Well not quite in my case, as I have restarted my football (soccer) career after a break of multiple decades. Four months in and lots of strains and aches but no serious injuries as yet, some of the old skills are showing signs of resurfacing. You see running in a straight line is very different from the multiple twists and turns required in the soccer game. It's probably taken me several years to get fit enough to enter the cage and play on the 3G surface.
Back in my day the artificial pitch was known as ‘Astroturf’ which actually was an intellectual property problem for the owner because it's essentially meant that they had genericised the term and would be unable to protect it using trademarks. However, their IP battles didn't stop just there and when competitor Fieldturf entered the fray with their 2004 patent for it’s synthetic grass system, the competitors challenged it demanding a patent re-examination. Several years later in 2010 this was reconfirmed by the US Patent Office as valid.
You see the beauty of playing on a fantastic 3G surface, especially when you're an old bloke, is that the ground is wonderfully soft yet not tiring to run on. It is comprised of a three-layer system with sand on the bottom, a mix of sand and rubber in the middle, and rubber on top. After a game and on taking off my shoes, my hallway becomes covered in small rubber ball bearing sized particles.
Fieldturf decided they had been done an injustice and in 2010 they sued Astroturf for patent infringement, only to be countersued for $500 million. Eventually in 2015 Astroturf were found guilty of infringing Fieldturf's patents, and the results of all these shenanigans meant that Astroturf filed for bankruptcy and Fieldturf went on from strength to strength.
The other side of playing on a 3G surface is that it's far less abrasive than the original artificial turf and this is because there's more contact with the soft artificial ground than with the synthetic grass, because one of Fieldturf's innovations is to space the ‘rows of grass’ further apart. This also means it lasts longer because it's easier to drain.
For now, at least I'm really enjoying my return to football and am hopeful that the skills will return, but more than anything that I remain uninjured and am able to play for weeks and months ahead.
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Author: John Pryor Exalt IP