Traits of a Good Lifeguard

The sun is high and the waters call out to your kids to indulge and have fun! While they frolic in the waters, you will want to make sure that your child’s safety is still the number one priority. This is where Mr. Lifeguard comes in. He watches over your kids to keep them away from danger and unexpected events.

Training a good lifeguard is hinged on professional standards. Here at Zodiac, we have partnered with The Lifesaving Society to offer National Lifeguard Courses under our Aquatic Leadership Program. The Lifesaving Society’s National Lifeguard certification is Canada’s professional lifeguard standard and is the only nationally recognized lifeguard certification program.

Let us share with you what we teach and incorporate into our National Lifeguard (NLS) Courses:

  1. Physical skills. This should come first in the list. We train our lifeguards with key competencies such as the following: object recovery, underwater swim, sprint challenge, rescue drills, endurance challenge, and approach and carry as well as emergency aid training. These activities hone each student’s judgment, skill and fitness, which are critical to execute their purpose.

  1. Reliability and responsibility. Good lifeguards are dependable and we will never tire of reminding our students that they carry such a big responsibility. This boils down to the littlest things like punctuality. It is a lifeguard’s duty to come on time for work, for there is no timetable as to when untoward incidents may happen. He must always be aware of safety procedures and protocols, and must implement these with utmost care and importance.

  1. Preparedness and calmness. Lifeguards must always know when and how to act when the situation demands them to. He must have a good knowledge of his practice and should exude calmness wherever he goes and whatever he does. One of the things that the NLS courses teach the student lifeguards is management of distressed and drowning victims. It takes physical and mental alertness, and good judgment to remain calm and respond immediately to these kinds of situation.

  1. Attention and patience. Lifeguards must always be on the watch. They are expected to be as vigilant as ever, so as to never miss one circumstance that will require their assistance and care. They must always be mindful of their guests, and do what they can to help them get to safety.

  1. Excellent communication skills. A lifeguard must educate the guests on what to do and what not to do. This must be done with confidence and calmness, but also in a polite way. The lifeguard must be able to explain himself clearly, adjusting his communication based on his audience.

  1. Open-mindedness. Your guests aren’t limited to one race or class or gender or age. Lifeguards must give equal attention to all the guests and must learn to understand them. One must never give rude service or exude certain prejudices. Lifeguards must be open to diversity. They must not choose only which ones to help or educate. Instead, a good lifeguard gives equal and satisfying service to ALL the guests.

These are just some of the traits of what makes a good lifeguard. Here at Zodiac Swim School, we strive to give quality training and courses that adhere to professional standards because we value life. This does not only include physical capability but emotional and intellectual acumen as well. We make sure that our trainees are at their best when guarding lives, whether it be at the seaside or at the pool.


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