Improving communities through sport

How the Top Aquatics Venues Measure Success


Image courtesy of Adventure Cove

In the world of aquatics, success is not a matter of chance but a result of meticulous planning, exceptional service delivery, and a commitment to excellence. The top aquatics venues around the globe set the standard in the industry by employing a number of different approaches to measure their achievements. These establishments understand that success encompasses more than just financial gain; it involves enhancing community engagement, providing outstanding programming, and ensuring safety to continually improve operations.

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Community Engagement and Economic Impact

Leading aquatic venues are aware that the heart of their success lies in community engagement. By cultivating an environment that embraces diversity and inclusivity, these establishments not only welcome individuals and families from various walks of life but also knit them into the fabric of their community. Their efforts extend beyond the confines of their pools; they become integral community players by participating in local events, supporting swim teams, and offering a variety of programs designed to meet the unique needs of their community members, including swimming lessons for different age groups and a wide range of aquatic programming.

This proactive approach not only strengthens community bonds but also instills a sense of belonging and collective spirit among participants, making these venues much more than just places to swim. You can gauge your facility’s community engagement by paying close attention to your Google reviews, the number of memberships you sold, how many visitors you get each year, and the number of people who participate in your programs. Using these reviews and numbers, you can get a better understanding of how your facility is performing and whether or not changes need to be made in your operations or possibly in your marketing efforts.

On the economic front, the contribution of aquatic venues to their local communities is both significant and multifaceted. By creating jobs and drawing visitors from beyond their immediate area, these venues act as catalysts for local economic activity. The influx of visitors not only supports the growth of nearby businesses, such as retail shops and restaurants, but also plays a pivotal role in the broader economic development of the area.

Measuring the success of aquatic venues through the lens of their economic impact reveals their role as vital community hubs that do more than just provide recreational and fitness opportunities—they foster economic prosperity and serve as lively centers for community life.

It may be difficult to measure what your exact economic impact would be, but by collecting data on the number of visitors you get at swim meets, concession stand sales, and membership numbers, you can start to get a better idea of the impact that your facility has on the area.

Excellence in Swim Lessons and Programming

Swimming lessons and quality aquatic programming hold a transformative power within communities, serving as much more than just recreational activities or skill development sessions. These programs, when executed with a focus on quality and inclusivity, become pivotal in fostering community development and even saving lives.

The leading cause of death for children ages one to four is drowning. According to a study from the National Library of Medicine, participation in formal swimming lessons reduces the risk of drowning for children ages one to four by 88%. The benefits of well-structured swimming lessons don’t just help to prevent drownings, they also contribute to community cohesion by offering opportunities for children and adults to engage positively with peers and mentors. This communal engagement is crucial in building a supportive and interconnected community where individuals can thrive both in and out of the water.

Moreover, the impact of effective swimming programs on individual well-being and safety cannot be overstated. Learning to swim equips individuals with essential survival skills, promotes physical health, and supports mental well-being. Quality swim lessons that prioritize fun and adapt to the readiness of the learner not only make the learning process more enjoyable but also ensure that participants develop a lifelong appreciation for water safety.

That emphasis on creating a positive learning environment highlights the role of aquatic programs in nurturing confident, competent swimmers who are well-prepared to enjoy the benefits of aquatic activities for the rest of their lives. Through these initiatives, top aquatics venues contribute significantly to the overall health and safety of the community, marking their success not just by the number of participants, but by the lasting positive impact they have on individuals and the community.

Prioritizing Safety and Risk Mitigation

Top aquatics venues understand the importance of safety, not just as a regulatory requirement but as a core value that protects and respects the well-being of every patron who comes through their doors. Implementing advanced safety protocols is the first step in the commitment to safety, encompassing everything from rigorous lifeguard training and certification to the installation of state-of-the-art rescue equipment. Measuring the number of incidents at your facility is a good way to see if your efforts are working, even though just a single incident is already too many.

Furthermore, venues should prioritize the health of their aquatic environments, ensuring that water quality exceeds expectations and that sustainable practices are in place to reduce their environmental footprint, thereby safeguarding both their visitors and the planet (and sometimes helping to lower chemical costs).

The General Manager of Caporella Aquatic Center, Desiree Shirley, mentioned in our aquatics webinar that when she was hired to take over management of Caporella she noticed that the facility was spending a lot on pool chemicals. She said, “When I first came here, I had asked to get a copy of the last management company’s expenses so I could get an idea of what they were spending versus what I could spend and it took me probably two to three months to get the pool balanced to a point where we actually started to see a cost savings of $6000 for the city.”

In addition to establishing good safety measures, top aquatics venues recognize the importance of continuous staff training and emergency preparedness. Regular training sessions for all aquatic staff—not just lifeguards—ensure that everyone is equipped with the knowledge and skills necessary to respond effectively to any situation, whether it’s a minor injury or a life-threatening emergency. These training programs often include first aid, CPR, and specialized rescue techniques, tailored to the unique features of the venue.

Pelican Bay Aquatic Center introduced a junior guard program last year for anyone ages 10 to 15 years old. General Manager, Marina Wells, said “That gap between 10 and 15, they’ve kind of outgrown lessons, they’re not old enough to truly lifeguard, and it’s a really wonderful program. If you don’t have it at your facility, I would encourage you to look into it.” Because it was the first year they held it they only had two sessions, but both sessions filled up and they even received several requests to add more sessions, which they will be doing this year.

This focus on preparedness and ongoing education fosters a culture of safety that reassures visitors they are entering a facility where their well-being is the top priority, ultimately enhancing the overall experience for everyone involved.

The top aquatics venues measure success through a comprehensive approach that values community engagement, educational excellence, and safety. By focusing on these key areas, they not only achieve financial prosperity but also make a lasting impact on the health, safety, and well-being of their communities.

For those interested in experiencing the benefits of top-tier aquatic services or looking to partner with an industry leader, we invite you to explore the aquatics operations and management offerings of The Sports Facilities Companies. With our expertise, experience, and commitment to community, we are dedicated to setting the standard for success in the aquatics industry. Contact us today or give us a call at (727) 474-3845 to learn more about how we can make a splash together!

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