The History Of Swimming Pools

by Pool Builders on 06-19-2011 in Articles

Throughout history, swimming pools have provided people with opportunities for water-based enjoyment. They vary in size and shape, physical placement and materials. Some models are above-ground, others are built into the ground, and some are designed for roof-tops. They are constructed from a variety of materials, including concrete, fiberglass, metal and plastic. The largest are known as Olympic-sized.

While some are intended to be used by the general public, and others are for private use. Health clubs, fitness centers and hotels often provide them for exercise and relaxation. Hot tubs and Jacuzzi are smaller versions, which utilize hot water for relaxation and therapy.

In order to protect the health of swimmers, water disinfection is required. Filters, and ingredients such as chlorine, mineral sanitizer and bromine are often used. Some chemical-free units utilize carbon bio-filters and ultraviolet sterilization. These measures inhibit the growth of bacteria, algae, viruses and insect larvae.

Private facilities are smaller than public venues. In private homes, some units are constructed for above-ground, seasonal use. These can be disassembled for the winter months. In the 1950s, many warm regions of the United States saw an increase in the number of outdoor, built-in units. In cooler climates, heated, indoor facilities are often designed for year-round use.

Leisure centers and recreational complexes often provide public lagoons. They often have heated, indoor units as well as outdoor ones. Shallow children's areas are popular for families with young children. They are often rectangular in shape, with diving boards at the deeper ends. Some facilities feature waterfalls, island bars and wave machines. When located in separate buildings, they are referred to as natatorium.

Facilities designed for competition must comply with international standards. These must be either 82 or 164 feet in length, with depths of at lease 4.4 feet. Olympic-sized units were first used during the global competition in 1924. These must be 160 feet in length, 82 feet wide. Their designs include eight lanes, each with a width of 8.2 feet, with two additional side-lanes. The water depth needs to be at least 6.6 feet, with temperatures between 77 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit.

In the early 1900s, ocean facilities were built on headlands, especially in Australia. Parts of the rock shelves were enclosed, and water was circulated by tidal tanks or flooding at high-tide. Swimmers at these facilities were protected from rough surf and sharks.

Swimming pools have a long and interesting history. With the variety of models, materials and locations, they can be enjoyed by people around the globe, year-round.

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