Pool Steps & Ledges

Steps, ledges and social areas

Some pools look like natural ponds with rocks in the water line, green or optional internal colours, free form shapes, timber decking etc.

Others are straight line swimming lanes and very geometric.

Whatever design it is important to be able to enter and leave the pool safely.

Concrete pools can be any shape and provide great flexibility of design and there are many interesting step designs.

Social activity


  • Good design will always provide easy access into and out of the pool.
  • Comfortable steps are usually 300 mm risers so in a 1.1 m pool we have three steps.
  • Steps are usually minimum 400 mm wide and hence comfortable to access and use as seats.
  • A ledge for spa jets is best 500 mm wide so you can lay down on it.
  • Steps are best placed in line with the walking traffic flow so access is obvious and also easy to locate.
  • Coloured step tread tiles located on the edge of the steps help define the steps.

Ledges in shallow and deep end

  • Ledge width can vary to create shallow sections for less able people, little children and even dogs.
  • From a safety point of view the steps and ledges are best designed outside of the centre swimming lane so there is a clear lapping area in the pool.
  • Sitting ledges can be located in the shallow and deep end and are best at a depth of 500 mm so swimming onto them is easy.
  • Ledges are popular as safety features when in front of sheer raised platforms and water features.
  • Ledges should be well defined to prevent people accidentally jumping onto the ledge.

Training lanes

  • The training lane of an Olympic pool is 2.5 m wide.
  • Depth is best over 1.4 m to enable tumble turns at each end.
  • One day your children might want to train for the Olympics.
  • This is the most popular lane size requested and allows for two people to swim laps at the same time.
  • Pool length is up to the budget and space available.
  • Diving starter blocks are available for the enthusiasts.
  • Lane markers and crosses on the end wall can enhance the training lane appearance.


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