outdoor pool

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The Brentanobad in Frankfurt am Main is the largest pool in Germany
Königsberg copper pond ,
17,000 m 2 of water

An outdoor swimming pool is an open-air public bathing establishment . In addition to the actual swimming facility, this facility also consists of changing rooms, toilets , and sunbathing areas and is monitored by supervisors . A fee is normally charged for using the facilities.


An outdoor swimming pool consists either of a demarcated area of ​​flowing or standing water or of an outdoor swimming pool . This swimming pool usually has a rectangular shape and standardized dimensions so that sporting competitions can take place in it. The pool length is usually 25 m or 50 m. Often there is also a diving platform . Usually there are also paddling pools for children in such a facility. Usually there are also slides . Additional leisure activities are offered on the open spaces, such as B. table tennis , beach volleyball fields, chess fields . A kiosk usually provides food . In many cities there is also the name summer pool , as the pools are closed in the colder months. If the outdoor pool is inside or on the edge of a forest, it is called a forest pool .

Berlin beach life (Heinrich Zille, 1901)

In contrast to the mostly paid outdoor pools, there are lakes that can be used free of charge for bathing and swimming. These are called bathing lakes and have little or no structural equipment. Heinrich Zille painted the Wannsee (Berlin) as a notorious example .

Nocturnal heat losses from an outdoor pool can be reduced by 40–50% using a pool cover.

In 2012 there were 3,592 outdoor swimming pools in Germany, that is 51% of all swimming pools.


The bathing culture of antiquity was lost in the Middle Ages - bathing was considered disreputable until the Enlightenment and only became more popular again towards the end of the 18th century, when the first English seaside baths emerged. In the 19th century, all sorts of devices such as wooden crates, bathing carts and the first beach chairs were used in order to satisfy decency - plus swimwear that covered the entire body. Free swimming in the river could still be punished in the middle of the 19th century.

One of the first open-air swimming pools in northern Germany was the Kreidemannsche Anstalt at the Wakenitz in the Hanseatic city of Lübeck, which had been dammed since the Middle Ages . It was opened in 1799 by swimming instructor Anton Kreidemann and existed until 1898. As a replacement for the swimming pool, which had to give way to a culvert in the course of the construction work for the Elbe-Lübeck Canal , the city of Lübeck opened in 1899 near the baths on the Wakenitz the outdoor swimming pool on the Falkenwiese, which still exists today and is a listed building . The first facilities that are reminiscent of today's outdoor swimming pools came up with the river bathing establishments , in which a pontoon with a platform and a sunken swimming pool was anchored in the water. Or they began to secure flat stretches of beach by lakes, to fence them in and to provide them with simple wooden changing rooms, ticket booths and possibly a kiosk. A swimming master supervised the operation and ensured the necessary security and propriety. The changing rooms were lined up and shielded the bathing area from prying eyes. The outdoor pool was only used for a short period of time in midsummer, which is why simple, provisional-looking wooden structures seemed sufficient in the early days of the outdoor pool. A specimen of this species that has remained almost unchanged to this day is the Altglashütten (Feldberg) bathing beach, which was built in 1926 on Windgälleweiher in the Black Forest. Where there was no natural swimming lake, an artificial lake was created, for example in Laupheim ( Biberach district ), where the park swimming pool was built in 1933/34 on the outskirts of the city according to plans by the city architect Herrmann Gutknecht. The outdoor pool had now become a municipal building task. The swimming school in the Wehrgraben in Steyr , built in 1874, is known as Austria's oldest open-air swimming pool .

Linguistic peculiarity

In the city of Fürth (and only there) the term outdoor pool stood in contrast to the pay pool : One could be visited without, the other with entrance fee. Both were natural river baths in the open air. Only in 1955 with the opening of an open-air swimming pool in today's sense did the term become the same as it is today. In a certain way, however, it also applied to Vienna's children's outdoor pools .

More bathrooms

Web links

Commons : Outdoor Pools  - Collection of pictures, videos and audio files
Wiktionary: Outdoor pool  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations

Individual evidence

  1. Volker Quaschning , Regenerative Energy Systems. Technology - Calculation - Simulation , 8th updated edition. Munich 2013, p. 129f.
  2. How many swimming pools are there in Germany , on swim.de
  3. Sabine Kraume-Probst, Bathing fun with monument protection, outdoor swimming pools in Baden-Württemberg , in: Denkmalpflege in Baden-Württemberg , Vol. 47 No. 4 (2018), pp. 230-234, accessed on April 13, 2019
  4. cf. ibid
  5. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=co-GO_KPUE Hochwasser Steyr 2002, Florian Kepl, youtube.com, Video (24:37) June 4, 2002, accessed December 25, 2015.
  6. Flussbad-Idyll am Rednitzstrand, 100 years of the open-air swimming pool and the Zahlbad swimming pool 1906–2006, Städtebilder photo archive and publishing house Fürth, ISBN 3-927347-59-0