By: Robin Fellman, FMWR
Used with permission Fort Greely Interceptor
There has always been much controversy concerning the temperature of swimming pool water.
For the competitor or lap swimmer, who desires cool crisp refreshing water, temperatures from 77 to 82 degrees is considered just right. Having the water too warm for these swimmers can be dangerous and cause overheating.
For the individual with arthritis or other physical issues, 84 to 88 degrees would be most beneficial, to support the ability to have full range of motion. Warmer water is less dense and therefore creates less friction.
When teaching infants or small is the best depending on the age. Younger children are unable to retain their body heat like adults. Hypothermia is a real threat for young children, even in a heated pool. Parents can help prevent this heat loss by having your young child wear a T-shirt or long sleeved “rash guard”. The swim instructor can also shorten the class time for younger children.
Although there is a spa temperature limit of 104 degrees, there is no regulation setting pool temperature. Pleasing everyone in a multipurpose commercial pool is most difficult. The Aquatic Exercise Association, American Red Cross, United States Swimming Association, and United States Water Fitness Association have swimming pool water is best when kept between 82 to 84 degrees.
Setting all personal preference aside, this does not even address the substantial cost increase to raising the pool water temperature just one degree. The U.S. Department of Energy states that for every one degree you raise your pool’s temperature, energy consumption goes up 10-30% (depending on where you live).
The current temperature for the Ft. Greely Pool is 82/83 degrees, which falls within the field professionals suggested range for a multipurpose commercial pool. So please, come on in…the water truly is fine!