Posts Tagged ‘guard for life’
As schools are letting out for the year and the summer season is picking up, it is important to remember how essential lifeguarding is to the pool community. It is easy to get into a routine and forget to focus on some of the basics – like effective scanning.
Effective Scanning is core to your ability to be a safe and successful lifeguard at any pool or body of water. Below is a refresher on that important skill.
Don’t get distracted
As a lifeguard, it is your job to not be distracted by pool games or commotion on the pool decks. You must stay alert and attentive when sitting in the chair. Periodically adjusting your body to appropriate positions will make you more alert and allow you to actively scan the pool and deck area.
Don’t forget to use your eyes and head to scan.
Events may happen in your periphery that you would only catch if you turn your head to face it, and while things may be going well on the surface, someone might be struggling below the water, so you need to be able to see everything that is going on.
Be aware of your area at all times
High risk or crowded areas require that you be extra alert and attentive as signs of distress or drowning may be lost in a crowded area. But while it is good practice to focus attention on such areas (crowded areas, little kids in the shallow end, diving boards, etc.) it is important not to neglect any areas to which you have been assigned.
Review your skills
If you have a skill review book, be sure to use it to review your lifeguard training. Unexpected emergencies can happen at any pool, so be ready and alert!
One last thing to remember, and perhaps the most important, is that while you are on duty, you are at work, and people are depending on you to keep the pool area safe. Safety is the biggest responsibility, but it is also important to have fun and become an important part of the pool community.
Making the decision to become a lifeguard may pose several challenges. One of these challenges is passing the required lifeguard training. Luckily, there are several steps you can take to start the training process by registering, researching the types of training required and practicing your swimming skills.
In order to start the certification process, you have to signup. Many lifeguard companies offer online registration, but you can also reserve a spot over the phone. This part is easy and not stressful at all! Just provide your information, make sure you understand the costs and you will be ready to begin training. Some companies offer discounted training to employees. When choosing a class, be sure you feel confident in your swimming abilities before signing up for your physical training.
Sometimes it’s hard to figure out what training you actually need in order to sit atop the lifeguard chair. There are many different types of courses available, so the choices can be daunting. Take some time to review the training classes available at your company. Don’t be afraid to contact someone at to ask training-related questions – remember that training requirements may differ based on your location and job requirements.
Training offerings that you might see:
- Lifeguard Training Prerequisite
- Lifeguard Training Course
- Lifeguard Blended Learning Course
- Lifeguard Review
- CPR/AED for Lifeguards Review
- CPR/AED for Lifeguards
- Waterfront Skills Module
- Lifeguard Instructor Course
- Pool Operator Course
A new lifeguard usually needs the following:
- Lifeguard Training Prerequisite (if required)
- Lifeguard Training Course
- CPR/AED for Lifeguards
- OSHA Training (only if you’re handling chemicals)
- Blood Bourne Pathogens training
The Brick Test:
In addition to your classroom training, which covers everything from CPR to respecting your patrons, a lifeguard training course may have a required prerequisite test. During this test, you will be required to continuously swim 300 yards, either front crawl or breast stroke. You are also required to tread water for two minutes without the use of your hands. Don’t worry; this isn’t as terrifying as it sounds. Just practice!
Once you’ve demonstrated you can swim, you will be required to complete the Brick Test. This can be tricky.
Here’s what you have to do:
You have 1 minute and 40 seconds to complete the following:
- Swim 20 yards (without goggles) and locate the brick submerged 7-10 feet deep in the pool.
- Surface dive (from the water) either feet or head first and retrieve the brick.
- Swim with the brick back to your starting location holding it throughout the swim. The brick cannot be submerged, and two hands must be holding the brick throughout the swim.
- Exit the water without using a ladder or steps.
Now here is how I beat the brick:
- When you locate the brick, keep it a bit in front of you so that when you dive down, you will land right on it.
- Dive down headfirst. It will get you there faster.
- Once you pick up the brick, push hard with your feet to propel yourself upward. Then, flutter kick until you reach the surface.
- Next, rest the brick on the upper part of your chest right under your chin and get into the back float position.
- With both hands holding the brick, begin to kick.
- Many people decide to frog kick (the kick used in breaststroke) because it is more powerful, but whichever kick you are more comfortable with will work.
- Now, just kick until you reach the wall. Once you are there, place one hand on the wall and use the other to set the brick down.
- Push yourself up onto the side of the pool, and you are done!
These steps are key to beating the brick test. Just remember to practice, and your start to a lifeguarding career will be a definite success!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nicole Friedlander is a junior at McDonogh High School in Baltimore, Maryland. She has been a lifeguard for American Pool Enterprises and Guard for Life since she was fifteen, and has loved every minute of it. Between sitting in the sun, helping to keep swimmers safe, saving money for her college fund and fine tuning her work-place skills, she could not think of a better summer job.
Aside from being a lifeguard, she is also a varsity cross country and indoor track runner as well as a year-round lacrosse player. Even with the busy life of a high school student, she finds that lifeguarding fits easily into her schedule and is a rewarding life experience.
Guard for Life wants to wish our lifeguards and readers a heartfelt Happy New Year. As 2011 winds down, the New Year reminds us that summer is just around the corner. And while it’s cold outside in most areas across the country, it will only be a few months before warm weather is upon us again – with the excitement of pool season.
With this new season, Guard for Life will be making some really great improvements to the Summer to Win contest (you know, the one that gives away cash and prizes all summer) and we will also be pumping-up our Facebook and Twitter profiles. We are also making things easier for you by improving our online application process. Make sure to apply early this year to secure your spot at your favorite pool!
Guard for Life makes a resolution every year – to improve the lifeguard experience and make your summer at the pool the best ever. Here’s to 2012 – may it be your best season yet.
Happy New Year!
News & Updates
By: Dhwani Shah
After six years of efforts and cost over $1.24 billion to build, Oasis of the Seas is the world’s most expensive and largest ship. Oasis of the Seas is the most expensive ship in history and it is wider, taller, and longer than the largest ocean liner ever built.
Over the years, there have been efforts to create wonders of the seas and the first vessel, built with the sole purpose of cruising, was Prinzessin Victoria Luise in 1900’s. It’s not just the competition that is driving the builders of ocean liners to build massive vessels, but the tourism industry itself. Cruising has now become a major part of the tourism industry worldwide and people have been spending hundreds of thousands of dollars for crafting an experience.
A giant step into the future
Imagine an ocean liner carrying nearly 6,400 passengers. Grand, isn’t it? That is how many passengers can the Oasis of the Seas carry. Oasis of the Seas, owned by Royal Caribbean, is 1,180 feet long, much longer than the prior largest passenger ship and holds the capacity of carrying over 6,400 passengers. The construction of Oasis of the Seas involved a network of nearly 600 subcontractors and provided years of labor to 5,800 man-work. Royal Caribbean’s ships are typically more upscale than those of the bargain Carnival Cruise Lines’ vessels, but they aren’t as traditional as those of luxury carriers such as Cunard.
Make no blunder: Oasis of the Seas will be no clumsy giant. It has three main propellers that will swivel 360 degrees on independent bearings. Everything will be driven by electric motors powered by the ship’s central bank of six diesel generators. The amazing thing is that it will be steered by an integrated navigation and control system, which will make it possible for the captain to move the ship in any direction — forward, backward, sideways — with the flick of a joystick. No tugboats will be required.
Now the wow thing is that, the cruising tourism has accounted for U.S. $29.4 billion and carried over 19 million passengers worldwide in 2011. The swift growth has made it possible for the industry to see nine and more newly built ships catering to a North American clientele, which has kept adding every year since 2001 and others servicing European clientele. Older ships generally service smaller markets, such as the Asia-Pacific region, while the new ships are a trend of the areas with higher growth in the tourism industry.
That means more entertainment options and better amenities
Cruise ships are a comparatively new phenomenon, born from reinventing many of the passenger liners made redundant by affordable air travel. Cruise ships quickly evolved into purpose-built five star hotels, commencing with refitted ocean liners, and then being the biggest vessels having the most on-board amenities.
With its goal of bringing the best of the land to sea, Oasis of the Seas presents its passengers with features such as luxury suites and two-story loft suites measuring 1,600 sq ft with balconies overlooking the sea or walkways. The ship has a casino, a zip-line, a mini-golf course, multiple nightclubs, a karaoke club, several bars and lounges, volleyball and basketball courts, comedy club, five swimming pools, theme parks and nurseries for children.
News & Updates
The National Drowning Prevention Alliance (NDPA) and USA Swimming are co-sponsoring a national competition in search of the 2011 Lifesaver of the Year. The nomination period, originally set to close on November 30, has been extended through December 16 in response to numerous requests.
“Most of the year we concentrate on the unacceptable number of lives lost due to this preventable tragedy,” said Kim Burgess, NDPA executive director. “So it’s wonderful to focus on those whose heroic actions prevented a tragedy. These inspiring stories will remind us all that one person can make an enormous difference in the world.”
Nominators should visit http://www.facebook.com/NationalDrowningPreventionAlliance, click the “Lifesaver of the Year” contest tab on the left and upload a photo and essay about the nominee. The essay should detail the nominee’s heroism in a water-related incident. Lifeguards, first responders or laypersons may be nominated.
The winner will receive an all-expense paid trip for two to San Diego, CA where he or she will be honored at the 11th annual National Drowning Prevention Symposium set for March 7-10, 2012. For more information, or to register for the symposium, please visit http://www.NDPA.org.
NDPA and USA Swimming Foundation will select ten finalists. Public voting will begin January 4, 2012 and votes will be collected for one month.
For more information, go to www.facebook.com/NationalDrowningPreventionAlliance.
News & Updates
From Marco Polo to Sharks and Minnows, poolgoers have enjoyed playing innovative water games for generations. Even games like basketball and volleyball have been adapted to the pool by enterprising citizens.
One such citizen recently developed a water polo-type game called “Skwim” in which opposing teams attempt to score a frisbee-like disc into a goal at either end of the pool. The game’s creator, Kevin McCarthy of Sammamish, WA, is betting on the widespread adoption of his new game and judging by early returns, Skwim is a huge hit with the kids.
To master the art of Skwim, one must become proficient at advancing toward the goal by skipping the specially-designed disc across the surface of the pool like a stone. Players also wear unique oval-toed fins – also designed by McCarthy – to help them effectively dart around the pool while trying to score a goal or prevent the other team from doing the same.
In Washington State, the game has become such an instant hit that inter-school Skwim competitions are now being held. McCarthy hopes that his creation is accepted as warmly all across the country, and it certainly seems like he has a fighting chance.
An invention happens when an entrepreneurial mind has an idea and sticks with it until fruition. Skwim is such a creation, and it is beneficial for its players in several ways. “It’s a great sport for kids to be safe, and it’s a great fitness sport for all ages,” McCarthy said. “My goal for Skwim is to have it played everywhere in the world.”
Whether this happens or not, it seems that Skwim isn’t going away any time soon. Give it a try at your local pool; who knows, it just might help get your creative juices flowing.
Originally posted on http://www.dailypilot.com/news/tn-dpt-1127-apodaca-20111126,0,7206457.story
News & Updates
Ten years ago, when you stepped up to a vending machine, your options may have included chips, candy bars, soda and gum. But snack dispensers have evolved (and nutrition initiatives have been put in place) so your diet may not be in as much danger the next time you walk into a breakroom with a crisp dollar bill to ease your mid-afternoon growling stomach.
Health professionals lie on both the “pro” and “con” side of the more nutritious vending debate – supporters say it never hurts to have better options, while those who oppose claim vending machines are only one brick in a mile-long wall of nutrition problems.
Besides populating break rooms, vending machines are also mainstays in school cafeterias. Currently, 27 states have rules about what can be sold in elementary school vending machines, the New York Times reports. So it’s no surpise that new companies are popping up to fill the space left behind by the machines that don’t fit the new food rules.
Continue reading at http://www.fitnessmagazine.com/blogs/fitstop/tag/healthy-vending-machines/
News & Updates
As Ryan Lochte accepted his award for the Male Race of the Year at USA Swimming’s Golden Goggles Sunday night, he pulled a typical Ryan Lochte move: he nearly dropped the trophy.
One estimate says the hardware is worth in the range of $1500, so it was a good thing Lochte caught it before it fell to the floor.
“I got it, don’t worry,” Lochte told the crowd after knocking the trophy off the podium.
Lochte’s laid-back and carefree attitude has been well documented, as the Floridian likes to enjoy life and not take anything too seriously. That included dancing on the red carpet and pointing and posing for the cameras, and later showing Missy Franklin some dance moves after the pair took home the Men’s and Women’s Athlete of the Year honors.
“I told everyone I will stop swimming once I stop having fun. And honestly, I don’t see that ever happening,” Lochte said. “I’m having so much fun with swimming, it’s a blast.”
Having a blast with the sport is exactly why Lochte is the best swimmer in the world. He’s won the last three Male Athlete of the Year awards at the Golden Goggles, and this summer he broke the first long-course world record since high-tech swimsuits were banned at the start of 2010.
Continue reading at http://www.universalsports.com/news-blogs/blogs/blog=splashed/postid=567863.html
News & Updates
When looking for employment, candidates will do just about anything to get noticed. From wearing their nicest suits to sharing their portfolios, applicants know they must stand out from the crowd to land a coveted position.
We all know that a bad resume can be the kiss of death at a job interview, but a great resume can have the opposite effect. I’m not talking about your education, skills or recent employment history; the actual design of your resume can perform wonders when it comes to creating separation between you and other qualified candidates.
Whether printed on a milk carton or written out in a spiral, original resume can be a valuable tool with the right company. Check out these 14 exotic resumes and spur your creativity!
Originally posted on http://www.businessinsider.com/coolest-resumes-2011-7