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8 Popular Lies About Lifeguard Certification Courses | American Lifeguard Events

8 Popular Lies About Lifeguard Certification Courses

Each summer, thousands of young adults seek out lifeguard certification classes hoping to land a job watching the pool or beach. However, many would-be lifeguards are discouraged by myths and misinformation about what’s actually involved in getting certified. In this article, we’ll explore 5 common lies told about the American Lifeguard Association certification and set the record straight.

Lie #1: You need to already be an elite athlete to pass the test

While lifeguard certification near me¬†certainly need to be fit, you don’t need to be a world-class swimmer to get certified. The ALA test includes a 300 yd continuous swim, treading water for 2 minutes, and retrieving a 10lb brick from the deep end. With regular lap swimming and some practice treading, most average athletes can pass this evaluation with time to spare. Where candidates often fail is lack of preparation – not inadequate ability. Consistent training is key, not superhuman feats.

Lie #2: The written exam is impossibly hard

Another discouragement is rumored difficult written exams. In reality, the 50 question multiple choice test covers basic water rescue principles that are thoroughly reviewed in ALA course materials. As long as you study the provided study guide and pay attention during live saving demonstrations, scoring above the minimum 80% is very attainable. The questions aren’t trick questions and straightforwardly assess your understanding of protocols. Don’t let worries of failing the written scare you away – many pass on the first try with due preparation.

Lie #3: You need years of experience in the water

While some lifeguard experience can be beneficial, certification classes are designed for all experience levels so no past experience is actually required. The ALA teaches all water rescue skills from the ground up during the 2-week course. As long as candidates give their full focus and engagement during hands-on practice, anyone can learn entry-level lifeguarding abilities. Experience in other types of swimming is transferable enough to pick up techniques efficiently. The class is an excellent way for beginners to break into this in-demand summer career.

Lie #4: It’s too expensive to certify

With some classes costing well over $300, the alleged high price of certification does deter some. However, many affordable options exist if you compare prices. The ALA works with a network of training centers nation-wide where introductory courses typically range from $150-250, covering all materials, instruction, and certification exam. Furthermore, most teenage lifeguards have their employer reimburse training costs. For dedicated students, payment plans can also make the class more financially feasible. With a bit of shopping around, it’s completely possible to certify for under $200. The investment truly pays off in securing a summer job.

Lie #5: It’s so competitive to get a lifeguard job

On the contrary, with more beaches and pools opening every season, the demand for reliable certified lifeguards has never been greater. At average local pools, over 50% of positions annually turn over so opportunities constantly arise. Employers also appreciate the responsibility demonstrated by certification attainment. While popular employers in specific regions may receive hundreds of applications, other areas struggle to find qualified candidates. With certification in hand, networking, a strong application, and eagerness to work any available shifts can lead to multiple offers. Especially for returners, rehiring is common. Be proactive and emphasizing dependability gets many new guards hired for their first or following seasons with ease.

Lie #6: You Must Be At Least 16 Years Old

It’s a widespread myth that the minimum age requirement for lifeguard certification is 16 across the board. In truth, age requirements can vary depending on state laws and the type of facility or organization. For basic pool lifeguard certification through the Red Cross, 15 is usually the minimum. And some facilities allow 14-year-olds to lifeguard with certain restrictions. At American Lifeguard Events, we certify hundreds of teenagers every summer at 15 years of age or older.

Lie #7: Courses Are Only Offred 9-5 On Weekends

However, American Lifeguard Events and many other training providers offer flexibly scheduled courses on nights and weekends year-round. Our team diligently schedules open certification dates after 5pm and on Saturdays/Sundays throughout the spring, summer, and fall to accommodate different availabilities. So don’t let work or school hours stop you from pursuing lifeguarding – help is always available with alternative class dates.

Lie #8: Certification Expires After a Year

It’s commonly thought that lifeguard certification lasts just one summer season or year after passing certification. The truth is that lifeguard training through the Red Cross results in a two-year certification that is valid for 730 days from the finish date as long as other renewal requirements are met. This allows plenty of flexibility to lifeguard for two+ summers or even year-round. If you want to maintain credentials, simply completing continuing education hours is required rather than retaking full certification courses each time it expires. Some facilities may have their own additional requirements as well. allworldfashionbeauty

Final Words

We hope this article cleared up some of the most pervasive misconceptions around lifeguard certification. Becoming a lifeguard is an impactful career that provides valuable skills training, new experiences, and often scholarship opportunities. Don’t let myths discourage you – contact American Lifeguard Events today to learn more about our lifeguard certification courses near you. We’d love to talk through any other questions and help you start your journey in aquatic safety.

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