Correctly choosing the depth of the pool is one of those aspects that will determine the success of the final result along with the orientation of the pool.
However, once the bather begins to use the pool, he discovers that the functionality of the pool is another relevant factor. Because, no matter how aesthetic a pool may be, if we cannot give it the use we expected, we will only have achieved 50% success.
Before going into detail, you must bear in mind that the depth of the pool is not the same as the height of the water, since there is usually a distance of approximately 10 cm between the water and the upper edge of the pool, unless that it is an infinity pool, in which the water reaches the upper edge and overflows around the perimeter. Don’t confuse them!
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Factors to take into account when choosing the depth of the pool
Choosing the depth of a pool will depend on many different factors, so you must consider them all separately to choose correctly.
If you are a builder, you should not assume the same depth for all clients, since each project has different users and different needs.
On the contrary, if you are the end user, you should consider that, if you have different homes, in one pool you can choose a depth and in the other pool a different depth, since they may be homes with different uses. For example: a pool in house A to use in summer when the family comes and another pool in house B to use as a couple the rest of the year.
With that being said, let’s see what those factors are!
If you have a lot of space to build your pool, you can design a large pool. This means that, having a very long pool, you can choose any type of bottom for your pool. For example, if you decide on the bottom in the shape of a “U” you would have enough space on both sides to give footing.
However, if your pool is medium or short in length, you should prioritize the area where the foot is reached and opt for flatter bottoms.
Consider how you will use your pool before designing it. If it is a pool for public use, you will have to follow the strict regulations in force and you will not have many options to choose from.
If, on the other hand, it is a private pool, we recommend that you study very carefully what functionality you are going to give it: for children to splash around, to lie down and rest inside, to swim, for children and adults to jump into, for let children play in the water, etc.
We know that it is difficult to opt for a use. Try to differentiate if the use will be by the elderly or combined (adults and children). That will give you the key.
It is very important that you determine, in addition to the use, what type of users will frequent it. In this sense, the height of the people is a very determining factor, not only to choose the depth but to place, for example, hydromassage jets, if you wanted them.
For example, the depth of a swimming pool for family use could be between:
- A flat bottom between 1m and 1.40m
- A bottom with a beach entry from 20 to 40 cm. and a slight percentage of slope to the flat bottom of max 1.40m.
- A platform with a depth of 20 to 40 cm. and then steps (either central or both sides) and a flat bottom between 1.20m and 1.50m
The accessories you have in the pool, such as springboards or slides, also come into play.
In general, it is not advisable to install diving boards or slides outside the pool, due to the danger they entail. However, if you choose to install a springboard, keep in mind that the depth you need will depend on how far the springboard is from the surface of the water. For example, if the springboard is 1 m. from the surface, the depth should be at least 2.5m.
Types of funds
Once you have studied all the variables that come into play when choosing the depth of your pool, you should opt for a type of bottom.
Keep in mind that if you are going to build your pool from scratch and you are going to build a built-in pool, your builder will be able to advise you and make a personalized pool, for example, adapting the percentage of inclination or depth to your specific needs.
Flat Bottom Pool
In recent times this type of fund is gaining many followers.
It is a bottom with the same depth for the entire pool, which usually ranges between 1.20m and 1.60m.
Its main advantage is that it can be used both for leisure / recreation and standing up without difficulty, in the same way that it allows swimming.
Its disadvantage is the lack of a platform for the pool, that is, a shallow area for loungers / play for the little ones .
Sloped Bottom Pool
There are different options. Years ago, the tendency was to build an entrance stairway, after which there was a flat area and then the slope began.
Currently, the trend is focused on more organic and functional designs in which it begins with a shallow beach entrance (25-40 cm), then a maximum inclination of 8% is added up to a depth of 60 cm and finally the inclination is increased up to 10% reaching the desired depth, which is usually between 1.40 m. and 1.60 m.
This type of bottom has the advantage that it is safer for children and adults and is compatible with a shallow area for pool furniture that is located in the water.
In this case, there would be no disadvantage, except for choosing a bottom that is too deep (for young users) or too short (for older users, who are going to jump into the water from outside).
This type of design has an inclination at the beginning of the pool until it reaches an area of maximum depth, which can range from 1.5 m. and 1.60m. depending on the factors mentioned above.
An advantage of this type of pool is that it is suitable for users of all ages, since depending on the height or use, they can be placed either on the ramp at a low height or in the deep part.
As a disadvantage, we would highlight that the entrance area can be too deep for smaller children and, at certain times, it can be too crowded if the majority of users are children. With which the functionality of the pool could be compromised.
This other design is similar to the bottom of the spoon, but with the particularity that it would have a foot on both sides and the deepest part would be left in the center.
It would only be recommended for very long pools in which enough space could be left on both sides for standing, since, otherwise, it would happen as in the previous bottom, and at times with a large number of bathers, it could be very tiring.
Ideal depth for a family pool
Based on our experience in the design and construction of swimming pools and weighing both the functional and the aesthetic aspects, the ideal depth for a family pool should be at the deepest part of 1.4m. at 1.6m. depending on the height and type of users.
In general, we recommend you opt for a beach or platform entrance since, in this way, you will be able to provide the project with greater functionality, both for the safe play of the little ones and for the enjoyment of the older ones, sunbathing in a shallow area of water.