The Most Common Swimming Pool Shapes

by | May 24, 2022 | Pool Designs and Ideas

The different swimming pool shapes offer a variety of opportunites for pool design directions. Some are for specific purposes, such as pools for health and fitness, infinity pools as an architectural statement in the landscape, novelty pools that express the owner’s personality or interests, and natural pools that blend into the landscape.

Ultimately the design of your swimming pool shape depends on a variety of variables: Lot size and available space, property location, budget, safety code compliance, the architectural style of your home, sun exposure, intended use of the pool, whether you want an integrated or separate hot tub, and ultimately your personal preference.

Here are five questions to keep in mind when determining a swimming pool shape and design:

  1. What size is your backyard?
  2. Where in that space do you envision the pool?
  3. How many people will be using the pool at one time?
  4. Are you planning to throw large pool parties? Or will you have it all to yourself?
  5. What shape is best for your needs?


7 of the Most Popular Swimming Pool Shapes


1. Classic or Roman-Shaped Pools

For an aesthetic that looks like a movie set, these pool shapes are reminiscent of each other yet distinctive. These pools are both, in a word, grand. The luxury of a Roman bath, framed by majestic columns with arches at either end, makes an impressive statement. Greek baths are similarly opulent with their spacious design and interesting niches in each corner. Although the inspiration comes from ancient structures, there is nothing antique about these pools. The design shape typically goes well for a medium to large size yard.

2. Oval Pools

Although the name for this pool shape is evident, there is nothing unusual about this classic shape. What’s especially nice is that it can easily frame this shape with potted plants and even fire bowls on pillars. The pool design can support a modern or antique esthetic. While you will need a relatively large space to get the most out of this pool, it offers the flexibility you want for a permanent installation.
Oval Pool Shape

3. Kidney Pools

The kidney or “bean-shaped design” is just as popular as a pool shape as traditional rectangular pools. They are graphically attractive because they are not rectilinear and provide a lovely natural niche along the pool line where you can place your outdoor furniture. Perfect for medium-sized backyards.

Kidney pool shape with spa and negative edge

4. Figure-Eight Pools

You may not see this shape of pool as often as others, but these pools add an attractive hourglass shape to your outdoor retreat. Like two separate pools connected in the middle, you can always designate one for pool floats and the other for your outdoor Zen experience. The shape is one that easily allows water circulation. It provides a soothing whirlpool effect, especially if you add a sparkling water feature like a fountain.

5. L-Shaped Swimming Pool

As the name suggests, this is a shape that makes excellent use of the pool’s footprint. You can use the longer part of the pool for your laps while using the shorter half for relaxing. This pool design provides a natural niche for your furniture and allows easy access to both ends. If your backyard has an irregular shape or has limited space, the design is a great solution.

L-Shaped Pool with spa and blue glass tile

6. Free Form

Contrary to a geometric pool shape, a Free Form designed pool is as organic as it gets. The curvy lines of it’s shape make it look like a lagoon or a pond. With this pool design, there is no prefabricated solution. Think of the kind of pools you have seen in the backyards of professional athletes and the rich and famous. This super customizable solution is the stuff of luxury. You can create your kind of indulgence with suitable textiles and accents for any pool installation. On the other hand, freeform pools allow you to define the profile of your pool in endless ways!

Free Form Shape with beach entry and rock waterfall

7. Rectangular/Geometric Pools

Although we list rectangular & Geometric pool shapes last, they are by no means the least popular! It’s the classic pool where you can add steps into the shallow water and a Baja ledge for sunbathing. There’s also a lot to say about including a nice little swim-up bar! This shape will always be around. This pool shape offers flexibility. You can still swim your laps and at the same time have enough space and depth for both the youngest and oldest family members to enjoy this multipurpose backyard pool.

Rectangular pool shape with swim up bar

To see more images of pool shapes, sizes, designs, plus design features and more that we have built in Austin, San Antonio, Houston and surrounding areas, visit our Residential Pool Gallery.

Cody Pools is the number one swimming pool builder in the nation for over 10 years running! Contact any of our offices in Texas, Florida, or Arizona, or visit our website to schedule a free consultation.