How to Green Your Pool
In recent years, at-home pools have gained popularity; they’ve become more affordable and accessible than ever before and have presented a direct solution for those looking for ways to naturally improve their fitness, rehab certain injuries or treat certain conditions (and, of course, to just have good ol’ fun with friends and family).
However, owning a pool of any kind isn’t always the best way to reduce an environmental footprint. How do you make the two work together? It all starts with understanding how to “green” your therapy pool.
Why Therapy Pools are Beneficial
Pools bring aquatic therapy to your backyard – or indoor space when possible. They provide a more natural, less medicated, option for rehabbing injuries, losing weight and improving conditioning. Based on the idea that the water creates resistance and buoyancy, individuals who undergo therapy in a pool, or conduct exercises in water are able to increase their mobility and strength without causing excess joint stress, pain or risk.
Therapy pools are especially relevant for those interested in green living. It’s a well-known fact that the medical industry isn’t exactly green. While advances have taken place that have helped move the medical world toward a more environmentally friendly existence, there are still over 80,000 chemicals used in creating medical supplies that have not been tested for environmental research. Bringing treatment home is an alternative for those concerned about this startling fact.
However, pools aren’t known for being green either. From the chemicals used for maintenance to the use of water and electricity, those interested in pursuing an at-home therapy pool may wonder about how to make it more environmentally friendly. Luckily, there are options. Follow the tips below to make your therapy pool – or standard swimming pool – more green.
Ways to Green Your Therapy Pool
1. Consider Saltwater
Saltwater requires fewer chemicals and a lower saturation of chlorine for maintenance and can be used almost interchangeably with fresh water in many pools. Furthermore, salt provides health and healing benefits for the body and is less costly in the long run. When exploring options, be sure to look into saltwater.
2. Use a Solar Cover
Water evaporation is a serious concern for pool owners, especially those in warmer climates. When water evaporates, it must be replaced. Using a solar cover not only warms the pool water by taking advantage of the sun, it also slows the evaporation of water. Less water use makes your pool more green, look for ways to conserve!
3. Consider Solar Heating Panels
For some individuals, cold water is not conducive to a successful therapy session. In this case, heating the water is a necessity. However, standard pool heating equipment uses an extensive amount of electricity that could be avoided. Instead, consider installing solar heating panels to heat your pool. While the cost up front may be high, in the long run, you’ll come out paying less and using less electricity.
4. Put Your Filter on a Timer
When the pool is not in use, it’s not necessary to use the filter at all times. Instead, consider the times of day that you’re most likely to use the pool and set the schedule accordingly. The less time the filter is running, the more green your pool will be. Aim for 6-8 hours of filter use per day to maintain a balance between a fully functioning pool and environmental friendliness.
5. Fill it Naturally
Even with a solar cover, some evaporation and/or water loss from use is eminent. Instead of relying on your public water source or well to do the refilling, watch the weather report. When rain is in the forecast, consider leaving the cover off to take advantage of a natural source of water.
Owning an aquatic therapy pool or standard swimming pool doesn’t have to have a negative impact on the environment; this is especially important to understand when the health benefits outweigh the negatives. Consider the options above for making pool ownership a more “green” endeavor for your family.