Urania Milano basketball team in Italy has become a Pure Air Zone. The professional basketball outfit, which plays in the Green Circle of Serie A2 have taken to the pure air project to enhance the health of players and staff alike. Installing AIRcel commercial air purifiers and wearing customised U-Masks, they were more than happy to sit and talk about their Pure Air Zone experience so far.
How important is air quality in sport?
Air quality in sport is extremely important. It can affect breathing, cause long term health problems, affect decision making and lead to poor focus amongst players and referees. This isn’t limited to outdoor sports either; indoor air quality is often 2-5x worse!
Pollution can be so bad that the likes of South Korea even have protocols that cancel matches when fine dust levels reach more than 300 micrograms per cubic meter (㎍/㎥). The country also has an advisory notice in place for when dust levels exceed 150 micrograms. Various studies into air pollution have also shown that poor air quality in sport can cause problems in football, baseball and chess, to name just a few.
How to improve air quality in sport?
There are a number of ways that air quality in sport can be improved but some ideas are easier to implement than others:
Install commercial air purifiers like the Pure Air Zone;
Initiate a public transport solution so that fewer spectators drive to matches;
Ban tailgate parties before and after matches;
Schedule matches at times in the day when air quality is better;
Legislate for mask use throughout a sporting event.
Of course, legislating mask use doesn’t solve an air quality problem but will at least protect mask wearers from breathing in poor quality air. Likewise, banning tailgate parties may improve air quality but lessen the ‘experience’ of a sporting event as a cultural event.
Why is Urania Milano dedicated to improving air quality in sport?
Like many sporting organisation, Urania Milano was not immune to the pandemic. As soon as sport resumed, they looked for ways to improve the air quality in their surroundings.
As Andrea Agazzini, Marketing Director of the team explains, the whole idea actually goes beyond merely being able to breathe improved air but acts as a lesson for future generations.
“We try to explain to our children what wearing the wildcat logo on our chest really means,” he says, “Among other values there is also a certain perception of everyday life and the air that we breathe, so we try to insist on healthy habits.”
What do the players at Urania Milano think of the Pure Air Zone?
Paolo Paci is captain of Urania Milano and is more than happy to talk about the Pure Air Zone project.
“I think breathing pure air helps everyone. It helps players but also people that experience the outdoors or working in offices on a daily basi.”
He too spoke of the importance of influencing children at an early age and teaching them to respect the environment. “I pay a lot of attention to helping to protect the planet and bringing these values to the younger generation,” he said.
What next for Urania Milano and improving air quality in sport?
“The next step that we want to take with U-Earth is kitting out the arena with larger air purifiers that can cover the whole area and designate the whole championship as a Pure Air Zone,” explains Andrea.
“The first step will be to involve all the other basketball teams around Italy.”
These are ambitious plans to improve health in sport but U-Earth is committed to helping teams and organisations achieve their targets. If you would like to learn more about the Pure Air Zone project, please contact one of our air quality specialists today.