Creating the perfect outdoor space is a matter of making choices that benefit your desired lifestyle. Gourmet cooks may want an al fresco kitchen, while entertainers may need an expansive seating area. This is also the case when you are deciding on the perfect pool to add to your backyard living space. The design, look, and size are where most homeowners begin their focus, but the pool depth is also important, especially if you have young children or pets.

Not every depth of the pool is conducive to your expected activities, and most pools have a shallow end and a deeper end to allow for different levels of swimmers to enjoy the pool simultaneously. Today, we will discuss how deep you should design your pool based on your unique situation. Designing and having an inground pool built on your property is a significant undertaking, so you want to make sure to get it right the first time.

Different Activities Require Different Pool Depths

What you and your family intend to do in your swimming pool will be the driving factor in how deep you make your pool. The biggest concern with deep pools is the danger they can pose to young children or poor swimmers. Florida, in fact, has laws that require adequate protections be put in place to prevent accidental drownings of children, which most homeowners comply with by installing pool gates or pool covers when not in use.

Pool depths of 3-4 or lower are generally considered ‘shallow’ and not conducive to other activities like swimming laps or diving. These depths allow elementary-aged children to feel confident swimming without being in excessive danger. People who want to enjoy the pool without treading water can also relax in these areas and share in the fun. If a pool is longer on one side than the other, the most common design is to place the shallow portion of the pool at one end and the deeper end on the other, with a gradual slope between them. This, however, is not the best layout for pools with the primary purpose of swimming for exercise.

If you and your family want to swim laps in the pool for recreation or exercise, having a shallow portion of the pool can pose a real risk of injury to your hands, knees, and legs. When you focus on swimming laps, stopping to think about the depth of the water below you and how much room you have to move your arms and legs is a recipe for disaster. The best design for this purpose would be an elongated pool without a shallow end or a pool with a unique design that has a shallow portion while still providing an uninterrupted pathway of deeper water to allow for swimming laps and diving. 

While a gradual slope from shallow to deep end is the usual way that inground pools are designed, you can also utilize a sun shelf design to accommodate both types of swimmers. A sun shelf is a long, narrow ledge near the side of a pool that offers kids a place to safely enjoy the water and adults an area to lounge around in while staying cool. In this design, most of the pool is deep, meaning the sun shelf is the only area in which younger kids or poor swimmers can stay.

Choosing the perfect depth for your pool is arguably the most essential part of any pool design. If your pool isn’t deep enough to allow you to enjoy all the activities you have planned, it doesn’t matter how sleek or beautiful the design is.

When it comes to the perfect outdoor living space, the design experts at West Coast Design Build Florida can help turn your outdoor living space dream into a reality.