Wondering where to design the deep end of the pool?

If you’re are thinking about a new custom in-ground swimming pool you may have a long list of design ideas. One factor that few tend to realize is the shape and location of the deep end of a swimming pool.


So, if you’re a savvy aspiring swimming pool owner take a few notes on what will help you determine where to make the deepest point of the pool, why, and what design factors might affect the deep end design.

Swimming Pool Deep End Design

The average shallow depth of a typical swimming pool (15ft x 30ft) is 3ft to 3ft 6in.
Average deepest depth of said pool is around 5ft to 6ft.

Swimming pool depth greatly depends on the overall design shape and size. Certain building requirements may create limitations on how the bottom of the pool (floor) will be formed, and the way it is shaped or sloped.

For example; if you have a pool slide, the slide outlet must be over at least 5ft 6in water depth but could be much deeper. Or, you can add a spa to the deep end of a pool, but need to be aware of how functional it will be.

YOUR Pool Design Depth

If you are designing a custom in-ground pool there is reasonable play in creative design and placement of the deep end. Depending on what design and budget you have there are really 2 options: Deep end in the middle, or at one end only.


swimming pool deep end middle sports pool

Many pool owners like having the deep end at the middle because it allows for more overall activities for the kids. Deep end middle is great for volleyball and other team water sports.

Others prefer the classic deep one end only and that’s fine too. This is the way for active swimmers and those who like to exercise in the pool (but you can do that either way).

It all boils down to the design of pool and your preferences. Consult with your pool builder to see what your options will be. Keep in mind that in some cases going very deep can be costly. Some of the more common design features that could effect how the pool floor and deep end are shaped:

  • Slides
  • Grotto / Cave Waterfalls
  • Diving Boards
  • Jump Rocks
  • Raised walls
  • Beach Entry

Pool Design Construction REQUIREMENTS

For most residential pool construction there are not many code requirements for shapes, sizes or design of the deep end. If you are considering an experienced swimming pool designer to build your pool make sure they check into any local codes related to swimming pool depth and access.

Commercial pool construction will have certain requirements when it comes to the depth. Any publicly held swimming pool must display water depth markers in 2 places, on top of the coping near the edges and in the waterline tiles. This helps for any swimmers to be aware of the depth before jumping in and to see how far they can travel before it is too deep.


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With the middle-deep design, you essentially have 2 ways or more to enter the pool.
A deep-one-side pool will have only one main entry area.

Consider the orientation and shape of pool and how it relates to the entry/exit of the backyard and patio areas. Here are some key factors to consider:

    • What / who is going to be using the pool the most?
    • How short is the shortest swimmer in your family?
    • What features in the pool design might effect this?


    • Do not place the steps and deep end in the same place.
    • Don’t go too deep with a short pool, the incline will be too steep.


Either deep end pool design has pros and cons and are left up to the pool owner to decide what is best for them and consult with a pool design professional.


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