PEI

New pool needed for P.E.I. arthritis aquafit program

The Arthritis Society in Charlottetown is looking for a new pool for its popular arthritis aquafit class, after the Delta Hotel decided to no longer provide its pool.

Warmer-than-normal water needed for arthritis sufferers

Arthritis aquafit classes require a warm pool and waist-to-shoulder-deep water. (Sarah MacMillan/CBC)

The Arthritis Society in Charlottetown is looking for a new pool for its popular arthritis aquafit class, after the Delta Hotel decided to no longer provide its pool.

The independently-run program was offered for years at the Delta, but that ended Aug. 31.

"I think the secret is finding a pool that has a couple properties," said Susan Tilley-Russell, executive director of the Atlantic region with the Arthritis Society. 

30 C ideal temperature

A warm temperature is the first key — about 30 C is perfect, she said. They also need a pool with water that is waist-deep to shoulder-deep, is easy to enter and exit, and has insurance.

Delta Prince Edward general manager James Tingley said the hotel's pool is unstaffed and there was quite a bit of prep and follow-up work with the aquafit program, including raising and lowering the temperature of the pool to the target range. It gave the society a month's notice of its decision.

The society has a couple of Charlottetown pools in mind and is working with pool managers to see if they can make one of them happen.

Up to 12 regulars

Up to a dozen people regularly attended the class, said Tilley-Russell, noting that exercising in water is particularly helpful for arthritis sufferers because water supports their body weight.

"It would be great if we could get one started in September, particularly because September is Arthritis Awareness Month. Hopefully we'll find out more in the next week or two."

About 25,000 people in P.E.I. have arthritis, the society said. 

With files from Laura Chapin

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