Why does the temperature of the water feel cold?
We regulate the temperature of the air and water separately for both the competition and leisure pools at the Indoor Aquatic Center. The competition pool water is maintained at 82°, and the air temperature of the competition pool is approximately 85-87 degrees. The leisure pool water is maintained at 87°, and the air temperature of the leisure pool is approximately 89°-90°. So, the air temperature is generally 2-5 degrees higher than the water temperature.
The digital thermostats that operate the pool boilers function with one degree of differential. Basically, the thermostat is set to 87°. The boiler turns on when the water temperature lowers one degree from the set point, or 86 degrees. The boiler then turns off when the thermostat reaches one degree above the set point, or 88°.
The water temperature is closely regulated for our competition pool. However, everyone’s bodies are different and everyone perceives temperature differently. (It’s like in an office building where some people are freezing and others are hot even though they are in the same room). But, if there is a gross change in water temperature due to a malfunction, we generally know about it pretty quick since water tests are conducted bi-hourly.
The competition pools at both the Indoor Aquatic Center and Carl Knox Natatorium are maintained at optimum national standard temperatures for competitive workouts and fitness.
There are some competitions, mostly national meets with specific facility standards, where the water temperature is lowered from its normal 82° down to 80°. However, those meets are held very infrequently, and notices are always posted in advance to alert swimmers of the change. Water temperatures don’t fluctuate quickly, and at the Indoor Aquatic Center, having almost a million gallons of water, it generally takes 24 hours for the temperature to go up or down by one degree.