The Benefits of a Smaller Practice Pool

Steve Moren

The Benefits of a Smaller Practice Pool


We have received questions from parents as to why swimmers do not necessarily swim in a 25m pool such as we have at Berkhamsted leisure Centre (BLC) or Knox Johnston (KJ).

We have outlined below some key reasons why we focus our two early-stage Group swimmers at the shorter Abbots Hill pool or, indeed, over half lengths at BLC & KJ.

We do, however, provide them with the opportunity, under non-covid times, to experience at least one session at the longer pools.

·         The focus of this club is skills, get the techniques right first. Without good technique the swimmer is unlikely to achieve their potential in the longer term as it becomes harder to change ingrained poor technique. 

·         A smaller pool means that the coach has better visibility of what the swimmers are doing and can quickly and easily communicate this. 

·         In a longer, 25m or above pool, sound does not travel well and not every coach has a booming voice, therefore its easier for the swimmers to hear. 

·         Smaller numbers of swimmers per session, allow us to achieve a much better coach:swimmer ratio meaning that the feedback can be more specifically focused and relevant to them as the coach is not monitoring a larger number of swimmers. 

·         For our younger swimmers it can be daunting to be asked to swim 25m lengths, in a smaller pool this does not necessarily occur.

With this approach the swimmer will develop much better skills and as they practice their times will improve as well as their endurance.

Therefore, the simple calculation that all swimmers and parents need to be aware of is;


Finally, every swimmer develops differently and at their own paces, it is not a straight-line progression:

For more information about the “Comparison Trap” go to - 

Finally, the important thing is not the facility you have but what you do with that facility and the desire of the athletes to make the best of whatever talent they possess.