- AGE REQUIREMENT
To enroll in the BSA Lifeguard course you
must be at least 14 years of age or have completed the eighth grade.
To enroll in the BSA Lifeguard course,
- Swim 400 yards. Jump feetfirst into water over your
head and swim continuously for 400 yards in a strong manner. The 400
yards shall consist of a minimum of 50 yards of elementary backstroke;
50 yards of breaststroke; 50 yards of front crawl or trudgen; and 50
yards of sidestroke.
- Surface dive. Perform both a feet-first and a
head-first (tuck or pike) surface dive in 8 to 10 feet of water and
recover a 10-pound weight on each dive.
- Float. Demonstrate the ability to rest by floating.
- Dive. Perform a long, shallow dive.
- AQUATIC SKILLS
Perform each of the following aquatics
- Perform a long, shallow dive into deep water and
swim an approach stroke 25 yards in 20 seconds or less.
- Throw a line for accuracy 10 yards, three times in
one minute. The line may be weighted, unweighted, or attached to a
- Perform a rescue of a swimmer using a watercraft
common to your area. Explain how other watercraft can be used to
perform a rescue. Explain the advantages and disadvantages of
different craft in making rescues.
- Perform each of the following rescues with the aid
of a rescue tube:
- Perform a swimming extension rescue. Using a
front approach, swim with the rescue tube 15 yards to a distressed
swimmer; extend the rescue tube to the victim; have the victim grasp
it; and tow the victim back to the starting point in the water.
- Perform an active drowning victim rear rescue.
Using a rear approach, swim with the rescue tube 15 yards to a
conscious/active but not struggling victim; Place the victim on the
tube by using a "scooping technique and tow the victim back to the
- Perform an passive drowning victim rear rescue.
Using a rear approach, swim with the rescue tube 15 yards to face
down victim; squeeze the rescue tube between your chest and the
victim's back, role the victim face up and tow the victim back to
the starting point in the water.
- Perform an passive drowning victim front rescue.
Approach a face-down, unconscious victim from the front; Reaching
across the rescue tube, grasp the victim's wrist and rotate the
victim into the rescue tube. Clamp the victim to the tube with your
other arm and tow the victim back to the starting point.
- Perform a submerged victim rescue. Approach until
you are over the victim and do a feet-first surface dive. Using the
rescue tube between your chest and the victim's back, move the
victim to the starting point.
- Perform a swimming rescue of a distressed or active
victim using a flotation aid other than a rescue tube. Demonstrate an
appropriate entry and approach stroke for 15 yards and the tow the
victim to the starting point.
- Perform a stride jump into water at least 9 feet
deep; swim 15 yards to an unconscious victim; use a front surface
approach; position the victim for a wrist tow; and use a wrist tow to
return the victim to the starting point in the water.
- Perform a long shallow dive into water at least 9
feet deep; swim 15 yards to beyond the victim; position the victim in
either a single- or double-armpit tow; and tow the victim to the
starting point in the water.
- Perform a compact jump into water at least 9 feet
deep; using a rear approach swim 15 yards to an active victim; contact
the victim and level the victim using a single- or double-armpit tow;
position the victim in a cross-chest carry; and return to the starting
point in the water.
- Perform the following defenses and escapes:
- Wrist-grip escape
- Rear head-hold escape
- Front head-hold escape
- Remove the victim from the water using each of the
following techniques, in the appropriate circumstances:
- Lift from the water using a backboard and two
- Walking assist
- Beach drag
- Perform an ease-in entry in shallow water and
approach a victim who is facedown on the surface and simulating a
spinal injury. Turn the victim to a faceup position and support the
victim at the surface.
- Perform an ease-in entry in deep water and approach
a victim who is floating facedown on the surface and simulating a
spinal injury. With a rescue tube, turn the victim to a faceup
position and, maintaining contact, swim with the victim to a corner of
the pool or the shallow end of the pool. Repeat without a rescue tube.
- As a team member, participate in a back-boarding
procedure in shallow water.
- Demonstrate the proper use of mask, snorkel, and
- FIRST AID AND CPR
- Show evidence of the ability to perform the skills
and a knowledge of basic first aid.
- Show a knowledge of the procedures for the
universal precautions for bloodborne pathogens.
- Hold current certification in basic cardiopulmonary
resuscitation (CPR) from the American Heart Association, the American
Red Cross, or the National Safety Council.
- Demonstrate an understanding of aquatics program
and emergency management skills by correctly answering 80 percent of
the questions in a written or oral exam on theory and knowledge
(standard BSA Lifeguard examination).
- SUPERVISED LIFEGUARDING
Serve as a lifeguard, under supervision,
for at least two swimming activities (2 to 3 hours total).