Feng shui, the ancient Chinese practice of harmonizing individuals with their surroundings, strongly recommends running water for health and relaxation and now lucky pool owners can easily get into the flow of things this season with the addition of a water feature for their pool.

A new water feature takes an already spectacular backyard environment and ramps it up a notch. 
Many pool owners install water features for the delightful ambiance they create as well as for their aesthetic beauty.

Water features come in every shape and size and there is one to fit all budgets. There are tiny water features that allow a small stream of water to drip from a tipped pot near the pool garden, to bold, audacious water features that can dominate the pool and still others that are simply magical. Adding to that magic are special LED lighting effects to turn water flowing red, orange, yellow or blue into a rainbow of color and rhythm to keep the beat of hot music on a cool night around the pool.

Here are some of the more popular water features to consider for your pool this season:

Waterfalls.
  One all-time favorite water feature is the waterfall that flows mysteriously from the side of the pool, a nearby rock wall or spills effortlessly from boulders grouped near the pool’s edge. Waterfalls often tumble in front of a hidden grotto, complete with benches and even a sound system.  Sheer walls of water take the waterfall to a high art by creating a clear-water arc that falls almost silently, delicately and perfectly into the pool below.

Waterfalls can be added after the pool is finished, and a pool professional from NESPA can best advise you on this. However, if you are currently in the planning stages for a new pool, consider adding a waterfall now to the project. Build a vanishing edge pool and your waterfall is built right into the project. You can add a variety of other types of waterfalls as well, usually at little extra cost because the accessory can be tied into the existing water lines as the project is being built.

Fountains.
Swimming pool fountains are another frequent addition to pools and come in every imaginable shape and size. There are small, free-floating fountains that bounce on the surface of aboveground pools spewing water in the air to the delight of all to magnificent carved and polished Italian marble fountains.

Deck jets and bubblers.
Deck jets and bubblers add their own amusement to the pool setting. Deck jets can be turned on a 360-degree radius and aimed at the spa, pool, sun shelf or to make mischief anywhere around the pool.  Bubblers are a perfect touch for the pool steps, sun shelf or beach entry. Bubbler systems that come with their own LED lighting will put on a spectacular light show after the sun goes down.

Spill-over spas.
The spill-over spa and hot tub are water features that add their own excitement to an afternoon of pool activities. In the evening, combine the spill-over sights and sounds of water with lights and fire to take the chill out of any late-night party.

Slides.
The slide is a many splendored thing rising above the pool often with a stream (or flood) of water adding speed to every laughing body that careens down it and splashes into the pool. Today’s slides can range from an 8-foot to a 13-foot fiberglass beauty or it can be a custom slide of 36 feet or longer. Straight slides take up a lot of space. For a smaller pool and yard, consider a curved slide.

Interested in adding a new water feature to your pool this year? Visit the Northeast Spa and Pool Association's member locator at NESPA’s website -- http://www.northeastspapool.org/nespaMemberLocator/ -- to find a pool professional near you. These professionals will not only help you select the best water feature for your pool, but they are ready to answer any question you may have about the care and maintenance of an existing pool or the latest design and technological features being added to new pools.