Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Indoor Health Adventure at the Public Pool


                       Christiansburg Aquatic Center
 When you're a kid, you really look forward to splashing around with water in the summer, whether it's from a sprinkler out on the lawn or at a pool or beach. Having a backyard pool is a nice thing for a family to have in the hot weather and makes for an interesting, enjoyable summer. But what if you want to go swimming as the weather cools off?
      Unless you live near a boat dock and the temperatures stay the same all year, you'll need to find an indoor place to go for a swim in cooler temps. And it's a healthy thing to do as well.
     Pools are actually quite a popular enterprise, for the buyer and seller. According to  Aquaticnet,  there are over three million above ground pools in America, and 270,000 commercial pools. And we were going to try out one of the latter.
     It was sad when "our" indoor pool, part of Radford University, was closed because of a shortsighted former president. At one point our town had an outdoor pool at the park by the river, then one in the central park (right before integration, when the town gave it up). Now the nearest indoor community pool is down the road, in Christiansburg. But as we were residents from the nearby town without a pool, we were given a free pass (for now). 
     Christiansburg's aquatic center is fairly generous in size, though most of its parking is well below the center; it requires negotiating a lot of stairs (not too convenient for babies or the elderly). It has a "competition" pool with several lanes and is seven feet deep all the way around, handy for swim meets. Though you will get your hair wet as you have to swim under the thick lane dividers to get to a ladder to climb out.
     In another room -- there is a glass wall dividing them -- is a big family pool. It starts at three feet near the steps into the water, which is convenient, and only gets as deep as five feet. There is also a fun pool area for little kids, with a curved water slide, colored buckets that toss water on you every so often, and what looks like a continuous, unmoving sprinkler above everyone's heads. Rather unique, an outdoor water experience brought to an indoor pool.
     If you go by mid-afternoon (close to 2) there is almost no one in the pool at all. We shared a huge area with a couple, who shot baskets with a little ball that went into a small rim on the edge of the water, trying to get their baby to do the same. Needless to say, he couldn't. Those durn lap dividers weren't in the way so swimming was more comfortable in this big family pool.
     We hope to go back. It's all a matter of scheduling, as we don't usually swim in cold weather. It would be one way, though, of keeping in shape, especially around Christmastime.

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