A Look Into NSPF’s 2016 Collaborations-From the Desk of the CEO

The late Zig Ziglar would often say, “You can achieve just about anything you want, if you just help enough other people achieve what they want.” This was an eloquent way to reinforce the importance to serve and collaborate with others. Of course, a relationship and trust must be created before there is an opportunity to help others achieve what they want. 

This past year has had many positive collaborations and many relationships have been built.

The Genesis and NSPF merger closed on December 31, 2015. The excitement for exceptional pool and spa design and construction training that makes the water environment more beautiful, more efficient, and more functional is growing.

The Water Safety USA organization was announced on April 9th, after about two years of meetings to explore how leading water safety organizations can better work together to prevent drowning, illness, and injury. The organizations are a “who’s who” of amazing non-profit and government organizations.  What is amazing is that these organizations have agreed to have similar safety messaging in 2016 and beyond. What is very exciting is that the announced messaging from this past May focused on encouraging people to learn to swim. This message aligns with the NSPF’s Step Into Swim Campaign to create 1 million more swimmers in 10 years. This is also important because more swimmers builds demand that fosters growth for pools, hot tubs, and aquatic facilities.

A long-term friendship resulted in an affiliation agreement between the California Pool & Spa Association (CPSA) and NSPF in April as well. We are so pleased with the grass-roots network and passion CPSA exhibits when engaging with legislative challenges and working to keep pools open during a drought one of the world’s largest pool markets, California.

The Water Quality & Health Council, Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC), and NSPF collaborated through the spring to present market research studies by Memorial Day. The media campaign promoted safer swimming practices and the advertising of swimming as a fun activity. 

USA Swimming has brought together an amazing coalition to support the SwimToday program that encourages more people to swim more. This also builds demand for pools, spas, and aquatic facilities. It has been a thrill to watch the best of the best compete and excel during the Olympic Games. The publicity and promotion of swimming has been amazing. Additionally, USA Swimming has done an amazing job linking with Disney to promote the Finding Dory and the “just keep swimming” theme. We are so pleased to be a Silver Sponsor of SwimToday in this effort to encourage more swimming throughout the nation.

Often people argue that the pool/spa industry and the boating industry compete for discretionary dollars. But NSPF sees a common cause between boating and aquatics. We collaborated with “Boating Leaders” to fund research and verified that proficient swimmers are about two times more likely to want to buy a pool, hot tub, or join an aquatic facility. Not surprising, proficient swimmers are also more likely to buy a boat.  

A long term relationship between the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention have resulted in a monumental achievement in 2015 with the release of the Model Aquatic Health Code. The second edition published this summer. NSPF is the Founding Sponsor for the organization that will administer updates to the MAHC (CMAHC). As a result, our future is more likely to have one public pool code rather than hundreds. Our future is more likely to have a code based on documented science. Even more amazing is the entire code and the associated annex are free!

The NSPF Step Into Swim Campaign remains committed to create 1 million more swimmers in 10 years. Participation in formal swim lessons can reduce the likelihood of childhood drowning death by 88%.  The Master Pools Guild represents many of the best pool designers and builders in the world. They have come beside us to donate $40,000 to help support the Step Into Swim mission. The Northeast Spa & Pool Association – Foundation helped fund swimmers in New York State and for the children of heroes who died defending and serving our country (through Angels of America’s Fallen).  We gave a little to the Florida Swimming Pool Association who are already funding learn-to-swim programs throughout their chapters. Several Axiall Specialist companies funded local swim programs and Axiall and NSPF contributed some to supplement their generosity.

Everything we do, we believe will help more people live healthier lives through aquatics. Yet, we don’t do everything. We are so pleased and honored to help so many other organizations do what they want. The result is we are getting what we want: 
•    More people living healthier lives because they are spending time in, on or near the water 
•    Fewer drowning, diseases, accidents, and injuries because pools are safer
•    Demand for pools, hot tubs, and aquatic facilities increases and the industry that supports this health-focused industry will grow

I think Zig was right.  Helping others and collaboration is the way to go. We are pleased to play our small part in a brighter future!

Dr. Thomas Lachocki, PhD, CEO

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[1] Ruth A. Brenner, Gitanjali Saluja Taneja, Denise L. Haynie, Ann C. Trumble, Cong Qian, Ron M. Klinger, and Mark A. Klebanoff, “Association Between Swimming Lessons and Drowning in Childhood: A Case-Control Study,” Archive of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine, 2009; 163(3):203-210. http://archpedi.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=381058&resultClick=3 

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