How long should a lap pool be?

This blog post looks at an increasingly popular type of swimming pool, the lap pool. Due to their size and shape, they differ from the standard domestic swimming pool. These pools are generally designed for health and fitness use, rather than simply for fun. This means that the length of the pool is very much the main requirements, as opposed to width and depth. So how long should a lap pool be?

What are lap pools?

Lap pools are often designed as a long and narrow rectangle, ideal for those people who want to swim laps (hence the name). Theses pools are mainly used by swimmers who want to exercise privately as part of their daily routine. Their compact size are ideal for small gardens where space is at a premium. A lap pool is cheaper to maintain than a standard pool because due to the lower water volume and the amount of materials needed to build it.

In addition to the rectangular design, L-shaped lap pools are also popular. It has the advantages of being able to fit in more awkward spaces as well as providing space for people to relax away from the main lap swimming part of the pool. It is also easier to maximise the space surrounding the pool, allowing deck chairs and other furniture to be positioned close to it.  

Some lap pools have a wave machine fitted that creates an artificial current in the pool. Against this flow of water, the swimmer does not have to move forward or turn at the end of the pool. Instead, he/she can focus on improving technique and stamina.

The length of a lap pool

There is no ‘correct’ size for a lap pool, but there should be enough space to swim laps without having to turn too many times. Therefore, a pool measuring 12 metres (40 foot) in length is enough for the swimmer to enjoy a good workout. Anything lower will become less practical for swimming laps. This length allows the swimmer to turn easily.

The width of a pool should also be taken into consideration, as it can impact how easy it is to swim in the pool. This is due to the turbulence that is created when the water pushed to the side by the swimmer is deflected back. To help lessen this effect and allow space for more than one swimmer, a general width of around 2.5 metres is common in these cases. The pool should also be deep enough to stop you from catching your feet on the bottom, so plan for a metre or so in depth.

If you have any further questions on lap pools and how they may suit your property, don’t hesitate to call us at Deep End Pools. Our knowledgeable staff will be able to advise on all aspects of planning and building of a swimming pool, as well as providing competitive quotes.