There is no limit to the variety of swimming pool and hot tub shapes and sizes that are possible. Shapes are dictated by a number of factors which include homeowner preference, configuration of the outdoor space, and designing for specific usage and features. When considering the footprint of a swimming pool, an often overlooked aspect of the design is the depth, and more specifically, the depth transitions from shallow to deeper. Local municipal codes and National Standards have been written to mandate safety in the depths of swimming pools, but it can be an art to incorporate safety into a practical configuration that meets the homeowner’s desires.
Traditionally, the rectilinear swimming pool was the configuration of the Old World. Elongated versions of this pool have evolved into lap pools and even into the Olympic-sized swimming pool. The smallest version of these are the swim spa, in which swim resistance jets are installed in the wall of the pool to provide a current against which to swim “laps”. Rectilinear pools can have shallow water at either end, and be deeper in the middle. Pools with this symmetric depth configuration are known as “Sport”. These pools are ideally suited for volleyball or basketball games across the middle of the pool, making a fair course for all players. Pools can also be as shallow as a couple of inches (beach entry pool or zero-depth entry pool) and can gradually deepen across the longitudinal section. Typically the slope has to be fairly gradual, at least up to the first transition point, at which point in can get somewhat more aggressive.
The polar opposite of the rectilinear pool is the freeform pool. Typically, a freeform pool can take on multiple curves and radii to form the shape of the pool. Kidney-shaped and lagoon-style free-forms are some examples of this design. These pools can be traditional, or can have a more natural, pond-like feel to them.
Another shape option is the geometric pool, which is a variant of the rectilinear pool. Geometric pools utilize straight lines to create various geometric shapes. Of course, all of the aforementioned shapes can be combined in various ways to create unique shapes that perfectly suit the homeowner and the outdoor living space. Some examples of these combinations are the Roman End swimming pool, pool with offset diving well, and pool with scalloped edges.