Pool School

Matt Giovanisci’s ‘Swim University’ website puts water care into laymen’s terms, promotes fun above all else

Swim University does not offer a four-year degree or doctorate; no sheepskin is earned and there are no football tryouts. Instead, Swim University offers a flood of knowledge from its founder and creator, Matt Giovanisci. If it has to do with the operation of your pool, Giovanisci’s media-rich and enlightening website, swimuniversity.com, probably has a deceptively simple answer for you. His ability to distill pool water science into common,

everyday language makes pool maintenance look easy.

Giovanisci interest in the pool business was fostered after landing a job at a local pool-supply store in his hometown of Williamstown, N.J. He was 13 then, and took the job to earn money to buy baseball cards. By 16, he was store manager. (Talk about career trajectory.)

Entering his 20’s, Giovanisci briefly ventured into other interests (he’s also an award-winning web developer, graphic artist, musician and filmmaker). His return to the pool and spa scene came by way of various corporate positions. His alter ego, The Pool and Hot Tub Professor, materialized in 2007 upon his founding of Swim University. Once online, he rapidly established himself as a trusted information resource in the arena of pool and hot tub care.

Giovanisci’s passion for pools is steeped in the

pleasure they symbolize for pool owners. “I fell in love with everything pools because in my world swimming pools are a really fun product,” Giovanisci says. “They say once you’re in the pool business you never really get out of it, and that’s always been the case with me.”

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Thanks to his unabashed love of pools, Giovanisci has positioned himself as a staunch advocate for those who own one. He doesn’t get bogged down in the why; instead, he uses the pool experience itself in his answers: Ask Giovanisci about why shock-treating a pool relieves algae issues and he responds, “You don’t shock treat because you have an algae problem, you do it so you can go swimming. No one wants to be a backyard chemist.”

He minces no words — and his passion, knowledge and expertise has enticed vast cyber-inhabitants to his web campus. That’s not to say The Professor hasn’t stepped on a flip-flop a time or two. “I get nasty emails from time to time from people in the industry.”

Loggerheads aside, SwimUniversity.com has evolved into a college of pool and spa knowledge, without bogging visitors down with scientific terminology and molecular graphs. “It’s all laymen’s terms,” Giovanisci says, “I felt like there was nowhere online that made this super-simple; text isn’t really simple. But if you saw a video or info graphic, now it makes sense to the average person.”

Giovanisci also offers advice and product reviews; plus guides to shock a pool, fix a cloudy pool, hosting the ultimate pool party and more. There is also the free downloadable eBook, “25 Money-Saving Ideas for Your Swimming Pool.”

The Swim University site reflects Giovanisci’s understanding of, and respect for, his audience. They come for problem-solving information and stay for the shared insight on how to have fun in their pool or spa. “No one subscribes to my site because they want to learn how to clean a pool,” Giovanisci says. “People want to know the best way to utilize their pool and have fun,” he says. “Are there games I can play with the kids? Are there new floats available? It’s the fun part; that’s what they’re subscribing to. People find me because of the technical parts of pool ownership and stay for the lifestyle parts.”

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