Do you ever find that sometimes the weekend activities of summer can leave you even more stressed when Monday comes back around? If your only chance for summer relaxation is during the week, then what could be better than an oasis in your own backyard. There are a variety of different pool styles, to suit almost anyone’s tastes and size requirements. This is just a sampling of some pools to whet your appetite:
A Free-Form Pool is designed in a naturalistic style with curves and flowing lines, tailored to fit each space. They’re also known as natural lagoons or oasis pools, and can become quite whimsical in design. Contemporary versions feature rock outcroppings and waterfalls, and may allow for the design of elevated living areas and built-in elements such as spas, fireplaces, and outdoor kitchens.
Lap Pools are installed for the purpose of swimming laps for health and fitness benefits. Up to 50 feet long, but as narrow as six feet wide, these pools are a good choice for smaller backyards. Not exclusive to fitness purposes, their shallow depth allows for lounging and cooling off with friends on a hot day, similar to a plunge pool.
Infinity Pools are probably the most stunning of pool styles, with at least one edge where water is allowed to spill out of the pool, being caught in a basin below. The illusion that the pool runs off into “infinity” is most striking when installed beside a body of water and the edge of the pool blends in with the distant view. This type of pool is a popular choice for hotels, resorts and luxury homes.
The Geometric Pool is what most of us are familiar with, and as the name suggests, composed of straight lines and basic curves. Most other pool styles are variations on the geometric style, but this traditional swimming pool still holds a strong place as being the most elegant and versatile of pools.
A Plunge Pool is a cross between a traditional pool and a spa, some would even call it a “spool”. These pools are too small to really swim in, anywhere from 18’x10′ to 10’x6′, and are kept shallow for the purpose of wading, relaxing and cooling off. Some pools are also built with jets and heaters, quickly turning your pool into an over-sized spa. This versatility and decreasing house/lot sizes are making the plunge pool a popular choice for urban and suburban homes. The smaller size makes them much easier to maintain than a traditional sized pool, with reduced water requirements and costs.
A Perimeter Overflow Pool features a slim notched or grated perimeter around the pool’s edge, allowing the water level to be even with the surrounding area – similar to an infinity pool, but allowing water to run-off all four sides instead of one. Without walls for the water to bounce off of, the still water takes on a calm glass-like appearance. These pools are exceptionally beautiful but can be expensive, requiring special equipment and the need to hire someone with experience installing the underground system.
Diving Pools are deeper than most pools, typically 8 to 9 feet deep, and have to be quite long to accommodate a safe diving area and shallower play area. While these pools were a popular choice over 15 years ago, concerns with safety and high maintenance requirements have caused these childhood favourites to fall out of favour.
Swimming Machines are an interesting option, as they only take up the footprint of a plunge pool, but offer the exercise options of a lap pool. A recirculating current of water provides resistance to swim against, with just enough space for one person to move around comfortably. When not being used for exercise, it can be used exactly as a plunge pool.