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How Technology Can Help Solve the Youth Coaching Crisis

(NewsUSA) - Youth sports are a formative experience for many kids, and provide opportunities not only to hone athletic abilities but also to develop strong character, values, and cooperative skills that will serve them well for life. The backbone of any team is its coach.

The right coach can help kids grow both as players and people. Unfortunately, due to a shortage of trained youth sports coaches, so many volunteers – mainly parents – have had to assume the role just so their children can play, according to the National Council for Accreditation of Coaching Education, that about four million out of 7.5 million youth and school coaches in America are now classified as volunteers. And most of them cite the lack of accessible and affordable training as a reason for not sticking with it for all that long.

The young athletes suffer most from the coaching shortage. They’re the ones who the University of Maine found are five times more likely to drop out if led by an untrained coach than players led by qualified ones.

However, new technologies are emerging that can support coaches of both large organizations and small teams, making it easier for them to get access to proper trainings which will help them create the best experiences for their athletes.

TeamSnap, a premier creator of youth sports software solutions, is revolutionizing coaching nationwide with on-demand, high-quality, online resources designed to simplify coaching responsibilities and provide training modules that help kids stay engaged in sports.

Their latest offering, TeamSnap+, offers educational resources in multiple areas including:

-Team drills. Collaboration with professional organizations including Major League Baseball and Major League Soccer to develop week-by-week programs for a range of age and skill levels.

-Individual assistance. One-on-one programs and guidance to help coaches tailor training to individual athletes.

-Off the field. Take youth coaching to the next level with expert advice on discussing mental health, coaching kids with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and developing essential life skills.

"TeamSnap's new training content was developed in collaboration with the greatest sporting bodies in the world. We are setting a new standard in youth sports by providing it to the millions of coaches and parents who already use the TeamSnap app," says Peter Frintzilas, CEO of TeamSnap. "Since day one, TeamSnap has been committed to building all of the resources that coaches and parents need to feel confident during every practice and game to help their athletes realize their full potential."

The coaching tools available through the platform deliver the crucial support that coaches, volunteers, and parents need to focus on what truly counts: getting kids of all abilities into the game.  For more information, visit:

La Semana del Aprendizaje Juvenil destaca las oportunidades

(NewsUSA) - La Semana del Aprendizaje Juvenil, una iniciativa del Departamento de Trabajo de EE. UU., presenta una variedad de eventos y oradores en lugares de todos los Estados Unidos para mostrar los numerosos beneficios de los programas de aprendizaje registrado para jóvenes y adultos jóvenes de 16 a 24 años.

La iniciativa a nivel nacional se lleva a cabo del 5 al 11 de mayo de 2024 e incluye más de 400 eventos y más de 110 proclamaciones destinadas a celebrar y educar al público sobre los aprendizajes registrados. Los aprendices actuales y graduados de programas de aprendizaje registrado compartirán sus experiencias e historias de éxito.

La Semana de Aprendizaje Juvenil es una oportunidad para que empleadores, asociaciones industriales, organizaciones laborales, organizaciones comunitarias, socios de la fuerza laboral, proveedores de educación y líderes gubernamentales organicen eventos, lancen nuevos programas y creen conciencia sobre estas oportunidades profesionales de Aprendizaje Registrado que cambian la vida de jóvenes y adultos jóvenes y cómo crean una fuente sostenible de talento diverso y calificado para los empleos de hoy y de mañana en industrias críticas.

Los asistentes escucharán cómo los jóvenes y adultos jóvenes pueden utilizar los aprendizajes registrados para ganar salarios competitivos mientras obtienen capacitación y habilidades para crecer y avanzar en carreras esenciales para la fuerza laboral actual y los empleos del futuro. Los aprendizajes registrados dan como resultado una credencial reconocida a nivel nacional y pueden incluir la posibilidad de obtener créditos universitarios y, a menudo, un título sin costo alguno para el aprendiz.

"La Semana del Aprendizaje Juvenil reconoce el compromiso de la administración Biden-Harris de crear oportunidades de empleo para jóvenes y adultos jóvenes y el papel fundamental que desempeñan en la infraestructura laboral de nuestra nación", dijo la secretaria interina de Trabajo, Julie Su, en un comunicado anunciando el evento. "Los aprendizajes para jóvenes no son sólo caminos hacia carreras profesionales; son puentes hacia futuros llenos de promesas, oportunidades y un potencial infinito", enfatizó.

El Departamento de Trabajo de EE. UU. organizó dos eventos durante la Semana del Aprendizaje Juvenil, incluido un evento de inicio con jóvenes aprendices actuales el 6 de mayo y un evento especial del Día de la Firma con nuevos jóvenes aprendices el 9 de mayo. Estos eventos destacaron carreras en una variedad de campos importantes para el éxito de los Estados Unidos, incluida la construcción, el transporte, la manufactura avanzada y la energía limpia, la educación, la ciberseguridad, la robótica y la atención médica. El aprendizaje juvenil es una estrategia de ganar y aprender que brinda a los jóvenes un camino hacia un buen trabajo y un impulso hacia una carrera bien remunerada. Bajo la administración Biden-Harris, se han atendido a más de 1,4 millones de aprendices, incluidos más de 541.000 nuevos jóvenes y adultos jóvenes de entre 16 y 24 años, según la Oficina de Aprendizaje del Departamento de Trabajo de EE. UU., la agencia gubernamental responsable de los programas de aprendizaje registrados.

Para obtener más información sobre la Semana del Aprendizaje Juvenil y cómo participar, visite Haga correr la voz en las redes sociales a través de #YAW2024 y #ApprenticeshipUSA.


Toys for Tots Provides Relief to Families Impacted by Hurricane Idalia

(NewsUSA) - Our Nation mourns for the communities of Northern Florida, where residents were so tragically affected by Hurricane Idalia. The Marine Toys for Tots Program recognizes that need extends far beyond the holiday season, and we stand ready to assist when hope and relief are needed most.

The families living in the counties of Taylor, Lafayette, and Suwannee have suffered devastating losses, and the financial and emotional fallout will be long lasting—especially for those without the means to recover. In order to provide comfort, emotional relief, and hope to these families, Toys for Tots plans to distribute toys, books, and other gifts to the children of these communities.

Toys for Tots is a year-round force for good, providing hope and emotional relief to families experiencing challenging circumstances. Our local Toys for Tots campaigns in Taylor, Lafayette, and Suwannee Counties are working together to ensure that the children who lost so much will be reminded that there is hope for a brighter tomorrow. Our Coordinators throughout the Nation work tirelessly from October-December to provide something tangible to economically disadvantaged children on Christmas morning.

However, we can’t anticipate when natural disasters will strike and are extremely fortunate to have our volunteer Coordinators who are ready, willing, and able to provide support on short notice.  They are rallying to provide assistance to the children of families who lost so much as a result of Hurricane Idalia.

Toys for Tots will be providing support to over 12,000 children throughout the three Northern Florida Counties. Our amazing Coordinators who oversee the campaigns near the affected areas are working together to organize distribution events through local organizations over the next few weeks.

“Over the past few years, families across our Nation have faced tremendous challenges, but the recent devastation caused by Hurricane Idalia has added to the severity of hardships that the families in the communities of Taylor, Lafayette, and Suwannee Counties must overcome,” said LtGen Jim Laster, USMC (Retired), CEO of the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation.

“The Marine Toys for Tots Program recognizes the need outside of the holiday season, and we want to do what we can to provide hope for these families and offer our assistance now,” he said. “We are extremely proud of our Coordinators who work beyond the holiday season and our network of nonprofit partners that are able to assist us in providing emotional relief to the children living in these Florida communities as soon as possible.” 

Marine Toys for Tots is a year-round force for good – because children need hope for a brighter tomorrow beyond the holiday season. To support the efforts to ease the suffering of families impacted by Hurricane Idalia and to support other year-round efforts, visit

La Oficina del Defensor aboga por condiciones seguras y humanas para todos los inmigrantes detenidos

(la Oficina del Defensor de Inmigrantes Detenidos) - La Oficina del Defensor de Inmigrantes Detenidos (OIDO) está aquí para ayudar a la comunidad de inmigrantes detenidos. La OIDO, una oficina independiente del Departamento de Seguridad Nacional (DHS) de EE. UU., se dedica a promover y apoyar condiciones seguras y humanas para las personas detenidas por motivos de inmigración. Como única entidad de supervisión del DHS centrada exclusivamente en la detención de inmigrantes, la OIDO cuenta con personal que visita regularmente las instalaciones para hablar con los detenidos sobre sus inquietudes. La Oficina también realiza inspecciones, ofrece recomendaciones y propone soluciones para mejorar las condiciones de detención de los inmigrantes.

La OIDO cuenta con un equipo de expertos médicos que evalúan los casos individuales y asesoran sobre cuestiones sistémicas y políticas. El equipo está formado por asistentes médicos, enfermeros titulados, psicólogos y farmacéuticos que trabajan junto a los administradores de casos e investigadores de OIDO.

La OIDO adopta un enfoque neutral para observar y analizar los asuntos relacionados con las condiciones de detención de inmigrantes, al tiempo que destaca los problemas de tratamiento de forma oportuna. La OIDO se basa en las inspecciones anunciadas y no anunciadas de un equipo de investigadores dedicados que visitan centros de detención tanto administrados por el gobierno como contratados de forma privada en todo el país. La Oficina también coloca administradores de casos en los centros de detención de todo el país para gestionar quejas que van desde necesidades físicas como el acceso a mantas, cepillos de dientes y mejoras en la calidad de la comida, hasta garantizar que los centros de detención ofrezcan acceso suficiente a personal médico, zonas de videoconferencia y bibliotecas jurídicas.

Cuando se recurre a la OIDO para que ayude con asuntos que requieren atención inmediata y que no han sido resueltos por el Servicio de Aduanas y Protección de Fronteras (CBP) de EE. UU. o el Servicio de Inmigración y Control de Aduanas (ICE), la OIDO puede llamar la atención adicional sobre estos asuntos.  Su trabajo puede dar lugar a una recomendación formal de mejora al Secretario del DHS, Alejandro Mayorkas, y al Congreso.

El año pasado, la OIDO emitió una Alerta al Defensor en relación con la falta crítica de personal médico de un contratista independiente en la frontera suroeste. Los expertos médicos de la OIDO colaboraron con la Oficina del Médico Jefe del CBP y con la Oficina de Servicios de Salud del DHS para abordar las deficiencias de la atención médica en todo el país, lo que se tradujo en índices de dotación de personal que han aumentado un 100% a nivel nacional este año.  Tras una minuciosa investigación, el informe final, Análisis de la OIDO: Contrato de apoyo médico del CBP para la frontera suroeste y Tucson (OIDO Review - CBP Medical Support Contract for Southwest Border and Tucson), se publicó en julio.

Cuando se levantó el Título 42 en mayo, la OIDO movilizó personal a la frontera sur y estuvo presente en muchos emplazamientos de la Patrulla Fronteriza, al tiempo que continuaba con su labor habitual de supervisión en los centros de detención de inmigrantes. “La OIDO está comprometida con garantizar las mejores condiciones posibles para quienes se encuentran en nuestro sistema de detención de inmigrantes”, declaró el Defensor de Inmigrantes Detenidos interino, David Gersten. “Posicionamos a los administradores de casos y a los investigadores de todo el país para que tengan un acceso fácil a las instalaciones del ICE y del CBP, lo que nos permite resolver los problemas de detención de forma proactiva y lo más rápidamente posible”.

Los altos directivos de la OIDO también participaron en estas observaciones. Un área de enfoque crítica fue el cuidado de los niños no acompañados y de las familias, junto con las instalaciones adecuadas, la higiene, el acceso y la calidad de los alimentos y el agua, el acceso a los servicios jurídicos y el manejo de los bienes personales.

Las personas detenidas deben sentirse seguras sabiendo que solicitar ayuda a un administrador de casos de la OIDO no afecta a su estatus migratorio. Deben empezar por pedir hablar con un administrador de casos de la OIDO en su centro o hacer que un representante rellene un Formulario de admisión de casos para cualquier asunto relacionado con su bienestar que no haya sido tratado.

En un caso reciente, un detenido solicitó ayuda a un administrador de casos de la OIDO, afirmando que no se le permitía acceder a la documentación relacionada con la inmigración que tenía en su poder cuando llegó por primera vez al centro. El individuo informó a la OIDO de que se habían hecho múltiples peticiones de los documentos, pero estos no habían sido devueltos. Según las Normas de Detención del ICE, los centros de detención de inmigrantes deben permitir a las personas detenidas acceder a su documentación legal personal. Con el apoyo del administrador de casos de la OIDO, que transmitió esta queja al personal del centro, el individuo recibió rápidamente su documentación.

Con la misión de servir como recurso neutral, objetivo y creíble para todos los afectados por la detención de inmigrantes, la OIDO seguirá identificando los procesos que no funcionan como deberían y trabajando para obtener resultados. Se estima que para finales de este año, la OIDO habrá abordado más de 20,000 casos sobre las condiciones de detención.

“Nuestro objetivo es seguir mejorando eficaz y rápidamente las condiciones en todos los centros de detención, al trabajar para mitigar los problemas y mejorar los procesos del ICE y el CBP”, dijo Gersten.

Para obtener más información sobre la OIDO o presentar una queja, visite



Ombudsman Office Champions Safe and Humane Immigration Detention Conditions for All

(the Office of the Immigration Detention Ombudsman) - The Office of the Immigration Detention Ombudsman (OIDO) is here to help the immigration detention community. OIDO, an independent office within the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), is dedicated to promoting and supporting safe and humane conditions for people being held in immigration detention. As the only DHS oversight entity solely focused on immigration detention, OIDO has staff who regularly visit facilities to speak with detained individuals about their concerns.  The Office also conducts inspections, provides recommendations, and proposes solutions to improve conditions in immigration detention.

OIDO has a team of medical experts that assess individual cases and advise on systemic and policy issues. The team is composed of physician assistants, registered nurses, psychologists, and pharmacists who work alongside OIDO’s case managers and investigators.

OIDO takes a neutral approach to observing and reviewing matters related to the conditions of immigration detention while calling attention to treatment issues in a timely manner. OIDO relies on announced and unannounced inspections from a team of dedicated investigators who visit both government-operated and privately contracted detention facilities throughout the country. The Office also places case managers within detention facilities across the country to handle complaints that range from physical needs such as access to blankets, toothbrushes, and improvements in food quality, to ensuring detention centers provide sufficient access to medical personnel, video conference areas, and law libraries.

When OIDO is called on to help with issues needing immediate attention that have not been resolved by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) or Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), OIDO can call additional attention to these matters.  Their work can lead to a formal recommendation for improvement to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas and Congress.

Last year, OIDO issued an Ombudsman Alert regarding an independent contractor’s critical medical understaffing at the Southwest border. OIDO’s medical experts worked with CBP’s Office of the Chief Medical Officer and DHS’s Office of Health Services to address medical care deficiencies nationwide, resulting in staffing rates that have increased 100 percent nationally this year.  Following a thorough investigation, the final report, OIDO Review -- CBP Medical Support Contract for Southwest Border and Tucson, was issued in July.

When Title 42 lifted in May, OIDO surged staff to the southern border and was present at many Border Patrol locations, while continuing its regular oversight work at immigration detention facilities. “OIDO is committed to ensuring the best possible conditions for those in our immigration detention system,” said acting Immigration Detention Ombudsman David Gersten. “We position case managers and investigators across the Nation to have easy access to ICE and CBP facilities, enabling us to resolve detention issues proactively and as fast as possible.”

OIDO senior leadership also participated in these observations. One critical focus area was the care of unaccompanied children and families, along with appropriate facilities, hygiene, access to and quality of food and water, access to legal services, and the handling of personal property.

People who are detained should feel confident knowing that requesting assistance from an OIDO case manager doesn’t affect their immigration status. They should start by asking to speak with an OIDO case manager in their facility or having a representative complete a Case Intake Form for any issue related to their well-being that has not been addressed.

In one recent instance, a detained person requested assistance from an OIDO case manager, stating that he was not granted access to immigration-related paperwork that was in his possession when he first arrived at the facility. The individual informed OIDO that multiple requests for the paperwork had been made, but the documents had not been returned. According to ICE’s Detention Standards, immigration detention facilities must allow detained people to access their personal legal material. With the support of the OIDO case manager who relayed this complaint to the facility staff, the individual promptly received his documentation.

With a mission to serve as a neutral, objective, credible resource for everyone impacted by immigration detention, OIDO will continue to identify processes that are not operating as they should and work toward results. OIDO is on track to address over 20,000 cases about detention conditions by the end of the year.

“Our goal is to continue to effectively and swiftly improve conditions in all detention facilities, by working to mitigate problems and enhance processes for ICE and CBP,” Gersten said.

To learn more about OIDO or file a complaint, visit


CME Group Gives Last Call for Registration in 20th Annual University Trading Challenge

(NewsUSA) - CME Group, the world’s leading derivatives marketplace, is reminding students that registration in its 20th Annual University Trading Challenge will remain open until Thursday, September 28 at 5 p.m., Central Time.

This year’s University Trading Challenge kicks off on Sunday, October 1 and concludes on Friday, October 27. Undergraduate and graduate students from colleges and universities around the world will be competing on student-lead teams, or in cooperation with a faculty advisor, to see who can best manage a variety of environmental, economic and other marketplace risks to protect their mock investment portfolio.      

"As we celebrate the 20th anniversary of our University Trading Challenge program, we are extremely proud of the role we play in educating up-and-coming professionals on the significant impact risk management can have on the economy, as well as on businesses and individuals globally," said Anita Liskey, Global Head of Brand Marketing and Communications at CME Group. "Through this engaging and competitive trading simulation, thousands of students around the world have been able to compete against each other, while learning about futures markets and the importance of hedging."

During the month-long competition, students will experience the energy, excitement, disappointments and daily challenges of a real-world trading environment on a simulated, professional trading platform provided by CQG. They will also receive education, market-related data and news, including live updates from Dow Jones newsfeeds and The Hightower Report, that will test their abilities to evaluate and react to changing market dynamics in real-time.

Each eligible member of the winning team will receive a $2,000 cash prize*. Additional prizes will be awarded for second through fifth place.

Student participants will also have the opportunity to attend CME Group’s Day of Market Education. This one-day forum will provide them with an exclusive look into CME Group and the derivatives industry.     

More than 500 teams of nearly 2,000 students from 23 countries participated in last year's University Trading Challenge, with the winning team coming from Mexico's Universidad Anahuac UG. 

CME Group is committed to educating the next generation of finance professionals on the significance of global derivatives markets and risk management. In addition to interactive events like the University Trading Challenge, CME Group also partners with other industry organizations to offer broad educational tools, such as Futures Fundamentals, a one-stop educational resource that explains the role of futures markets in everyday life. The goal of the site is to make financial education an engaging experience for anyone, regardless of how well versed they are in the world of finance.

To register and view details on eligibility, rules, regulations and requirements, please visit:

For social media updates throughout the competition, make sure to follow #TradingChallenge2023.

*Eligibility to receive competition prizes is only open to residents in the United States (US), Canada (CA) excluding Quebec, United Kingdom (UK), Germany (DE), Netherlands (NL), Switzerland (CH), Republic of Korea (KR), Taiwan (TW), and Japan (JP).

Tips For Traveling to Music Festivals on a Budget

(NewsUSA) - Summer is peak season for music festivals and concerts, and fans are road tripping from coast to coast to experience their favorite artists live. But costs can add up quick.  

Country breakout sensation Mackenzie Carpenter and Chicago-based pop-punk group Action/Adventure share five tips for fans traveling to summer festivals on a budget:

  1. Make a Budget: Before heading out for your music adventure, it helps to make a budget prioritizing what matters most – every dollar counts! To help save on costs, Carpenter and Action/Adventure opt for the My6 Music Package, which offers artists and their crews 10% off stays and access to 50 discounts on music-related services from video streaming and sound equipment, gas, snacks and more, available through Oct. 31. Fans can also receive 6% off stays through the free My6 program, plus hundreds of additional discounts.
  2. Identify Affordable Lodging: After a music-filled day, it’s important to have a clean, comfortable and affordable place to rest and recover. Carpenter chooses economy lodging brands Motel 6 and Studio 6 as her go-to lodging options, as they have 1,400 locations across the U.S. and Canada.
  3. Bring Your Own Snacks: Food and drinks are expensive inside concert grounds, so packing your own can help save your wallet. Carpenter chooses to bring a reusable water bottle to reduce costs on one-time use water bottles inside the festival, and Action/Adventure members suggest bringing a cooler to keep food cold. Check out the festival's policies on outside food and drinks to ensure compliance!
  4. Seek Out Ticket Promotions: Keep an eye out for discounted tickets through official channels or reputable ticket resale platforms. Taking advantage of these promotions can allow for more to be spent inside the venue, and Action/Adventure even suggests looking into volunteer opportunities that provide access to the concert.
  5. Use Public Transportation or Carpool: When available, Action/Adventure opts for public transportation to get to and from the venue, as it's usually cheaper than driving. If driving is necessary, consider carpooling or using rideshare services with friends to split costs.

For additional information on the My6 Music program and how to become a free My6 Member, visit to start saving today!

Scuba's Therapeutic Potential

(NewsUSA) - When scuba diving instructor Jim Elliott first started teaching individuals with physical disabilities in 1997, he intuitively realized that diving also had therapeutic benefits for individuals with autism, down syndrome and other cognitive and learning impairments.

Twenty-six years later, team members of Diveheart, the non-profit founded by Elliott in 2001, were invited to address physicians from the Mayo Clinic on the subject of adaptive scuba and scuba therapy. At a conference in Cozumel, Mexico, Elliott and Diveheart Executive Director Tinamarie Hernandez spoke to physicians from a range of medical specialties including hyperbaric medicine, neurology, and sports medicine. The Mayo group was so impressed with the Diveheart presentation that they invited Elliott and Hernandez to return for a 2024 conference.  

Even better, physicians from the Mayo Clinic proposed a collaboration between their researchers and the Diveheart team on scuba therapy research using enriched air and one hundred percent oxygen at safe depths while measuring the benefits different gas mixtures and hyperbaric pressure.

In the Mayo presentation, the Diveheart team also suggested measuring the benefits of various medication levels in tandem with different levels of oxygen underwater in a zero-gravity environment.

“If we know what a certain medication does at the surface or one atmosphere of pressure, researchers can begin looking into what the same medication will do under the influence of increased pressure and various percentages of oxygen enriched air,” Elliott explains.

Looking ahead, Diveheart hopes to facilitate similar research projects at a unique deep warm water therapy pool and aquatic facility that they seek to build in the greater Chicago area. Diveheart has secured two patents on pool’s design.

Diveheart aims to leverage decades of scuba therapy research with the practical adaptive scuba experiences it has helped develop since 2001 and partner with university medical centers to create a facility that will draw researchers, scientists, therapists, physicians, and others from around the world. Visit for more information and to follow their progress.

She Shares Her Utility Savings Secret In A Video

(NewsUSA) - The local power company in Boise, Idaho, offered a monthly billing credit for residential customers who allowed them to remotely control their central air conditioning (A/C) system on a few weekdays when summer demand for energy exceeded the utility’s capacity.

The opportunity created a difficult decision for homeowner Amanda Reed since she would like to reduce the amount of energy the home used for air conditioning, but during the summer months the home had hot spots that made it uncomfortable without keeping the AC system on high during the hottest periods of the day.

Her home faces the Boise River and is subject to many days of direct sun exposure as well as reflection of sunlight off the water. The area experiences the full range of seasons with temperatures from 24 degrees to 95 degrees and more.

PhotoAfter visiting the website for the non-profit International Window Film Association (, she decided to investigate having window film installed to upgrade the existing windows.  

Using the local dealer locator on the website, Amanda arranged for an installer  to come to her home and provide an assessment. Based on that visit, it was decided to have solar control window film installed to help solve the issues, while also keeping the home's large dual-pane windows that were original to the home.

"The power company often asks us if we can turn up our thermostats in the summer so we're not using so much. I can already tell we'll have an easier time reducing our power and just being friendly with the environment," said homeowner Amanda Reed.

The nonprofit International Window Film Association (IWFA) is making available a short video of the installation of window film on this beautiful home located along the Boise River Greenbelt.

"Cooling systems often work harder during the hottest period of the day when peak electric rates are charged, and when utilities may be unable to meet the demand,” said Darrell Smith, executive director of the IWFA. "Window films are proven to provide a more comfortable environment and reduce energy use," he added.

The IWFA conservatively estimates professionally installed window film may cut a dwelling’s annual energy use by 5-10 percent and prevent 60-80 percent of solar heat gain through glass from entering the home, depending on your local climatic conditions and your home’s current physical specifications. To learn more visit

10 Pool Opening Tips for Swim Season 2023

(David Van Brunt) - With Memorial Day and the official start of summer upon us, it's time to get pools prepped for the swim season. However, as eager as you are to jump in, opening a pool is more complicated than simply removing the cover and topping off the water level.

The steps to get your pool ready for swim season range in complexity depending on your location. If you live in a cold winter climate and fully or partially winterize your pool, the pool opening process can take up to two days. So be patient and plan accordingly.

Following the right procedures is important to keeping the water safe, protecting swimmers, and preventing damage to the pool and equipment. Always carefully read and follow product label instructions, which include details for correct handling, storage, dosing, and application. Remember to never mix chemicals and allow ample time between different chemical applications.

Here are the 10 steps to follow when opening your pool in the spring:

  1. Eliminate excess water with a submersible cover pump then remove pool cover. Chances are that a fair amount of water and debris have built up on the cover over the winter, which makes it difficult to remove. We recommend using a submersible cover pump to drain the water off the cover before removing it. It’s best to use two people to remove the cover because it’s heavy and can spill debris into the pool.
  2. Store pool cover. After removing the cover, lay it flat and brush off any remaining water or debris. Let it dry. Before folding it, sprinkle it with Leslie’s Alkalinity Up or talcum powder to prevent mold and mildew. Fold the cover loosely, but carefully, to avoid rips. Store it in a cool, dry place, like a basement, garage, or storage shed to keep the cover in good condition for years to come.
  3. Remove winterizing plugs and replace drain plugs. If you use winterizing plugs to protect pool plumbing during the coldest months, now is the time to remove them from the pool inlets and outlets. If you used antifreeze to winterize the suction plumbing, discharge this to waste or backwash the filter to remove it. You can also use a wet-dry vacuum to remove antifreeze. If the water level is below the skimmer, add water to raise the level to normal (around halfway up the opening of the skimmer). Inspect and reinstall the drain plugs in your pump, filter, heater, etc.
  4. Prepare pool equipment. Reconnect the equipment you disconnected before the winter season, including the pool filter, pump, heater, automatic pool cleaner, in-line chlorinators, and any other devices. Then reattach any ladders, handrails, or other accessories. Lubricate O-rings, gaskets, and hardware with a silicone lubricant to keep them watertight. Once the pump is primed, set it to run continuously until startup is complete. Inspect the equipment for cracks or leaks and replace or repair, if necessary.
  5. Remove and prevent metal stains. Metals like copper and iron can build up over the winter and cause staining. One dose of Leslie’s NoMetal neutralizes the metals and prevents further staining of the walls and floor. It also prevents water discoloration caused by high metal content. If you notice any staining, you can treat the stain and remove any metals in the pool water with a CuLator No-Drain Metal Stain Kit.
  6. Test pool water. It’s important to test your water chemistry before adding any chemicals to know what’s needed and in what amounts. This can be done with a home test kit or by bringing a pool water sample into a store that tests pool water, such as Leslie’s, which offers a free AccuBlue 10-point water test and customized treatment plan in just 60 seconds.
  1. Balance water, start with Total Alkalinity. Once you’ve tested the water, it’s time to add balancing chemicals to adjust the chemistry. Always follow product label instructions. Keep your pump running at high speed until the chemical is fully integrated into the water, which can take four hours or longer. If your pool water is cloudy, running your pool pump continuously for 24–48 hours will help to clear it up. Don’t worry, your pool pump is designed to run 24/7 if needed.

Never mix chemicals or add more than one at a time. When balancing the water, always begin with Total Alkalinity, since it has a direct impact on pH levels. To raise your Alkalinity, add Leslie's Alkalinity Up or Soda Ash. To lower the Alkalinity if it is high, add Leslie’s Dry Acid or Muriatic Acid. Note that these adjustments will raise or lower the pH, as well as the Alkalinity.

Once Total Alkalinity has returned to a range of 80–120 ppm, adjust the other chemistry levels. Test the pH level again since it likely changed after the Total Alkalinity adjustment. The recommended water balance ranges are as follows:

  • Total Alkalinity: 80–120 ppm
  • pH: 7.4–7.8
  • Free Available Chlorine: 1–4 ppm
  • Calcium Hardness: 200–400 ppm
  • Cyanuric Acid: 30–100 ppm
  1. Brush and vacuum the pool. Thoroughly brush and vacuum the pool surfaces before shocking the pool water. This removes algae and bacteria from the walls and floor and lets the chlorine work most efficiently. Start brushing at the shallow end and move to the deep end. If possible, vacuum the debris directly to waste (if applicable) as this reduces strain on the pool filter. If you do this, replace any water that is lost. If you are not able to vacuum to waste, cleaning your pool filter after vacuuming up any dirt or algae is essential to a successful pool opening. 
  2. Shock the pool. This is the final step for removing germs, algae spores, and other microorganisms. Shocking your pool is simply a term for raising the chlorine level, sometimes as high as 20–30 ppm. It is an important step if there is algae present in your pool; when present, algae quickly uses up chlorine in the water. Shocking your pool will ensure that your algae treatment is successful. Add the recommended dose of your chlorine product for your pool size to raise the chlorine level to 20-30 ppm. Run the pump for 24 hours, then test the Free Available Chlorine level to ensure it is in the 1–4 ppm range. If the level is at zero, repeat the shock process until your pool water can hold chlorine. Once you shock a pool, you must wait until the chlorine level drops below 4 ppm before swimming again. There are new products available today that reduce the wait time.  For example, this chlorine-free oxidizing shock has a wait time of just 15 minutes, and is ideal for routine oxidation in pools with optimal Free Available Chlorine levels.
  3. Treat the water with algaecide, clarifier, and phosphate remover. After shocking the pool, run the circulation system overnight, then add algaecide the next day. Follow product directions on the algaecide product you are using. A dose of clarifier will clear up any haze, and weekly use of a phosphate remover will help prevent algae from starting. Depending on the condition of your pool, you may also need to backwash or clean your pool filter again. To help with making maintenance easy all season long, try Leslie's Perfect Weekly or PoolRx+ to help prevent algae in your pool.

Important Note: It’s crucial to use pool chemicals, specifically sanitizers and algaecides, that have been tested and approved by the U.S. EPA, which is the federal agency that protects people and the environment from significant health risks, sponsors and conducts research, as well as develops and enforces environmental regulations. See this blog post for simple instructions on reading pool product labels for the proper EPA details.

Follow these 10 steps and your pool will be ready for the swim season kickoff. For pool owners in warmer regions who do not close their pool, you’ll execute an abbreviated version of these steps with a focus on steps 4–10, as needed. Then, inflate the pool toys and haul out the lounge chairs. Remember, following a regular pool maintenance program will help you avoid any expensive equipment or water balancing issues and let you get the most enjoyment out of your pool this summer. 

David Van Brunt is the owner of Swimming Pool Learning and a pool service professional with over 30 years of experience. He created the No. 1 swimming pool channel on YouTube and hosts the “Pool Guy Podcast” and is also a Leslie’s Pool Pro Partner.

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