A recent Irish study, released by the Department of
Pediatrics at University College Cork found a link between
years spent swimming and the development of asthma in 121
boys. A greater occurrence of the condition was found in
boys who began swimming around age 5 and swam in indoor,
chlorinated pools about once a week.
The authors believe the introduction of organic
materials such as sweat or urine into chlorinated water may
create a setting conducive to asthma development.
Another report, released last year in the British
Journal of Sports Medicine notes that nearly all of 50
elite swimmers studied had inflamed lung tissue. All the
cases began after they took up swimming, and those that
spent more time in the pool had more damage. 70 percent of
swimmers surveyed for the European Respiratory Journal
suffered from airway hyper-responsiveness, a precursor to
asthma. These cases are attributed to indoor pool
environments and chloramine exposure.