A Complete Guide On What to Expect from Lifeguard Training

The profession of a lifeguard is considered one of the most rewarding jobs out there. However, being a lifeguard comes with a definite set of responsibilities. 

A lifeguard constantly has to keep an eye on the swimmers, and upon any sign of emergencies, they need to rush to the affected and offer their assistance. Therefore, to prepare lifeguards for their future responsibilities and challenges, they have to undergo intense training. 

If you are someone who is considering becoming a lifeguard, you will have to undergo training to prepare yourself for the upcoming duties, and you might be curious to know what to expect from your training. If that is the case, keep on reading the article.

What to expect from your training sessions? 

A lifeguard at any aquatic facility has to respond to medical emergencies, injuries, or any potential drowning cases. They also need to enforce the safety rules and maintain law and order. 

Therefore, the basic aspects that comprise the training sessions are:

  • Water rescue training
  • Injury stabilization
  • First aid and CPR

It is also important to note that the lifeguard certifications need to be renewed annually before they expire. 

According to the Red Cross, the minimum age to apply for a lifeguard position is 15 years. Before starting the training sessions, a trainee needs to perform a swimming pretest set by their lifeguard instructor

A trainee has to:

  • Swim 100 yards continuously using breaststroke and front crawl
  • Tread through the water for a minute using only their feet
  • Needs to dive feet first into the deepest part of the pool and retrieve a 10-pound brick

The requisites vary according to your shallow water or deep water lifeguarding application. 

Once the trainee qualifies the pretest set by the lifeguard instructor, they move on to the actual training sessions. 

Water rescue training

Each rescue technique is different from the other. Depending upon the emergency and the availability of resources, training is given to the aspiring lifeguards to deal with any situation. 

Water rescuing training generally covers:

  • Using pieces of equipment to make rescuing easier
  • Providing effective help to the distressed swimmers
  • Determining the best approaches to assist in any emergency
  • Techniques to carry one or multiple swimmers to dry land

Injury stabilization

A lifeguard instructor provides basic training to aid neck and back injuries. It has been observed the injuries to the neck and back need to be stabilized first before the distressed swimmer can be moved elsewhere. 

These techniques usually consist of:

  • Using the backboard, head, or chin support for victim found face up or face down
  • Special deep water spinal stabilization techniques

First aid and CPR

Incidents of drowning while swimming is not uncommon, and therefore, lifeguards always need to be well prepared to combat such situations. 

CPR or cardiopulmonary resuscitation becomes an integral part of the training sessions. The sessions usually consist of training one-person or two-person CPR processes for both adults and children and learning how to use cardiac defibrillators. 

It has been observed that performing CPR along with the cardiac has increased the positive outcome tremendously. On the other hand, the first aid training for lifeguards includes breathing valves, controlling bleeding, and applying splints and slings. 

Once a lifeguard trainee finishes the full course, they have to demonstrate their skills through tests set for them. A written and first aid lifeguard certification test needs to be completed before the person is awarded a lifeguard certificate. 

And, there you go! Hopefully, our article could shed some light on what to expect from your lifeguard training sessions.  

Upgrading Your Career from Lifeguard Chair to Instructor

Do you know what is better than saving lives? Teaching others what you know and training them to save lives! As the pools reopen after the pandemic with the latest safety standards and protocols, we need pool lifeguards more than ever. That means we are in desperate need of lifeguard instructors as well! There is no talent shortage, but somebody needs to mold the given resources and upgrade your career from lifeguard chair to instructor.

An instructor is in charge of teaching safety protocols and training swimmers. Their lessons cover everything from supervising first-aid activities to avoiding water injuries. It’s also a job that can take you all over Australia and the world if you have the necessary qualifications. 

You must be a strong swimmer, and the job necessitates a particular level of fitness, strength, and stamina to react fast in an emergency. You must have recognised first-aid and resuscitation qualifications, which must be evaluated and updated regularly.

Reasons why you should upgrade to a lifeguard instructor from lifeguard chair

It takes great courage and determination to navigate through dangerous water to save lives at a critical juncture. It is also important to teach these skills with utmost care. A pool instructor’s field of work is applicable because of their capacity to teach such skills. 

Here are a few reasons why you should upgrade your career and become a lifeguard instructor:

  • You help in saving lives

In your role as a lifeguard instructor or a pool instructor, your primary responsibility will be to teach people how to save lives in the event of an aquatic emergency. These incidents can take place in recreational swimming pools or natural water bodies. Your guidance will help the learner understand how to ensure safety during this stressful time. 

Therefore, you will be entrusted with the responsibility of imparting critical thinking and problem-solving skills. Not only will these skills help save lives in water, but also these skills will be useful off the field. 

  • An unusual professional choice

A lifeguard instructor’s duty entails more than just teaching the basics of water safety. These professionals cover a wide range of issues pertaining to water-related emergencies. This profession demands as much credibility as any other profession involving life-saving. One advantage is that you don’t have to sit in an office for 8 hours while pursuing this profession. Teach while having fun in the water!

  • Personal responsibility

There are plenty of physical and mental benefits of becoming an instructor. For instance, you must ascertain your own physical and mental fitness. You will have to work on your body to ensure 100% fitness. Furthermore, while teaching team building and alertness, your sense of discipline and responsibility will improve. These skills will help you immensely out of your professional life as well. Finally, this profession teaches you to think on your feet and make quick decisions. 

  • Make the most of your knowledge for the greater good

While discussing difficult hypothetical situations with the learners, you can use your theoretical and practical knowledge to help them find realistic solutions. Additionally, you can make use of your knowledge by making sure local man-made water bodies are being taken care of. 

As a lifeguard instructor or pool instructor, you can educate the local community about do’s and don’ts around water bodies. Your knowledge can greatly help humankind. 

These are just a handful of reasons why you might choose to upgrade your career to a lifeguard instructor. As pointed out many times, this profession requires a lot of responsibility on your part and immense leadership skills. In addition, this is a noble profession that helps in saving lives. 

If you want to upgrade your career from lifeguard chair to lifeguard instructor, contact West Coast Water Safety. West Coast Water Safety has some of Australia’s most experienced first-aid, water-safety, and event-safety personnel. Professional lifeguards, pool instructors, beach inspectors, helicopter rescue crews, paramedics, firefighters, nurses, and even a former Bondi lifeguard make up their team.