Make a splash at the UCSB Recreation Center’s pools! We offer 2 beautiful, newly plastered pools and a spa. Our outdoor pools include the Olympic size "Large Pool" with attached Dive Well and the "Small Pool" a 25yd, 9-lane all shallow teaching pool. Enjoy a wide range of programs and services, from SCUBA and swim lessons to log rolling and youth camps, open to both youth and adults. Whether individuals are seeking to hone their skills, pick up some new ones, or simply go for a lap, join us at UCSB Aquatics!

Pool use requires a Recreation Center Membership.

Standard Hours

Monday – Friday: 6:30 am - 8 pm
Saturday & Sunday: 9 am - 8 pm

See Recreation Center Hours for closures and reduced hours.


  • WE DO NOT ALLOW DIAPERS OR SWIM DIAPERS IN THE POOLS. If your child is not fully "potty-trained" do not bring them into the pools.
  • One breath, One length*, One time. (*25 yds or less) We enforce a "no prolonged breath-holding" policy in our pools. We do not allow hyperventilating repeated breath-holding (static or while swimming), or hypoxic training.

Due to the extended closure of UCSB Campus Pool, the Recreation Center pools are accommodating limited pool use needs for UCSB Intercollegiate Swimming and Water Polo as well as UCSB Recreation Club Water Polo and Triathlon.

Please bear with us as we work to make space for the additional student groups. It is still our priority and primary mission to have drop-in recreation space available in both pools. Please see below for a detailed schedule.

SC = Short Course, LC = Long Course, DW = Dive Well
Example: 13SC + DW= 13 Short Course Lanes and Dive Well Occupied

Aquatics Programs

Instructor: Staff  |  Quarterly & Monthly Passes Available 

Gaucho Masters is committed to helping increase the physical fitness of swimmers at all levels from novice swimmers to highly competitive swimmers, triathletes, and open water swimmers. We offer a structured workout program that meets the needs of a fitness swimmer, multi-sport athlete, or competitive swimmer. Improve your efficiency, stroke technique and endurance to make your swimming experience more successful. Come join us in the pool!

Please note**This is NOT a learn-to-swim program, you should have prior formal swimming experience.

Welcome to the underwater adventure! UCSB is located in one of the premier diving locations on the California coast. Dives in the Channel Islands National Park are rich with marine life, kelp forests and make for world-class dive sites. Our instructors are highly respected in the local area for their style and extensive years of teaching. They have over 90 years combined experience!

Learn more about SCUBA offerings

Learn to swim or refine your skills in eight 30 minute lessons, available both one-on-one and in group settings. Group swim lessons will be limited to 5 students per beginner or intermediate group and 6 for advanced. 

Adult Group Swim Lesson - Beginner
For adults new to swimming, this course introduces basic swim skills focusing on feeling more comfortable in a pool, breath control, floating, and forward movement in the water. We'll work on coordination for swimming on front and back as well as using equipment such as kickboards and swim fins.

Adult  Group Swim Lesson - Intermediate
For adults that are comfortable in the water, can swim freestyle, breaststroke, or backstroke continuously for 50 yards. The focus of Intermediate swimming is to build proficiency in freestyle (including side-breathing & flip turns), backstroke & breaststroke. Butterfly will be introduced based on skill level and demand of the group.

Adult Swim Lesson - Private
Let our instructor meet you where you're at in your swimming skills. These adult lessons provide you with individual instruction to help you improve your water skills whether you are a non-swimmer or want to improve on stroke refinement and efficiency you already posses. 

Register Here

Our swim lesson program follows the American Red Cross progressive swimming level model which ensures swimmers gain valuable skills for confidence in the water. We offer private and small group lessons. Group lessons are age and level-dependent. 

Learn more about our Youth Swim Lessons

Instructor: Debbie Miles-Dutton

A water workout designed to enhance cardiovascular fitness and muscular strength. This challenging class, set to music, is for participants of all fitness levels and swimming abilities. Join us in the pool and enjoy the many benefits the water environment offers.

Register here 

UCSB Recreation offers Jr. Lifeguards and Beach 'n Surf Camp during the summers.

Learn more about our Jr. Lifeguard Program
Learn more about our Beach 'n Surf Camp


Facilities Information

  • 50-meter x 25-yard x 30-meter "L" pool
  • Diving Well features one 3-meter diving board
  • Long Course = 8 lanes
  • Short Course = 20 lanes
  • ADA Lift
  • Min Depth = 4'
  • Max Depth = 17'
  • Pool temp = ~80°
  • 25-yard pool with attached 0-3 foot depth teaching area
  • ADA access ramp
  • ADA Lift
  • Short Course = 9 lanes
  • Min Depth = 2.5'
  • Max Depth = 4'
  • Temp = ~82°
  • Capacity = 17
  • Temp = ~102°
  • ADA Lift

Did You Know...




Lap swimming lanes are available 89 hours per week. 



The Variable Speed Drive motors that operate the Pool circulation system are programmed to run at lower RPMs overnight to save energy and money.

Lightning Cloud


The small pool was struck by lightning in Fall 2015 (no one was present, whew!) and caused two areas of damage to pool plaster. That is why we close the pools, spa, and showers during electrical storms.



The Large and the Small Pools were originally opened in 1994. Pools were drained, re-plastered in 2009 and 2023. The concrete decks were rebuilt and lighting rewired in 2009.

Employment Opportunities

Lifeguard Photo

Want the best job on campus with a group of fun, outdoor loving lifeguards and swim instructors? Come join the UCSB Aquatics team at the Recreation center aquatics complex. Open positions include Lifeguards, Swim Instructors, Pool Instructors, Pool Maintenance Staff, Jr. Lifeguards, and Surf & Kayak Camp Instructors. Join the team!

Apply Today


Debbie Miles-Dutton
Assistant Director, Aquatics & Safety
(805) 893-7616

Rick Van Hoorn
Aquatics Coordinator
(805) 893-6740