In Praise Of Swimming (Pools)

Hotel Brescia, Darfo Boario Terme, Italy

I have always been a fan of swimming pools since I was very little; I was four years old when my parents used to take me to the local waterpark while vacationing in the Italian region of Calabria, where most of my family comes from. I learned to swim without armbands around that time; my parents struggled to get me out of the water because I wanted to spend as much time as possible in the pool.

Aside from tennis (I enjoy ice-skating and soccer, but mostly as a spectator), swimming is the only sport I have ever been interested in; the feeling of lightness, staying immersed in the water… it’s something that beats out everything else. In addition to that, the color blue calls to mind feelings of serenity and calmness and it conveys an impression of reliability.

As well as being fun, it is a great way to keep ourselves fit, happy and healthy. It can provide us with a low-impact workout and its mental benefits help us relax and feel good about ourselves. We live in stressful times and the current global situation may impact our well-being, but if we manage to find space for something we love, this will contribute to improve our lives and help us make better decisions. For me, a swimming pool is the ideal place to reconnect, breathe out the worries of everyday life and work out a bit. I also have low blood pressure so the summer heat usually makes me feel exhausted and with no energy left; swimming makes me feel at peace with myself and takes away the feeling of tiredness caused by the high temperatures.

I acknowledge that people generally prefer going to the seaside, and I myself love it, especially during the low season; no crowds and the chance to actually enjoy the silence is the best way to experience it. However, this is probably why I became so fond of swimming pools; they began to provide more calm and genuine relax than the average day at the beach in the summer months. The heatwaves of the last few years have also caused an invasion of jellyfish in the Mediterranean sea, so it has become a bit difficult to enjoy swimming at sea without frantically looking around for fear of being stung.

A famous photographer chose the swimming pool as the main subject of his works; Slim Aarons photographed the best pool parties in the 1960s and ’70s. His images portray the jet set of that era and its glamorous allure, but the main character remains the pool and everything that surrounds it. I had the pleasure of attending his London exhibition “Poolside with Slim Aarons” at Getty Images Gallery back in 2016 and I also plan to get a coffee-table book showcasing his best works.

Pictured below are some of my artistic photos taken by the pool over the years, plus one of Slim Aaron’s famous photographs displayed in London’s West End at the time of the exhibition.

Swimming Pool - L'eau.
Swiss Diamond Hotel, Lugano, Switzerland
Thermal Baths.
Thermal Baths, Darfo Boario Terme, Italy
Elba Island - Reflections.
Porto Azzurro, Elba Island, Italy
Pool - Armani Hotel Milano.
Armani Hotel Spa, Milan, Italy
Poolside with Slim Aarons, Getty Images Gallery, London, UK (2016)

All pictures are my own.

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