• Time to Rethink How Pool Operators Protect Swimmers?

    by Michael Popke June 2012

    The pool of excuses for not knowing how to swim shrinks every year. Last month, the third annual World's Largest Swimming Lesson™, held at more than 100 aquatic facilities across the United States, attempted to teach an estimated 20,000 people to swim — for free.

  • 10-Year Campaign Announced to Bolster Aquatics Industry

    by Michael Popke — AB Managing Editor May 2012

    Simply teaching more people how to swim will result in reduced drowning rates, a decline in healthcare costs, and improved health and quality of life, according to the National Swimming Pool Foundation®, which Thursday launched the Step Into Swim™ campaign. The 10-year effort will initially partner with nine organizations that teach minority populations to swim. Increasing the numbers of swimmers will also build demand for public pools, spurring growth for the aquatics industry, according to NSPF CEO Tom Lachocki.

  • Variable Frequency Drives Help Pools Maximize Energy Efficiency

    by Emily Attwood April 2012

    After the wave of aquatic regulation changes that have taken effect over the last few months, commercial pool owners are likely looking forward to summer — their busiest time of year — as a chance to catch their collective breath.

  • ADA Deadline Nears for Compliance by Aquatic Facilities

    by Michael Popke — AB Managing Editor March 2012

    Late next week, new provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act regarding public pools and spas become law. Simply put, all public pools must be equipped with means of handicapped-accessible entry by Thursday, March 15, or face fines levied by the U.S. Department of Justice or lawsuits filed by individuals or advocacy groups.

  • Prep Swimmer Loses ADA Lawsuit

    by John Wolohan February 2012

    In an effort to break down some, if not all, of the barriers facing students with disabilities, the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 require that schools make accommodations for students with disabilities that do not fundamentally change the nature of the activity. The question of what constitutes a reasonable accommodation, therefore, is usually vital to most ADA and Rehabilitation Act cases.

  • Underwater Chaise Lounge a Draw at Texas Tech

    by Andrew Cohen February 2012

    To the underwater bench and conversation pit, you can add the underwater chaise lounge as a method of encouraging socializing in college leisure pools.

  • How to Make the Most of Limited Pool Deck Space

    by Michael Popke January 2012

    As both a professional pool designer and the parent of two competitive swimmers, Matt Freeby attends several swim meets every year and keeps a mental list of competition venues he prefers to avoid.

  • Aquatic Center Pool Will Become Pumpkin Patch Tonight

    by Michael Popke — AB Managing Editor October 2011

    The pool at the South Jordan (Utah) Fitness & Aquatic Center will be transformed into a pumpkin patch during the facility's first "Halloween Pumpkin Plunge" tonight. During regularly scheduled open-swim hours between 6 and 9 p.m., the pool will be dyed a "spooky purple," according to promotional materials for the event, and participants will be able to wade into the water and pick out real floating pumpkins. Halloween music, treats and games also will be part of the event.

  • Pool Operators Still Confused by Latest ADA Standards

    by Emily Attwood October 2011

    When the Department of Justice enacted the ADA 2010 Standards for Accessible Design, one of the major differences from the previous version was the inclusion of regulations for swimming pools and spas.

  • 2011 Facility of Merit Winner: Smith Aquatic & Fitness Center, Buford Middle School

    by Andrew Cohen October 2011

    Situated on the Charlottesville, Va., campus of Buford Middle School as part of a recreation complex that includes an adjacent Boys & Girls Club, the LEED Platinum Smith Aquatic Center won praise for a simple rectangular plan enhanced by judicious selection of materials - to cite one notable example, blue-colored glass tile and raised aluminum signage on the two-story east wall of the natatorium. The center "does all the right things," said one judge. "It's simple, monolithic in form but softened with the right materials and detail."