What to Look for in a Gym With a Swimming Pool


Now is the time of year when people are searching for a gym with a pool to soak up some sun and enjoy a relaxing swim on a hot summer day. If you’re looking for a local swimming pool for you and the kids to enjoy this summer, here’s a list of things you should add to your checklist to find the best option that fits all your needs.

Gym with a Pool Checklist

Indoor & Outdoor Pool Options

The first thing to consider when looking for a local swimming pool is “Does it have indoor and outdoor pools?” Many gyms have either an indoor pool OR an outdoor pool, but not both. Health clubs, like Elite Sports Clubs, have both in the same location. We call our clubs that have pools our “Splash Clubs,” and all three Splash Clubs have both indoor and outdoor pool options.

The primary benefit of having indoor pools is that you can swim laps or hold swim lessons year-round, as all activity isn’t reliant on decent weather or warm temperatures. However, having the option to swim or lounge outdoors is an added bonus, especially to enjoy the limited warm weather we have in Wisconsin. Elite Sports Clubs holds year-round group and private swim lessons, and our indoor pools are also open for classes and lap swimming year-round. Our outdoor pools are typically open from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

What about the space around the pool? Do you like to lounge or sunbathe on comfortable furniture? Do you like to enjoy a drink or snack at a picnic table? Need an umbrella for those particularly hot, sunny days? These are all things to consider when looking for a gym with a pool. Spacious pool decks are of particular importance lately in order to maintain social distancing. Having a convenient spot on the pool deck will allow you to supervise your young swimmers or watch them during their swim lessons. Elite Sport Clubs has spacious decks that, for the most part, uniformly wrap around the pool granting easy access and sight lines from all angles. We are also in the process of getting brand new furniture and umbrellas.

If you have babies, toddlers, or young kids that are a little too small to swim in the main swimming pool, shallow pools or splash pads are a fun place for them to splash around or run through fountains. Do you also need a playground or grass area for when kids need a break from the water but still want to be outside? Two of Elite’s Splash Clubs have shallow pools, and all three Splash Clubs have grassy areas or playground space for kids to be active outside of the pool.

Filtration System

No one wants to swim in a dirty pool. Filtration systems remove leaves, dirt, and other unwanted pollutants from the water. Most gyms with pools shock their pools with lots of chemicals to kill germs. These chemicals can be harsh on the hair, skin, eyes, and even may ruin your swimsuits over time.

Elite Sports Clubs is one of the very few clubs in the Milwaukee area to use a  saltwater filtration system. This type of filtration system maintains a lower, yet consistent level of chlorine to maintain the clean quality of water. Our members have said they notice their skin is less itchy when swimming in our pools compared to other traditional pools.

If you’re unfamiliar with saltwater filtration systems, you can read more about how they work.

Dedicated Lap Lanes

Lap swimmers are a dedicated breed of gym goer. If you enjoy the many health benefits that come from swimming workouts, you’ll want to look for a gym with a pool that has dedicated lap lanes. You may also just want time in the pool without kids making waves or tossing pool toys, so you may also want to consider a pool that has scheduled adult swim time. The opposite may also be true if you come with your family, and that the pool may also have specific family swim times so you can make plans accordingly.

Because lap lanes tend to be popular early morning and in the evening, you may not be guaranteed to get a lane. The COVID-19 pandemic has presented a new opportunity for gyms to create advanced lane reservation systems so you avoid the frustration of showing up to the gym only to find no lanes are available.

Elite Sports Clubs has dedicated lap lanes in both its indoor and outdoor pools. Please check our online schedule as some lanes may be reserved for aquatics exercise classes or swim lessons during certain times of the day. You can make your own advanced reservations through our online member portal. At this time, we are only allowing one swimmer per lane.

Hot Tub or Warm Water Pool

While the kids are splashing, swimming, or playing games in the main swimming pool, take advantage of some relaxing “me time” in the hot tub or warm water pool.

Elite has an indoor warm water pool/hot tub at all 3 of its Splash Clubs, and one of its locations has an additional outdoor hot tub right on the pool deck.

Food & Beverage Service

A pool that has food and beverage service isn’t a must, but it’s definitely a nice-to-have feature, especially if you want to make a day out of going to the pool with the family. Kids tend to get hungry after a busy day of swimming and playing with their friends. Meal options, snacks, and even a refreshing beverage will enhance your pool-going experience.

Elite Sports Clubs has an outdoor grill and food service station at each of the Splash Clubs. We offer freshly grilled burgers, sandwiches, a wide variety of snacks, smoothies, and even alcoholic beverages for the adults.

Included Towel Service

Not all gyms or recreational swimming pools have towels available for everyone to use. While you’re always welcome to bring your own towel, it’s sometimes just nice to not have to worry about bringing one for each member of the family.

Elite Sports Clubs has included towel service for all its members – for the outdoor pool as well as for exercising.

Locker Room Access

If you’re a parent with little ones, having access to family locker/changing rooms is a necessity. It’s nice to have a private space where you can get your little ones settled with their swimwear and sunscreen before they jump in the pool, and all cleaned up after they get out.

Not all pools have locker room access, but it’s definitely something to consider if you like a safe place to store your belongings or change into your swimwear. Showering before and after your swim is also a good hygiene practice.

It’s one thing to have lockers rooms available, and another to have them with easy access next to, or at least very close to, the pools. Some gyms might have locker rooms, but not exactly close to the pool so you have to walk through the club with your swimsuit on.

Elite Sports Clubs has family, men’s, and women’s locker rooms conveniently located next to the indoor and outdoor pools. In many cases, the locker rooms lead directly into the pool area so you can quickly change or shower as needed.

Gym with a Pool in Milwaukee

Elite Sports Clubs prides itself as a “one stop” health club, meaning you can exercise, swim, spend time with your family, and play sports, and so much more all in one location. If you’re looking for a gym with a pool for the summer or just to go lap swimming, we would strongly encourage you to stop by for a tour and see our facilities for yourself.

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