USA Swimming, NCAA and NFSHAA allow starts from blocks when depth is 4’-0” or more. USA swimming says that no “teaching” of starts from the deck or a block of any height is allowed in less than 5’-0” of water. Although CH is not recommending starts in 4’-0” of water, starting from the deck is the standard procedure for the younger age groups that swim 25s and also the 4 x 25 relays. Any start performed by swimmers of this age/ability could be considered “instructional”. With this in mind, the shallow end of the pool where summer league or age group meets will occur should not be less than 5’-0”.
The Red Cross pool depth requirement for lifesaving certification is 7’-0” to 10’-0”. Therefore, a pool that is 7’-0” deep is deep enough for Red Cross classes. 9’-0” is required for teaching diving off of a pool wall or deep water rescue.
There is no requirement from PADI on the water depth for SCUBA. The chance for Scuba and Red Cross training is fairly high and it is therefore recommended that 9’-0” be used as the minimum depth for SCUBA.
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