air quality

Indoor Pool Air Quality is Superior!

We love sharing information that helps our swim families know that they have made the right choice in returning to swim lessons. While no place is 100% virus-free, information continues to be published showing that pools are one of the safest places to participate in any activity!

The following was taken from a blog post published by the United States Swim Schools Association.

“We’ve established that viruses such as COVID-19 are not shown to be transmitted in properly maintained pool water.[1] So let’s talk about the air surrounding the pool. After talking with industry experts, we’ve uncovered some interesting information on ways ventilation for indoor pools is far superior at minimizing virus transmission than most indoor spaces.

Keith Coursin is the President of Desert Aire. He has served on several ventilation committees including the CDC’s Model Aquatic Health Code Committee. He shared that mechanical engineers use the ANSI/ASHRAE Standard 62.1-2020 Ventilation for Acceptable Indoor Air Quality to determine how much ventilation air the dehumidification equipment must be designed for an indoor pool. When looking at the standard, indoor swimming pools are required to have a very high ventilation rate. It’s been designed this way to help remove byproducts of the chlorine used to maintain the pool water. Keith shared this comparison of the ventilation rate:

Indoor pool ventilation power is:

8 times higher than an office space

4 times higher than an elementary classroom

2.6 times higher than a science laboratory

Keith said, “in fact, there is no other building type listed in the standard that comes close to the required ventilation rate of an indoor pool.” So, what does all this mean? The air you find at an indoor pool is better ventilated than many other indoor spaces you will be in! : )

In the video below, the aquatics engineering experts at Counsilman Hunsaker share that for years, designers have been exploring ways to increase air turnover, minimize air velocity and introduce fresh air to handle the air requirements to maintain indoor pools. They confirm, as Keith stated, that the indoor pool area will have the highest air turn-over and most fresh air of any other space within that building. At Propel our turn-over rate is the same in our viewing rooms as it is in our pool area! Additionally, reducing air velocity is important in indoor pools to reduce evaporation, however it turns out that reducing air velocity also helps minimize the spread of airborne pathogens. Research has also shown that relative humidity between 40-60% is ideal to create a healthy indoor space and minimize the spread of airborne viruses.[2] Indoor pools are designed with HVAC systems to maintain proper humidity levels.”

All of the health protocols like self-monitoring for symptoms, wearing masks, and social distancing where possible are still an important way to help prevent the spread of viruses. That being said, it’s comforting to know that our indoor aquatic environment, by design, has the ability to minimize the spread of airborne viruses. It is also great to know that learning to swim can be a great lower-risk choice than many other activities. Your child will be learning a potentially life-saving skill while having fun and getting some much-needed exercise, making it a win-win all around! For more details on all of the ways that our facility is designed to keep swimmers safe and our facility clean go to our Facilities page. For information about our class options, Frequently Asked Questions and safety procedures, please visit our COVID-19 page.

Propel Swim Academy is dedicated to providing a safe, fun, and welcoming environment for all of our swim families. If you have any questions, concerns, or suggestions, please do not hesitate to contact us!

[1] https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/parks-rec/aquatic-venues.html

[2] https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/08/200820102503.htmhttps://www.sylvane.com/blog/higher-indoor-humidity-prevents-flu/

[1] https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/parks-rec/aquatic-venues.html

[2] https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/08/200820102503.htmhttps://www.sylvane.com/blog/higher-indoor-humidity-prevents-flu/

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