Our long awaited new pool opened this summer and this week local paddlers were one of the last of the user groups to start regular winter sessions, with a familiarisation evening for coaches to get to know the facility. The competition pool is a lane wider, and the water surface is level with the floor, which makes it seem a lot bigger than the old pool. The depth of the pool is adjustable which means it is possible to have a larger area for working in pairs supporting or spotting a partner.
The light and space and acoustics are very pleasant too.
The new pool is built on to an existing leisure centre with new squash courts, gym and health suite next to a cinema and indoor arena, climbing wall and bouldering cave. With exercise classes and sports clubs using the facility, a lot of folk come and go - it might mean paddling gets a little more exposure...
|What a lot of space!|
It was a pleasant change to roll in warm water. While others got used to paddling short boats again ready for the upcoming canoe polo season, I was getting used to being in a constrained space again and that 'first pool session of the year', barely discernable sense of buoyancy being a tiny bit different.
|Odd one out.|
After a summer of rolling on my own it is quite different to focus on learning something new or sharpening up a movement with so much going on in the same space, but it is really useful to have someone with a camera sitting at the side of the pool giving immediate feedback . I am looking forward to getting some shots from the perspective of the spectators gallery which looks down on the competition pool. That could be really useful.
|Underwater shots are always useful.|
All in all it takes the edge off the gloom following the clocks going back an hour.
|Glu-lam 'ribs' hold up the roof.|
Looking forward to helping a few folk on the journey to getting their first rolls this winter, and who knows, maybe getting some company over here on the dark side...