How to Use SQL While Loop

How to Use SQL While Loop

SQL while loop is a programming structure that allows you to repeatedly execute a block of code as long as a specified condition is true. This tutorial will cover the basic syntax of SQL while loop, how to create a while loop in SQL, and some examples of how to use them.

Basic Syntax

The basic syntax of SQL while loop is as follows:

WHILE condition DO

Where condition is the condition that must be met for the loop to continue, and statements are the SQL statements that will be executed as long as the condition is true.

Creating a While Loop in SQL

To create a while loop in SQL, you must first define the condition and the statements you want to execute. Here’s an example of a while loop that will print numbers from 1 to 10:

DECLARE @counter INT = 1;

WHILE @counter <= 10 DO
    PRINT @counter;
    SET @counter = @counter + 1;

In this example, the condition is @counter <= 10, which means that the loop will continue to execute as long as the value of @counter is less than or equal to 10. The statements are PRINT @counter and SET @counter = @counter + 1, which will print the value of @counter and then increment it by 1.

Example Outputs

The output of the above SQL while loop would be as follows:


Troubleshooting Tips

When working with while loops in SQL, it’s important to make sure that the condition you define eventually becomes false, otherwise the loop will run indefinitely. To avoid this, make sure to define a logical condition that will eventually be false.

It’s also important to make sure that the statements you define do not cause any errors or infinite loops. To avoid this, test your code thoroughly and make sure that all variables and SQL statements are properly defined.


SQL while loop is a powerful programming structure that can be used to automate repetitive tasks and perform complex operations in SQL. By following the basic syntax and examples provided in this tutorial, you should be able to create your own while loops in SQL and use them to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of your SQL queries.