What is Inside Water in Water Polo: A Comprehensive Guide

What is Inside Water in Water Polo

Water polo is a sport that has been around for over a century, and it’s no surprise that it’s one of the most physically demanding sports out there. As a spectator, you may have seen players swimming, treading water, and throwing the ball, but have you ever wondered what’s inside the water in water polo?

In this article, we’ll explore the different elements present in the water during a water polo game, from the temperature to the chemicals used to keep the pool clean. Whether you’re a seasoned water polo player or a curious observer, you’ll gain a deeper understanding of what goes on beneath the surface of this intense and thrilling sport. So, let’s dive in!

Water polo is played in a pool of water, but what is inside the water can have a big impact on the game. The water in a water polo pool is typically treated with chemicals to keep it clean and clear. This can affect the way the ball moves through the water, as well as the way players move through the water. Additionally, the temperature of the water can have an impact on the game, as colder water can make it more difficult for players to move quickly and effectively.

Understanding what is inside the water in water polo can help players and coaches develop strategies to succeed in the game. By understanding how the chemicals used to treat the water can affect the ball and the players, teams can adjust their tactics to take advantage of these factors.

Additionally, understanding how the temperature of the water can impact the game can help teams prepare for different conditions and adjust their game plan accordingly.

Water Composition

Water polo is a sport that is played in a pool of water. The composition of the water in which the game is played can have a significant impact on the players’ health and safety. This section will discuss the various components of water that are relevant to water polo.


Chlorine is a common disinfectant used in swimming pools to kill bacteria and other harmful microorganisms. While chlorine is effective in killing germs, it can also cause skin and eye irritation.

In some cases, prolonged exposure to chlorine can lead to asthma or other respiratory problems. Water polo players should be aware of the chlorine levels in the pool and take appropriate precautions to protect themselves.


Bacteria are microorganisms that can be found in water. While some types of bacteria are harmless, others can cause illness. In swimming pools, bacteria can enter the water through sweat, urine, and fecal matter.

Water polo players should be aware of the risks associated with bacteria in the pool and take appropriate precautions to prevent infection.

This includes showering before and after swimming, avoiding swallowing pool water, and staying out of the pool if they have an open wound.


In addition to chlorine, swimming pools may contain other chemicals such as pH adjusters, algaecides, and clarifiers. While these chemicals are generally safe when used properly, they can cause skin and eye irritation if not properly balanced.

Water polo players should be aware of the chemical composition of the pool and take appropriate precautions to protect themselves. This includes wearing goggles and using skin protectants such as petroleum jelly.

Water Quality Standards

Water quality standards (WQS) are regulations approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that outline the desired condition of a water body and the strategies to safeguard or attain that condition. These regulations are a compilation of state, territorial, authorized tribal, or federal law provisions.

Maintaining safe and healthy conditions for water-based activities such as swimming and water polo is crucial, and these standards play a significant role in achieving this goal.

pH Levels

The pH level of water is a measure of its acidity or alkalinity. The ideal pH range for swimming and water polo is between 7.2 and 7.8, which is slightly basic.

This range is important for maintaining the effectiveness of chlorine, which is commonly used to disinfect pool water. If the pH level is too low, the chlorine will become less effective, and if it is too high, the water can become cloudy and irritated.

Water Hardness

The term water hardness pertains to the concentration of dissolved minerals, specifically calcium and magnesium, in the water. Hard water can cause scaling on pool surfaces and equipment, as well as skin and eye irritation. The ideal range for water hardness in swimming and water polo is between 200 and 400 parts per million (ppm).


The temperature of the water in swimming and water polo is important for both comfort and safety. The ideal temperature range for competition is between 77 and 82 degrees Fahrenheit (25-28 degrees Celsius).

Water that is too cold can cause muscle cramps and decrease performance, while water that is too warm can cause dehydration and overheating.

Water Polo Regulations

Referee Guidelines

In water polo, a referee is necessary to ensure fair play and safety for all players. The referee holds the power to enforce the rules and can impose penalties or exclusions for any violations.

In water polo, there are rules that players must follow to play fairly and safely. Sometimes, a player might break a rule, and the referee is there to make sure everyone follows the rules.

If a player breaks a rule, the referee will blow their whistle twice quickly and then once for a longer time. Then, the referee will point at the player who broke the rule and move their arm towards a certain area of the pool.

Finally, the referee will raise one or both hands while showing a number to tell everyone which player broke the rule. This is called an exclusion.

Player Safety

Ensuring player safety is of utmost importance in water polo. The minimum water depth required is 1.8 meters (6 feet), but many pools have shallow ends, which may not meet the requirement. The dimensions of the goals in water polo are 3 m (9 ft 10.11 in) in width and 0.9 m (2 ft 11.43 in) in height.

A white line marks the center of the pool, and players are required to tread water throughout the game and are not allowed to touch the bottom of the pool.

While the ball is in play, teams are allowed to substitute players, but such substitutions must take place either in front of their team’s bench or from the corner.

During stoppage of the clock, players can enter and exit the field of play from any location. The fundamental rules of the game stipulate that each team must have seven players in the pool, comprising six field players and a goalkeeper.

It is important to note that water polo can be a physically demanding sport, and players must be in good physical condition to participate. Players should wear appropriate protective gear, such as mouthguards and ear guards, to prevent injury.

Additionally, players should be aware of their surroundings and avoid dangerous or reckless play that could result in injury to themselves or others.

Overall, water polo regulations are in place to ensure fair play and safety for all players. Referees play a crucial role in enforcing the rules and maintaining a safe playing environment, while players must also take responsibility for their own safety and the safety of others on the field.