Written by and courtesy of Rafael/Domeyko Photography
As we approach the 2018 Winter Olympics in Korea, the Olympic Park in Seoul, is a must see. Built for the 1988 Summer Olympics, the grounds include a Cultural Art Park, Leisure Sports Park, Environmental Eco-Park, History Museum, Tennis Center, 3 Gymnasiums, Velodrom
And if you feel like getting in some laps, stop by the Olympic Park indoor swimming pool. The facility hosts three swimming pools;10-lane 50 meter, 5-lane 50 meter and 25 meter diving well. In addition to the pools, the facility has a weight center and offers instruction in dancing, bicycle spinning, aerobics, fencing, singing, water aerobics, synchronized swimming, pilates, swimming lessons (adult and children), provides a child care center and offers swim lanes for rent. There are over 7000 members and each day approximately 4000 people pass through the facility. The pool is open everyday except the second Sunday of the month. Membership costs a little less than $10 USD. Adult swim lessons (20 lessons) run $54-$80 per month. If you want a private weight trainer, that costs $270 per month (12 sessions).
Mr. Pae, Ki-ch’ang, Facility Maintenance and Manager, stated the swim complex is a public-only facility and serves as a token benefit to the public. Mr Pae added that the success of the facility is directly attributed to the highly qualified staff, instructors and dedication to customer service. “We have the best teachers, classes and facilities.” Mr Pae should know. He’s been there since 1989 and has a background in Taekwondo and swimming.
Mr. Pae welcomes everyone and enjoys seeing foreigners. He kindly asks that you remember a swim cap (mandatory, even if you’re bald), leave electronics in the lockers, and shower before entering the pool. A lock and key are provided at the entrance to the changing rooms. Some other differences you may notice are that every 50 minutes there is a 10 minute break. All swimming functions cease and participants must exit the pool. However, if you’re on the swim team, this does not apply. Also, swimming equipment such as buoys, paddles and snorkels are not authorized. These steps are taken to maximize the use and safety of the facility.
One more thing to note, Korea will host the 2019 FINA Swimming World Championships.