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Pool Your Senses – Your 5 Senses Can Detect Water Quality Issues Accurately

Humans are the ultimate water sensors. We may not be able to precisely measure pH, oxidation reduction potential (ORP), or calcium hardness without testing technology, but when it comes to overall water quality, there is no better measure than the subjective sensory data we otherwise know as experience.

The key to tapping into our remarkable sensing device science called the central nervous system can be summed up in one concept: awareness, or mindfulness as some call it.

Our senses are our first line of defense, and that includes the sixth sense, our intuition that tells us something just isn’t right. The senses are also how we perceive a positive experience. When you’re tuned into your surrounding environment, it’s amazing how perceptive one can be. Often, we simply know when something is right or we hear alarm bells when we perceive trouble.

We are also creatures of habit with a vast capacity to accept our surroundings, even when things are harmful. When we ignore the information our senses are gathering, it’s possible to endure remarkably negative situations and even put ourselves at risk. By the same token, we can easily skip by those things that add comfort, beauty, and wellness to our lives.

The bottom line is, each of us has the ability to make a choice whether or not to be aware. How we perceive water quality is a perfect example.

Perceiving Trouble

First, let’s look on the negative side of the equation.

I’m sometimes amazed at the water conditions people will tolerate. We’ve all seen people swimming in a pool or worse, bathing in a spa where the water is cloudy or discolored, smells bad, and has foam and gunk building up on the waterline. There might be bugs floating in it along with who knows what else. It’s disgusting; yet, they are luxuriating in water that is at best unpleasant and at worst unsafe.

These bathers are obviously unaware of the conditions that are literally touching their entire bodies. Perhaps they have faith that all recreational bodies of water are safely maintained or they’ve never been informed about the risk of infections that can exist in unwholesome water.

For whatever reason, time and time again, people demonstrate the capacity to ignore water quality.

This is true even to the point that some people who are in the process of experiencing symptoms, such as trouble breathing, will continue to immerse their bodies in the troubled waters that are causing the problem. I’ve been in indoor pools where the air is so bad that kids have to use inhalers to get through their work out or swimming lessons.

The answer is simple: when you’re in water and experience discomfort, be it itchy skin, eye irritations, unpleasant odors or trouble breathing, it’s time to get out of the water. If it’s in a public setting, make sure to let someone at the facility, be it a lifeguard or a manager, know that things are not right. If it’s in your pool or spa at home, it’s time to talk to your service technician or seek professional guidance if you take care of the water yourself.

I think people are sometimes reluctant to complain for any number of possible reasons, but when it comes to your own physical well-being and that of your family, that’s when you need to let someone know what you’re experiencing.

To do that, first you have to be aware, and at the most basic level, that simply means paying attention to what your senses are telling you. Whether at home or in a public setting, we should all expect quality water conditions. When the conditions don’t live up to that expectation, it’s time to do something different.

A Better Way

That is all part of why we created the SRK HydroZone 3® water treatment system. As I’ve written before, my own family has been stung by bad water in the past in the form of some fairly serious respiratory symptoms.

When I became aware of what was going on, I came to the conclusion we all need to think differently about water quality management. That revelation prompted my own professional and personal journey, which ultimately led to the way SRK treats water in the pools we build and maintain.

The solution is all encompassing. It involves the use of ozone, UV, and chlorine to chemically treat water. It also means efficient hydraulics and chemical distribution throughout the pool, as well as robust filtration, rigorous service regimens, and the use of automated control and monitoring.

When the entire system is developed with water quality in mind, it’s amazing what happens. Our senses go from telling us something is terribly wrong to a state of bliss and tranquility that can only happen in well-maintained water. When you swim or simply relax in our HydroZone 3 water, the entire experience is transformed. And, this is where the other side of sensory awareness kicks in.

Just as our senses will tell us when something isn’t right, when we pay close attention, we can intuitively feel when we’re in a healthy environment. I’ve seen it time and time again, in my own life, in my kids’ response to the aquatic experience, and in the way our customers respond to the water we provide.

Yes, it may be almost entirely subjective, but the way our water makes people feel is tangible and very, very real. What I’m talking about is that next-level experience; of wellness where your entire body becomes aware of the nuance of texture and appearance.

The water demands you to be present. It gets your attention and quiets your thoughts. It’s both subtle and profound at the same time. The people who have become indoctrinated to our approach to water quality management become passionate advocates for it. Some have even said they feel it’s a necessary part of self-care, and they do not want to live without it.

An Indefinable Quality to Your Water

We have had customers say they could tell the difference from the first time they put their foot in the water. They love the sparkling appearance, the lack of smell or taste, and they almost always say there’s an indefinable quality to the water that they sense but cannot fully explain.

Ultimately, the characteristic that unites our most devoted customers is that they are aware of what their senses are telling them. It may be that they intellectually know the system treating the water is the best available anywhere, but it’s their experience that supports and validates that perspective.

I don’t pretend to completely understand why so many people have such a powerful response to our water. Truth be told, in my own daily soaking ritual even I don’t fully know why the water makes me feel the way it does. It could be simply the lack of negative sensations, which in effect frees the mind to experience the inherent joy of being in clean water without distraction.

Speaking from a purely technical standpoint, we can objectively verify that our water is balanced and properly sanitized. Yet, the greater test, I believe, is the subjective impressions our customers develop as they come to the water time and time again.

What I can say without hesitation or uncertainty is that this is water that supports a beautiful experience – and we know it because of our innate ability to gather “data” and process it, to pool it, in the greatest information gathering device known to nature: our minds.



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