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Clean Water “Feels” Different

As I’ve written in another blog, pool surfaces and components are created to be smooth and easy on the touch. Swimmers should never feel rough patches on the surface or abrasive edges on rails or ladders. And something is definitely not right when a swimmer feels dry, rough or itchy skin, or has red and burning eyes.

Touch also works on an entirely different level; one that I personally suspect might be at least part or maybe even entirely psychological. In my experience, with the “gourmet” way I treat pools, many clients and pool users have reported that they love the way the water feels, that there’s a perceptible quality to the texture that enhances their enjoyment.

Although I love hearing those remarks because it means they’re having a positive experience, I don’t honestly know if different treatment methods create different types of “feels” to the water.

I do suspect that when water is clean, properly sanitized and balanced, when it’s odorless and tasteless, when it’s a comfortable temperature and especially when it looks beautiful, there are no distractions to the enjoyment. I liken it to the way a freshly cleaned car seems to run better. We know rationally that the car doesn’t run differently because it’s been cleaned, but when it’s looking spiffy and smelling fresh we often get the feeling the ride is a little smoother as well.

Is that naiveté or simply the nature of sensory experience? Our mind processes the information we receive through our senses and forms an impression of the experience we’re currently experiencing. Does water that’s treated perfectly actually feel different? Frankly, I’m not sure it really matters. What does matter is that the people who turn to the water for health and recreation walk away feeling refreshed, relaxed and rejuvenated.

the Water Geek


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A blog about all things water, written by SRK's founder Steve Kenny.