Attendees met an Olympian, celebrated NSPF's 50th anniversary and learned more about the aquatic industry
The 12th annual World Aquatic Health Conference (WAHC) was held in Scottsdale, Ariz., Oct. 8 to 9, hosted by the National Swimming Pool Foundation (NSPF). Attendees came together to speak, learn and network to shape and promote growth within the aquatics industry.
A record-setting 46 states were represented along with 11 different nationalities; the U.S., Austria, Australia, Canada, China, Germany, Mexico, Norway, Sint Maarten, Ukraine, and the U.K.
“People are safer and the future looks more prosperous as a result of the industry, government, and academic leaders coming together to prevent injuries, illnesses and drowning, while also promoting the health benefits of aquatics,” said Thomas Lachocki, Ph.D., CEO of the NSPF. “It is eye-opening to see how much people can benefit from our industry. The future is bright."
The WAHC is a scientific conference, attracting a range of professionals involved in the aquatic industry. These include, aquatic facility owners and operators, service providers, consultants, parks and recreation, water parks, manufacturers, academia, associations, builders, community organizations, hotels, government, media, retail, distributors, and health/medical field professionals.
WAHC guests were able to attend two keynote addresses and pick from more than 50 different seminars. The Thursday morning keynote was a presentation by three-time Olympic gold medal winner Rowdy Gaines. Friday morning’s keynote was opened up by the minds behind Portland, Ore.’s Float On: Ashkahn Jahromi and Graham Talley.
Many aquatic organizations held committee and council meetings in conjunction with the WAHC. The Council for the Model Aquatic Health Code held the first biennial Vote on the Code Conference. An NSPF Instructor School was held before the WAHC with 37 students successfully completing the training to become certified NSPF Instructors. This was also the first year that the NSPF offered a Marketing Workshop, with a marketing consultant, to provide tips and tools to support NSPF Instructors. Following the workshop, the NSPF recognized 34 global instructors with awards for outstanding achievements. Additionally, the USA Swimming’s Regional Build a Pool Conference held a meeting immediately after the WAHC.
Angels of America’s Fallen (AOAF) honored the NSPF Friday morning. President and Founder Joe Lewis presented NSPF with a special plaque that included an American flag flown on a combat mission over Afghanistan, AOAF’s “always remember” coin, and a dog tag honoring NSPF as a sponsor. The NSPF became a supporter of the organization at the beginning of 2015 to provide swim lessons for children who have lost a parent in combat. The NSPF’s Step Into Swim campaign funds AOAF, as well as other learn-to-swim programs, which helps provide free swim lessons for children.
The next WAHC will be held in Nashville at the Sheraton Music City Hotel, Oct. 19 to 20, 2016. Individuals can register with a $50 deposit before Dec. 31, 2015 to guarantee the lowest registration price for 2016. The balance will be due when conference registration officially opens on April 1, 2016.