A Few Helpful Tips For Entering the World of Lifeguards

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A Few Helpful Tips For Entering the World of Lifeguards

If you are thinking about lifeguarding as a summer job, there are a couple of things you might want to take into account prior to applying for the job. Here are a few points that will hopefully guide you along.

Take Certification Classes and Training Seriously

While this is obvious because one of the objectives of your job is to be a lifesaver, sometimes the information can be a little too overwhelming. There are certain rules and protocols to follow so you will probably not remember all of them in one go. However, resources like YouTube and Google are great if you want to learn more or just need a little refresher in your head. Taking training seriously is going to help you in your first year as a guard. Even though an extreme incident might not happen every day, you never know if your head guards or higher ups will be doing random audits once in a while. Audits are just random tests at any given time you are on shift. They are basically just to test a guard on their skills unannounced so it shows whether guards know their skills.

Make Sure You Can Swim Really Well

Again, this might sound obvious, but if you can’t swim a 500 in under 10-15 minutes (not everyone is a competitive swimmer who can do this with ease) and do the brick test to the best of your ability, you might want to hit the pool to improve your stamina. While this might not be the case for everyone, for the ones who will work at a beach, it is crucial to be on top of your swimming ability. The ocean is way different from a simple 25-yard pool and there are so many other factors that you have to worry about. I would recommend watching “Bondi Rescue” on YouTube for professional beach lifeguarding information.

Bring All the Essentials You Need For Work

Sunscreen, sunglasses, water, snacks and anything you might think will be important on your shift should be carried along. When you are a lifeguard, you are most likely going to be working outside in the sun, and since it will be summer, it will be hot. So guarding in the sun most of the time is not a fun time. The most important thing you are going to need is water and sunscreen so you do not potentially have heatstroke or heat exhaustion, possibly causing the shift to go a guard down.

Be Able to Have Fun On the Job

While lifeguarding, it’s important to be alert because if you slack off for a couple of minutes, then there is a chance something can happen. However, while the job may be serious, there are always times where you and the staff can goof off. Opening and closing shifts, as well as slow days, are great days to just sit around and get to know your co-workers. First, make sure you have done all your duties. I worked at my local pool and on our slow days, we would hop in the pool and just race each other or even build a raft out of the lifeguard buoys. Although it did sink, it was an overall good time just taking a break from watching the pool all day. I mean, you are spending your whole summer at the pool, so why not get to know who you are working with.

While the first year of lifeguarding can be tough, it is always important to come in prepared every shift because you never know what will happen.

All commentaries are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Swimming World Magazine nor its staff.

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