Eric Herman
A writer/editor with 32 years experience covering a wide range of business, technical, scientific and cultural topics, Eric joined the AQUA staff in August 2011 following 12 years as editor and co-founder of WaterShapes Magazine. He now serves as AQUA's senior editor. He can be reached at
  • Wednesday, December, 21, 2016 An Age of Design

    When we talk about "design," what are we really talking about?

    Naturally, the answer varies on the type of design being considered and certainly the person answering the question. Plus, there's always the "eye of beholder" principle: One person's idea of great design might to another look like an...

  • Tuesday, November, 29, 2016 ‘Blue Mind’: An Exploration of the Benefits of Being Near Water

    We all know that human beings have an innate love of water, but do we really know why? Is it that our bodies are comprised mostly of water, or is it because the earth’s surface is nearly three quarters aquatic? Or is it something else?

    In what should arguably be required reading for those of us in the aquatics industries, author Wallace J. Nichols, a marine biologist, offers a wonderfully comprehensive analysis of those questions in “

  • Tuesday, October, 25, 2016 Inside Chlorine's Staying Power

    For all of the criticism and market pressure brought to bear on traditional chlorination, proponents point out that despite popular concerns and a spectrum of available alternatives, chlorine has remained indispensable for many professionals and consumers alike — a fact that is not likely to change anytime soon.

    In 1908, Jersey City, N.J., became the first city in the U.S. to apply full-scale chlorination to its drinking water. Within a few short years, other major cities including...

  • Tuesday, October, 18, 2016 Should Pool Builders Move Up Their Marketing Efforts?

    By most all accounts, the summer of 2016 will be remembered as one of the busiest and hottest the industry has experienced in a long time, at least since before the recession.

    In speaking with builders over the summer (that is, the ones who had the time and energy to talk to yours truly), they consistently...

  • Wednesday, October, 12, 2016 Aquatic Freedom For Children with Special Needs

    For most of us, aquatic exercise and recreation represents a healthful and often pleasurable respite from the rigors of daily life. For people with with disabilities, however, time spent in water can mean much more.

    In the words of Jodi Powell, aquatic instructor for children with disabilities, the water represents nothing less than freedom — “aquatic freedom” to be exact. I came across

  • Monday, October, 03, 2016 Pool Industry Expo Celebrates Its 30th Edition

    Pool Industry Expo celebrated its 30th installment in Monterey, Calif., Sept. 29 to Oct. 1, with a downsized show floor but enthusiastic attendance.

    Although this year’s show was confined to a compressed exhibit layout, due to an in-progress expansion of the Monterey Conference Center, organizers reported strong attendance of 4,513. Because...

  • Monday, September, 19, 2016 Outdoor Showers: A Missed Opportunity for Industry Pros?

    Since we're devoting the vast majority of the September issue of AQUA to all things hot watery, I thought it might be useful to consider an aspect of the subject that is rarely a big topic of conversation amongst aquatic professionals, although perhaps it should be: the outdoor shower.

    It's an interesting disconnect, the way the...

  • Monday, September, 19, 2016 The Enduring Appeal of Wooden Hot Tubs

    If you know anything about the history of portable spas, you know wooden barrel hot tubs helped launch the modern hot water industry. Yet with advent of composite materials, fancy hydrotherapy jet arrays, ergonomic designs and control technology, the popularity of the wooden barrel tub has since waned — or has it?


  • Thursday, September, 15, 2016 Defining an Age of Wellness: A Conversation with Alice Cunningham

    By any definition, Alice Cunningham is a one of the hot-tub industry's true pioneers. For nearly 40 years, she has led the company she and her husband founded, Olympic Hot Tubs, based in Seattle, to become one of the industry's vanguard...

  • Tuesday, September, 13, 2016 The Beautiful World of Pool & Spa Combos

    Many years ago, in the early days of what was then known as Genesis 3, co-founder Skip Phillips of Questar Pools was delivering a lecture about water-in-transit design. Part of his discussion centered on what he saw as the lack of creativity and design ingenuity when it comes to attached spas.

    Paraphrasing, he explained it was a shame so many builders simply create unimaginative vessels that, his words, "indiscriminately puke water" from the spa into the pool. A rather vivid...