Nearly 400 attendees gathered in Indianapolis Oct. 16-18 for the 10th Annual World Aquatic Health Conference and Aquatic Physical Therapy Summit.

The event showcased new research, including health benefits of water exercise and therapy, making pools and spas safer, and the impact of disinfection byproducts (DBPs) on public health.

Participants were able to attend more than 50 seminars on topics such as recreational water illness (RWI) prevention, DBPs, facility management, drowning prevention, health benefits, and natural and new industrial technology. A scientific poster session, a tour of three aquatics facilities with the designers and facility staffs, lunch round tables, an aquatic art show, and table-top displays presented by nonprofit organizations and conference sponsors rounded out the event offerings.

The conference kicked off with a keynote address by Debbie Phelps, mother of swim champion Michael Phelps.

Other highlights included a presentation by Dr. Joel Stager, professor of kinesiology at Indiana University, who shared his research that has focused largely on the “fountain of youth” aspect of swimming in his presentation “Habitual Aquatic Conditioning.”

Additionally, Ernest R. “Chip” Blatchley III, Ph.D., P.E., BCEE, Purdue University, and Judy LaKind, Ph.D., LaKind Associates, explained the science affecting water and air quality and people’s health from urine in pool water. LaKind followed with a detailed, state-of-the-science review on exposure to DBPs in pool environments.

Fourteen leading organizations provided sponsorships to help underwrite the costs of offering post-conference videotaped seminars. For the first time ever, the seminars are available for free and can be accessed at www.nspf.org/en/Conference/Conference2013.aspx.

The 11th Annual World Aquatic Health Conference is scheduled for Oct. 8-10, 2014, in Portland, Ore. n