The basics of lifeguard training
Lifeguard training can be a rewarding and fulfilling qualification to have, which will enable you to seek employment at some of the best leisure centres in the UK. Not only do lifeguards ensure that the rules of a swimming pool are being obeyed, but they can jump to action should someone injure themselves or be at risk of drowning. You can also train to be a beach lifeguard, but this is a different qualification. Lifeguard jobs are nearly always flexible, part-time and therefore perfect for college and university students.
There are a few qualifications that you need to embark on lifeguard training. The easiest way to gain these is the National Pool Lifeguard Qualification (NPLQ), which is the most widely recognised lifeguard qualification in the UK and Ireland. The general course duration to become a qualified lifeguard is around 36 hours. You must be over 16, be comfortable with diving in deep water, be able to swim 50m in less than 60 seconds, swim 100m continuously on front and back, tread water for 30 seconds, and climb out of a pool unaided.
What will you learn?
During the course of your lifeguard training, you will learn basic first aid skills in case of injury, the risk of drowning or other issues you may come across during your employment. Some courses may also offer an additional defibrillation certificate. You’ll learn life-saving techniques, including the proper procedure to rescue an at-risk individual in both deep water and shallow water. Lifeguard training will prepare you for every eventuality and will teach you exactly what to do, with simulated scenarios and dummies. You will be taught different aspects of the law where being a lifeguard is concerned, potential hazards of the pool area and how to avoid/control them, and how to rescue someone with a suspected spinal injury to avoid further damage.
The benefits of being a lifeguard
Not only Is being a lifeguard hugely rewarding, it could save someone’s life. It is an excellent gateway to other jobs in the leisure industry – in fact, many pool managers started their careers as lifeguards. There is also the option of varied working hours and flexibility, and learning team working skills. Lifeguard training not only prepares you for a job as a lifeguard, but it gives you skills beneficial for life, such as first aid and CPR. It will set you up for life.