Olympic History – 10 Things the Olympic Games Have Made Popular: Synthetic Track Surfaces
However, the 1956 Summer Olympics in Sydney featured an artificial warm up track and by the 1960s, these artificial surfaces had become the norm.
Companies like 3M (MMM) have created product lines around synthetic track surfaces (in 3M’s case, that would be Tartan APS), while tire manufacturers have found a good use for recycling their worn products — in the form of tire crumbs.
Today, the synthetic track surfaces first popularized by the Olympics are standard issue at high schools, colleges and many horse racetracks. They also provide the safety cushioning being used in many playgrounds.