rain in the spring or wind in the fall or providing a secure space for practices and clinics, air domes can provide many benefits.
Of course, the main benefit of an air dome is obvious: it protects players and equipment from the elements. But the advantages of air domes go beyond just weather – especially when compared to more traditional and permanent structures.
Let’s look at why sports air domes are an excellent option for baseball and softball indoor facilities.
You can also try our sports dome cost calculator to get a customized cost estimate for your baseball or softball dome project.
Top Reasons to Choose Air Domes for Baseball and Softball
1 – Air domes can be installed quickly and easily
Unlike their permanent counterparts, air domes can be easily constructed and installed.
In days (or weeks for some larger domes), your facility can install an air dome and be ready to use. This is a significant advantage if you’re looking to get up and running quickly or if you want the flexibility to take the dome down when it’s not needed.
The efficiency air domes offer in terms of installation also reduces construction costs.
2 – Air domes are cost-effective
Permanent indoor facilities can be costly to build and maintain. Building a permanent structure requires a level of commitment that not everyone is ready for – especially if you’re just getting started with indoor baseball or softball.
Air domes are a more cost-effective option in both the short and long run. The initial investment is lower, and you’ll also save on ongoing maintenance costs.
3 – Air domes protect against all weather
We often imagine protecting competitors from rain or snow when we think about domes.
But air domes offer protection against more than just precipitation. They can also safeguard against high winds, dust, and debris – making them ideal for facilities in areas with severe weather conditions.
If your facility is in a hot climate, an air dome can make it more comfortable to practice and play. It provides shade and traps cooler air for your visitors. Keeping players and spectators shielded from the scorching sun is just as essential as protecting from the rain (we’re looking at you, Arizona).
These are just a few reasons why air domes make sense for baseball and softball indoor facilities.
There are plenty more – from the increased safety an air dome offers to the fact that they can be used for other activities beyond baseball and softball.
What to Consider When Designing an Indoor Baseball Dome
Now that we’ve convinced you that an air dome is the way to go for your indoor facility, it’s time to start shopping around.
Not all domes are created equal, and there are several factors you’ll want to consider before making a purchase. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
The size of your facility and the playing field will obviously determine the size of the dome. Before choosing your dome, you need to know the required width, length, and height. A quick way to get an estimate for the necessary size is:
Length x Width X Height
Knowing the level of competition your facility will host will help you determine the correct size.
Baseball and softball field sizes
|Competition level||Base path||Foul lines||Home run fence||Area (sq ft)|
Professional / College
Height of the baseball dome
It is essential to know the potential height of your baseball or softball dome because depending on where the construction site is located, there may be limits to how tall even temporary sports buildings, like air domes, can be built.
A good rule of thumb is that your sports dome’s height typically is around 30% of its width.
So if your baseball diamond’s width is for example 320 feet, then the height of the dome will be around 96 feet.
Design requirements for different competition levels
Understanding your facility’s use case before selecting a dome is imperative. Knowing who will be playing, watching, and attending will dictate many decisions about your dome and the amenities inside.
Professional & College
Will you be hosting college or professional-level competitions? The quality needs to match the level of play.
For top-tier events, you’ll need top-quality materials and amenities. That means lighting designed for TV and streaming broadcasts, a sound system that can be heard from every seat in the house, and a playing surface that meets professional or collegiate standards.
Remember, the size of your facility will also impact how many people can comfortably fit inside – so keep capacity in mind when making your decision.
For less intense levels of competition like grade school and high school, the requirements will be a bit different.
You’ll still need a quality playing surface and lighting, but the sound system may not need to be as robust. In addition, you won’t need as many seats to get away with a smaller dome. Typically at this level no more than 5,000 spectators attend games
Training & Recreational Play
If you don’t plan on hosting an organized competition, you may be able to get away with a smaller, more basic dome.
There is no need to reserve a lot of space for spectators, the lighting system only needs to ensure proper visibility for players, and a sound system is not mandatory. It goes without saying that the playing surface still needs to be of good quality.
Of course, if you’re hoping to attract attention from local businesses or schools, it’s worth considering a more high-end option.
After all, first impressions matter.
Do you also need to cover your batting cages?
In case your baseball or softball facility hosts batting cages for training purposes you should consider it when designing the baseball dome. A baseball bubble offers perfect conditions all year round for practicing the perfect swing.
Obviously covering the batting cages increases the total area to be covered, so remember to take it into account when measuring the overall dimensions of your sports facility.
An average batting cage measures 70 feet long by 14 feet wide and 12 feet high. The total area needed to be covered for a sports facility that hosts multiple batting cages is listed below:
- 1 batting cage = 980 square feet
- 4 batting cages = 3,920 square feet
- 8 batting cages = 7,840 square feet
What Amenities are Needed for Your Customers?
The amenities you include will be largely determined by the events you plan to host. It is important to consider all the necessary amenities early in the planning phase to make sure that there is enough space under the dome.
Some standard amenities for air domes include:
- Locker Rooms
- First Aid Room
Working with an experienced planner can help you determine which amenities are necessary for your facility.
Customization of the Baseball or Softball Dome
One of the benefits of working with a baseball or softball dome manufacturer is the ability to customize your facility to meet your specific needs.
You can choose your air dome’s size, shape, and color and add features like windows, doors, and insulation.
Printing your logo (or your sponsor’s logo) on the outside, and customizing the color of your dome’s membrane to match your branding, are also popular options for many businesses. Your dome is a branding opportunity that should not be overlooked.
Are Baseball and Softball Domes Profitable?
One of the key benefits of installing a baseball dome at your facility is driving more revenue.
More games and fewer rainouts or postponed dates can mean more people through the door – and more money in your pocket.
In addition, higher-quality amenities will attract a broader range of users, from professional and collegiate athletes to local businesses looking for a place to host their corporate events.
The increased foot traffic can also lead to new sponsorship opportunities and the chance to partner with other businesses in your community.
Compared to permanent sports structures, air domes are much cheaper and faster to install. You can expect a return on investment within five years (depending on the geographical location and business plan).
Making Money Beyond Games
There are ways to monetize your air dome without hosting collegiate or professional-level sports.
You can rent your facility to members of your local community, sports clubs, or even schools from outside your area.
A well-designed modern air dome facility can become the go-to location for a variety of special events:
- Car Shows
- Trade Fairs
- Cultural Festivals
- Home & Garden Events
The options are virtually endless.
What’s more, an air dome can generate revenue all year round – not just during the traditional sports season. With the proper management and marketing, your air dome can become a profitable addition to your business.
The Real Benefit of an Air Dome for Your Sports Factility
Choosing an air dome for your baseball or softball field provides many advantages over a traditional sports facility. Although it’s the perfect way to provide a fantastic playing experience year-round, it’s an opportunity to generate revenue for your business.
Customizable and available in various sizes, an air dome can be adapted to meet the specific needs of your business.
When it comes to making money with an air dome, the sky’s the limit.If you’re looking for a way to take your baseball or softball facility to the next level – we can help!
Use our sports dome cost calculator to generate a customized estimate for your project. We can also put you in touch with expert partners who will help you with every step – from design to installation.