Category Archives: Design

Portable Lifts Grandfathered For Pool ADA

New Rules outlined by the DOJ this week allows for portable lifts purchased before March 15, 2012 to be acceptable if kept in place.  According to an article published by Aquatics International today, DOJ will not be enforcing the fixed lift requirement for those operators who purchased a portable lift before March 15, 2012.    The DOJ went on to clarify that for municipal facilities (Type 2) that every pool does not have to be accessible.

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Immersion In Shoulder Deep Water Results In Cardiovascular And Respiratory Exercise Similar To A Gym Workout.

Hydrostatic pressure from immersion in water forces more blood to the central organs, increasing cardiac stroke volume and cardiac output, which is a similar effect caused by exercise. In addition, immersion also impacts liver and hormone production (endocrine system) and respirator exercise to breathe against the pressure imparted by the water. As with any exercise, increasing activity provides additional benefits. Yet with aging and growing sedentary populations who are less prone to exercise, immersion or light  activity in the water are ideal to gain heart, respiratory, and relaxation benefits with minimal risk of injury. (Comprehensive Aquatic Therapy, Ch. 2. Biophysiological Aspects of Hydrotherapy, WSU Publishing, 2011).

The above data was shared at the Learn-To-Swim Innovator Meeting in Colorado Springs Colorado on April 25, 2012. This meeting was sponsored by the National Swimming Pool Foundation.



Almost Half Of Americans Are Afraid Of The Deep End Of A Pool.

Two-thirds of Americans are afraid of deep water in lakes, rivers, and oceans

A study performed by Gallup (n-815) and presented at the 2008 World Aquatic Health Conference (Melon Dash) indicates that 64% of Americans are afraid in the deep, open water (lakes, rivers, oceans, etc.)  Forty-six percent are afraid in deep water in pools.  Even 39% are afraid to put their heads under water.  It seems reasonable to surmise that if an individual is afraid of a specific environment, it is less likely that the individual would advocate participating in activities in that environment.  If that individual has influence of family purchasing decisions, it is reasonable to conclude that over half of American households may oppose the idea of engaging in aquatic activities.

People don’t think about “strokes” when they think they are going to die

Overcoming change is a substantial barrier for most people.  Overcoming fear is even a greater obstacle.  Gallup research suggests that almost half of American adults fear deep water.  Most learn-to-swim programs focus on children and development of the ability to perform a variety of swim strokes.  The marketing of learn-to-swim programs may not connect to this large market segment.  As a result, in it important to explore and support programs that are tailored to the fearful adult.

The above data was shared at the Learn-To-Swim Innovator Meeting in Colorado Springs Colorado on April 25, 2012.  This meeting was sponsored by the National Swimming Pool Foundation


Is Common Sense Drowning?

In the past few years the swimming pool industry has experienced an aggressive use of mandates of swimming pool codes without the inclusive interests of all stakeholders in the aquatic industry. The Virginia Graeme Baker Act cost the swimming pool industry hundreds of millions of dollars and there are new challenges that the current language does not go far enough. The Dept. of Justice has reinterpreted the ADA code for portable lifts “no longer applicable” for their intent. The Model of Aquatic Health Code public process is getting significant feedback from industry manufactures that may have their own agenda in mind and not benefiting from the collective wisdom of all stakeholders (owner/operators, designers, users, health code officials). These examples bring to question are we able to apply best practices to raise the standard of care and experience for aquatic patrons in the United States or will this effort be hijacked to promote narrowly focused agendas?

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Designing The Perfect Waterpark

Waterpark Success:  Designing the Perfect Waterpark

With today’s economy, everyone wants to build a waterpark and make lots of money.  The problem is, just because you build it doesn’t mean it’s going to make money.  Most people have no idea what it costs to construct a successful waterpark, let alone what it costs to operate.  They come up with some grand scheme based on their personal preferences and think that everyone is going to enjoy it.

Without taking the proper steps to plan your park, there is no guarantee that it will be successful.  The first question you have to ask yourself is what does success mean at your waterpark?  Then you need to make sure you have the proper amenity blend to be successful in your market.

After you have an idea of how big the park will be and what it may include, you have to get realistic cost estimates.  When you look at construction cost, you can’t just find out the cost of a ride.  Who’s going to put it in?  How are people going to get their?  Where are they going to park?  What are they going to do when they’re not in line?  Getting the right answer to each of these questions will help ensure success at the waterpark.

Click here to read the entire article, which appeared in The World Water Park Annual Developer Guide 2011.