Avid swimmer dives into pool closures discussion

Swimming expert Claudia Mendiola
Swimming expert Claudia Mendiola(KGNS)
Published: May. 28, 2020 at 3:03 PM CDT
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Local guppies say this summer might be quite the bummer for those who are looking to make a splash at the city’s pools.

This comes after the City of Laredo made the decision that all pools, splash parks, and recreational facilities would be closed this summer.

During the hot summer months, many usually tend to take a dip in the pool to cool off from the triple-digit temperatures, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic, things will be different this time around.

Even after Governor Abbott made the decision to open water parks and pools in the State of Texas, Laredo is one of the few cities that has chosen not to open its facilities.

The announcement regarding the city’s decision has caught Aquademy Swim instructor Claudia Mendiola off guard.

Claudia says, “I really think that it’s going to be a downfall not only for swimmers who swim competitively but also to the general public. As a swimming instructor, swimming is a really big aspect on a lot of children’s lives, swimming lessons are very important.”

Not only is summer a time when many families and kids rush to the pools to cool off, but it’s also a time where local athletes take advantage.

Claudia says, “In my opinion I feel like you are taking a little bit more from athletes themselves because this is what they train for. Swimming is a yearly competitive sport and as we see a lot of other cities are not closing their pools so these athletes are at a disadvantage as well.

And when it comes to training for a swim competition, it can be hard without the major component.

Claudia says, “When it comes to swimming, a pool is very crucial. It's just like any other sport, you know whether its pole vault, track, you need your equipment and we need our pools to train for that."

Although Claudia understands the need for safety precautions, she believes that the pools are safer than other businesses that are already open.

Claudia says,“A lot of cleaning chemicals go into pools, there’s a lot of chlorine and acid that pulls it in these facilities, not just during this pandemic, but just in general, making sure that sure that these facilities are clean.”

Meanwhile, JJ Gomez with the City Parks Department believes that it’s better to be safe than sorry.

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