Benefits of Aquatics


Why is having a public swimming pool important to a community?  The Des Moines Pool Metropolitan Park District (DMPMPD) is proud to govern and maintain the Mount Rainier Pool with operations performed by Aquatics Management Group.  Below is a list of Safety, Health and Fitness, Social, Other Worlds/Experiences and Affordable Benefits.


In a community like Des Moines that borders Puget Sound and has three lakes within walking distance, water safety should be paramount to families.  The ethnic diversity of our community also contributes to susceptible to drowning.  Each year, more than 3,400 people drown in the United States according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).  Children younger than 14 have a higher a rate of drowning than the total population. In the United States, nearly 70 percent of African-Americans, 60 percent Latinos and 40 persent of Caucasians cannot swim according to a national research study conducted by USA Swimming Foundation and the University of Memphis.


The Mount Rainier Pool offers lap swimming, water walking and water exercise to help improve health and fitness, and to combat asthma, childhood obesity and the negative effects of aging.

Water Exercise offers many benefits.  Exercising in water builds cardiovascular stamina, strength and flexibility, helps burn body fat, increases circulation and can help to rehabilitate healing muscles and joints.

Lap Swimming helps burn more calories than running for the same amount of time.  One hour of vigorous lap swimming can burn as much as 715 calories.  One hour of running burns 606 calories.

Asthma conditions can improve as swimming is great for people who suffer from chronic lung conditions such as asthma.  Asthma sufferers, especially those with sports-induced asthma, can experience breathing difficulties because of the loss of heat and moisture in the bronchial tubes.  The bronchial tubes contract when air is dry and/or cold outside.  Swimming is a great exercise for asthma as people as the moisture lost in exercise is replaced with the moist environment of the water.

Childhood Obesity is a condition seen more frequently.  Swimming is an important activity receommended to keep kids health, build endurance and strength and maintain flexibility.  In addition to having fun in the water.  Swimming provides kids with tools, skill, habit and dedication to maintain healthier lives as adults.

Effects of Aging can be forestalled with regular water exercise.  Swimming or water-based exercise can improve  blood pressure, increase muscle mass, improve oxygen and blood flow to the brain and improve cardiovascular health.  Increasing flexibility and reducing joint inflammation are two benefits many seniors achieve.


Being able to swim allows kids and adults to participate in water-based activities such as kayaking, canoeing, paddle boarding, scuba diving, surfing, triathlon, boating, water skiing, jet skiing and rowing.  It also makes kids and adults safer attending events are water parks, beaches, lakes and summer camps.


When companies search for locations to start a new business or recruite new employees, the community assets for recreation, health and wellness and events are part of the selection process.


Swimming is one of the best sports for affordability as it only requires a swimsuit and goggles!

The Des Moines Pool Metropolitan Park District is dedicated to offering services at affordable rates by keeping fees in line with other service providers, offering reduced rate swim times each week and partnering with the Des Moines Legacy Foundation to offer scholarships for swimming lessons.  If you want more information on the Faith Callahan Memorial Swim Scholarships, click on the scholarship link at the bottom of this page.


Please contact Scott Deschenes, District General Manager at 206.429.3852 or at