Located in northwestern New Jersey, this Y branch is all about aquatic exercise and therapy. The warm-water pool is shallow enough for water walking, aqua-fitness classes and learn-to-swim programming. To enable universal access, a portable chair lift can be fit into any one of 17 stanchions around the pool.

Perhaps the most unique aquatic activity area is the Aqua Cube. Located adjacent to the warm-water pool, it is a 3.5-foot-deep space designed specifically for aquatic rehab and circuit training classes.

It's equipped with parallel bars, ballet bars, strength training equipment and an underwater bike. A state-of the-art hydraulic treadmill is coming soon.

This area can accommodate any level of disability, any type of rehab client, and all levels of fitness for aquatic personal training. It's used by members and rented out to local hospitals, physical therapy businesses, and special needs schools. 

With the recent addition of the warm-water pool and Aqua Cube, West Morris has spent the past several years developing a comprehensive program for aqua- fitness/aquatic rehab.

The Y hired and trained new staffers, added aqua-fitness classes to the schedule, and gave seminars explaining the benefits of water training.

Currently, there are three AEA- and ATRI-certified aquatic rehab specialists on staff, and the facility has partnerships within the community.

All aquatic areas, including a competition pool and spa, maintain separate environments, HVAC and filtration systems. The facility also uses ultraviolet disinfection and air quality control.

Furthermore, management is considering regenerative media filters, variable-frequency drives and indoor pool covers.

Best Practices

Filling daytime guard hours is difficult for many operators. At West Morris, members often are recruited.

Strong swimmers seen regularly in the pool during daylight hours are likely to be approached about becoming lifeguards.


“The careful planning in the West Morris expansion was evident. I love the variety of programming.”


  • 25-meter, 6-lane competition pool, maintained at 82 degrees

25-yard, 3-lane shallow, warm-water pool, maintained at 88 degrees

  • Aqua Cube features state-of-the art aquatic rehab/training equipment
  • A custom-built, 12-person spa, maintained at 102 degrees, with dual level jets, three distinct seating areas and four bubble benches
  • A custom-built, 15-person, glass-enclosed steam room, maintained at 118 degrees, with a multilevel seating area
  • A glass-enclosed lifeguard break room with a view of both pools   A built-in sound system with waterproof wireless microphones in both pools