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  • Health Club Pool

    My athletic club , which up to five years ago, was a men only social club with a swimming pool ( which was suits optional.)but in reality, everyone(including guests and male kids ) swam nude.
    To respond to declining membership, administration decided to become a public health club.(still men only) which resulted with local Health Department visits and suggestions. The suggestions included major renovation to the swimming pool , which was closed for nine(9) months. for the necessary repairs. The pool last week was given the Health Department seal of approval to reopen. The Club administration is now saying the Health Department okay'd the reopening of the pool but with the condition, pool users wear suits for hygiene reasons.
    Is this something a Health Department can dictate? Or is this just someone's bad idea of an April Fool joke? I swam throughout high school and college without a suit and never heard of this argument before.

  • #2
    Has the club consulted with its attorney on that as a limitation or restriction? That is, if they want to?

    While I fully understand that as a rule for diaper aged patrons...young or old...I have never heard about it as a requirement as a general practice. It frankly does not make sense.

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    • #3
      You could inquire about the specific health code regulations that were used. bathing suits that are typically used for pool swimming are useless for hygiene purposes. Unless your bathing suit keeps everything it covers dry, all kinds of germs will pass from the body into the water.

      Bob S.

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      • #4
        Never heard of "hygiene reasons" ... I can't imagine what "protection" a bathing suit offers, save for sitting down in areas outside the pool.

        There could be other unstated reasons - insurance/liability might be concerned about a pool for all ages, where nudity is involved. There may also be a push by women's groups for pool use, who knows...
        Last edited by usuallylurk; 04-06-2017, 09:24 AM.

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        • #5
          There is no hygiene reason, it's someone who's trying to rationalize his prejudices. You can find an Official Sanitary Recommendation in "Recommended practice for design, equipment, and operation of swimming pools and other public bathing places", 1957, by the Joint Committee on Bathing Places of the ‎American Public Health Association and the ‎Conference of State Sanitary Engineers, which says on page 36 that "At indoor pools used exclusively by men, nude bathing should be required."

          - Caipora

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Caipora View Post
            There is no hygiene reason, it's someone who's trying to rationalize his prejudices. You can find an Official Sanitary Recommendation in "Recommended practice for design, equipment, and operation of swimming pools and other public bathing places", 1957, by the Joint Committee on Bathing Places of the ‎American Public Health Association and the ‎Conference of State Sanitary Engineers, which says on page 36 that "At indoor pools used exclusively by men, nude bathing should be required."

            - Caipora
            That was 60 years ago. Times change. Filtration systems and their technologies have improved,

            But as I said, more importantly, insurance companies and advising attorneys may set down rules , or, more appropriately, guidance, as well. Assuming the pool/club ownership made it an issue - the club's attorney might say - "if you can go along with that rule, go along with it." And most businesses will follow the advice of their attorneys.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by usuallylurk View Post
              That was 60 years ago. Times change. Filtration systems and their technologies have improved,
              True, but if swimming suitless put less strain on yesterday's filtration systems, it would still put less strain on today's. Hygiene is not the reason.
              But more importantly, insurance companies and advising attorneys may set down rules , or, more appropriately, guidance, as well.
              Sometimes, quite properly: my 1947 "Manual of Boys' Club Operation" states on page 263 that for a diving board with an elevation of 3 feet, the "Minimum Safe Water Depth" is six feet, which seems beyond reckless.

              However, if Zoar's club is getting rules or guidance from insurance companies, it should be presented as such, and not disguised as the "Heath Department" issuing "hygiene" rules. Zoar should ask to see the Health Department's ruling, which would certainly have arrived in writing. If there is such, he should check how it can be appealed.

              Again, I think it's someone trying to make everyone follow his prejudices, much like 19th century missionaries to Hawaii, who were sure God wanted the natives to dress like New Englanders.

              - Caipora

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Caipora View Post
                True, but if swimming suitless put less strain on yesterday's filtration systems, it would still put less strain on today's. Hygiene is not the reason.

                Sometimes, quite properly: my 1947 "Manual of Boys' Club Operation" states on page 263 that for a diving board with an elevation of 3 feet, the "Minimum Safe Water Depth" is six feet, which seems beyond reckless.

                However, if Zoar's club is getting rules or guidance from insurance companies, it should be presented as such, and not disguised as the "Heath Department" issuing "hygiene" rules. Zoar should ask to see the Health Department's ruling, which would certainly have arrived in writing. If there is such, he should check how it can be appealed.

                Again, I think it's someone trying to make everyone follow his prejudices, much like 19th century missionaries to Hawaii, who were sure God wanted the natives to dress like New Englanders.

                - Caipora
                I don't think it's religious prejudices. It's that the club- if following directions from insurance companies and/or lawyers, wants to fend off any such challenges.

                Remember - it's a swim club - NOT a swim club for those who wish to swim nude, per se.

                Especially if it's a club that welcomes all ages. It might be easier for the club's directors to say "hygiene reasons" than "our insurance carrier (or legal counsel) thought that going nude isn't a good idea, given the times, the litigious society we live in, and child endangerment hysteria."

                ************************************************** *************************

                I might add - one of the non-landeds I belong to (MCSB) cancelled a planned swim - and some "experts" speculated it was lack of support, pressure from community groups, etc. etc. when it was ONLY the facility, which is closed in the winter but they opened the pool for our rental, forgot we were showing up and the manager (not the owner) was nowhere to be found . Indeed, around 35-40 showed that day. And the facility gave us a free night - and also half-price on the next monthly rental.

                So - sometimes things do not appear as they seem..
                Last edited by usuallylurk; 04-08-2017, 04:50 PM.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by usuallylurk View Post
                  Especially if it's a club that welcomes all ages. It might be easier for the club's directors to say "hygiene reasons" than "our insurance carrier (or legal counsel) thought that going nude isn't a good idea, given the times, the litigious society we live in, and child endangerment hysteria."
                  Such insurance dictates do exist. I read of a senior citizen's club expelled from its meeting place in a church basement because the church's insurance company declared that under- and over-18s must have separate restrooms, and the church had to decide between its Sunday school, accommodating the elderly, or the high expense of constructing more washrooms.

                  Zoar describes his club as
                  My athletic club , which up to five years ago, was a men only social club with a swimming pool [...]To respond to declining membership, administration decided to become a public health club.
                  I think that the pivotal question here is "club". There were and still are quite expensive private mens' clubs in New York City where members swim nude. The term "health club" has been appropriated by for-profit gyms. If Zoar's "club" is now in fact a for-profit gym, the owners can tell the customers whatever fairy tales they please, such as that signing up for a 12-month membership in the warm glow of New Year's resolutions will provide health and weight loss.

                  However, if it is still a club, then the directors respond to the members, and should be telling the truth about the reason for the change. If the members feel strongly, they can say, "Well, get a quote from another insurance company," or "Demand they show you the paragraph in the health code."

                  Originally posted by usuallylurk View Post
                  I don't think it's religious prejudices.
                  I'm not saying the prejudice is religious, I don't even know that it's conscious. People do a lot of things out of an desire to conform to what everyone else is doing, or what they absorbed at their mother's knee, or to "be modern", without a valid reason. That's why you see aluminum siding on brick houses.

                  - Caipora

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