Studies have shown that people who exercise regularly often have better skin and lose weight faster than those who do not. In fact, one study has shown that an athlete in their 40s often has better skin than non-athletes in their 20s and 30s.
Exercising is essential to leading a healthy life, but it can be hard to stay fit when cold weather strikes. Now that we’re about halfway through fall in upstate New York, many families are wondering how to keep active under piles of snow.
One thought that might cross your mind is an outdoor ice rink. Countless homes have pools throughout upstate New York, but many are left idle until Memorial Day comes back around. After all, if the Lasker Rink in New York City can seamlessly transition from a fun swimming pool to a polar ice rink, why can’t your pool?
Here’s how you can safely turn your pool into an ice rink this winter:
Keep an eye on the temperature
A home pool can be crafted into an ice rink only if temperatures do not exceed 32 degrees Fahrenheit for at least two months. This is typically no problem in New York, but climate change may have something to say about that. Be sure to watch the thermostat and only head outside after a long stretch of cold weather to prevent falling into the ice.
Know the depth of your pool
When crafting an ice rink from your pool, you should only skate on the shallowest section. Your pool water will be transparent if a pool is no deeper than 20 inches but this color gradually turns more blue the deeper your pool goes. As your pool gets deeper and deeper, this water becomes harder to freeze, especially if you have an outdoor pool. That’s why it’s often recommended that you invest in a large vinyl blanket to help keep you safe.
Invest in a vinyl pool blanket
Pools often contain thousands of gallons of water, most of which will be impossible to freeze in upstate New York. A vinyl blanket will help create an additional barrier between you and the water beneath the ice. All you need to do is lower your pool’s water by about 20 inches and drape a vinyl blanket on top of the water so that it makes contact with the surface. Keep in mind this cover needs to be large: the average American home has almost doubled in size since the 1950s and that includes the pool and landscaping. Be sure to feed the blanket onto the surrounding deck before it’s weighted down with sandbags for additional support.
Then, all you need to do is add another four inches of water on top of the blanket and wait for it to freeze over. If you’re worried about damaging your pool, don’t be: in fact, using this plastic cover, which was likely made by some of the one million Americans working in plastics manufacturing, can actually protect your pool’s surface from contaminants and erosion.
Winterize your pool
This is a necessity for every New York pool owner, but it’s worth mentioning as you prep your future ice rink. As the weather grows colder, you need to winterize your pool. The pool itself will be fine; the winterization process primarily deals with protecting pipes from freezing and eroding.
Before you start building the ice rink of your dreams, be sure to pad your pipes with liners and rely on a scheduled pool filtration pump to keep your pipes from freezing over. Even a small leak can waste up to 90 gallons of water per day, costing you significantly if it isn’t dealt with quickly.
Grab a pair of skates
As long as you follow these steps, you should be able to craft a reliable ice rink for the cold months of winter. All you need to do now is grab your ice skates (and maybe a helmet) to indulge in outdoor fun all winter long. Don’t be afraid to use your smartphone to search for weather patterns and invest in a new pair of skates. It’s estimated that over 51% of smartphone searchers have discovered a new company while browsing online. Always remember: safety first.