All You Need to Know About Versatile Swim Spas

by Pool Builders on 06-26-2011 in Articles

An average-size swimming pool offers enough space for a mid-sized family for both play as well as workout options. Home owners who are lap swimmers can opt for longer pools. However property owners who don't possess either the budget or the requisite space for a full-sized pool now have the alternative of doing water-based exercises and swimming laps in swim spas. These smaller units let users work out in their backyards or in the privacy of their homes.

Swim spa models and features

Swim spas are designed to generate a current through a jet propulsion, propeller or paddle-wheel system. A serious 'exercise' swimmer will look for a smooth, deep. wide current and should ask for a 'wet test' at the spa dealer before deciding to buy a model.

Swimming spas are available in many depths, sizes and prices from economy size to deluxe units. Large spas are often used as mini pools with the current turned off - perfect for families with kids. You can add aquatic exercise aids like rowing and resistance equipment, dumbbells, buoyancy belts, as well as underwater bikes, elliptical machines and treadmills. Luxury models may come with MP3 player docks and sound systems built in so users can exercise listening to their favorite workout songs.

The hot tub-swim spa combination

Most of the swim spas provide seats with jets around them opposite to the current end, thus combining the features with a hot tub. Compact units offer fewer jets and bench type seating, while higher end models come with more jets and molded seating. Luxury models typically provide temperature control in the hot tub jetted seating area.

Versatility in swim spa placement

A swim spa is versatile as it can be installed almost anywhere: either outdoors or indoors, above-ground, in-ground or even partially recessed. If you are looking to turn your spa into an outdoor living space, you can construct a deck surrounding it, though do keep the spa covered while not in use to safeguard against accidents, debris falling in and high electricity bills through heat loss.

Alternatively, you may prefer to set up your new spa indoors due to inclement weather or for privacy. In this case, do get a structural assessment done to ensure that your property's foundation can support the additional weight filled with not just water but with its users. Also remember to consult an HVAC expert for input on proper ventilation solutions to prevent mold growth and damage caused by high humidity levels in the pool area in the future.

Retrofitting a swim spa in your pool

Home owners who already own pools have the option of turning them into swim spas by retrofitting them with swim-current generators. Also known as stationary swim machines, they use either a jet or propeller and can be fitted onto the deck of nearly every existing pool, the only caveat being that the pool depth should be a minimum of three feet at the area where it is mounted. This system is portable - it can be removed and installed in another pool in the event that you relocate. Built-in systems too are available, but these must be fitted either during major pool renovation or during the pool construction phase.

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