Surf Life Saving GB
SLSGB are the governing body for the UK. They provide a central team of trainers and assessors who offer courses to the 60 plus surf life saving clubs around the country. This ensures a consistent standard throughout and ensures that each club is operating within their guidance. For full details, check their website, www.slsgb.org.uk
Surf Life Saving is an international movement in which children, youths and adults are trained in sea safety and life saving rescue techniques with a view to being able to enjoy sea based activities in a safe and controlled environment. By educating them in understanding the sea such as knowing the tides; looking out for rip currents, sea breezes and wave types whilst building confidence in the water in a variety of sea conditions, it is hoped that they will enjoy all the benefits of the sea while still holding a well-informed respect for it. There are over 60 clubs around the UK and hundreds more overseas.
It sounds a bit serious – is it fun?
Well, the sea is serious, but yes – it is fun! Members are split into groups based on their age and the sessions will include fun beach games, then fun water activities. The learning takes place as part of the fun and before you know it, you can identify an onshore breeze, a spilling wave and a rip current. You could even then learn to rescue an unconscious casualty. It is a great way to make friends and to keep fit in a caring and friendly environment. When you are feeling confident (and only if you want to) you could compete in local, regional, national, or even international competitions. Next stop – New Zealand!!
How does it work?
When you arrive for a session you will be registered and given a club hat. You must keep this on throughout the session as a means of identification. Each week, the sessions will cover different core skills to ensure that you are having a go at both beach and sea activities. Beach activities will include warm up exercises, games, relay races etc.
The sea activities will include wading, dolphin diving, board paddling, rescue techniques and swimming. The coaches will always be on hand to help you and you don’t need to do anything that you feel uncomfortable with.
At the end of the session, the hat is returned and you will be de-registered. It is very important that you follow the code of conduct to ensure that you are behaving in a safe way in order to protect yourself and others in the group.
Can I Progress?
You can progress entirely at your own pace but assessments are made each week to evidence which skills have been taught throughout the lessons which is as much to ensure that coaches are covering the core requirements as well as the participant’s own progression.
If you are progressing through the stages confidently and you are happy to be entered for competitions, the details will be made available and you can apply for inclusion in different events.
Events & Competitions
There are regional, national and international competitions and all of these are available to you if you wish to enter. The standard is high and many who achieve these standards go on to become professional lifeguards. However, if that’s not for you, why not go along to a fun day where it is an opportunity to get all the clubs together and just have a bit of fun in a relaxed atmosphere?
What is Surf Life Saving?
Home Grown Lifeguards
We are fortunate that our Club Captain, Anna Cullen has successfully achieved Trainer/ Assessor status which means that she can train lifeguards in house.
We are proud to announce that club members Mel, Silas and Dave all qualified this year as Lifeguards. This is great news for the club. Sessions cannot be held in the sea unless there are club lifeguards present, the more we have, the better.
Why not have a chat to them and see if this is something you would like to do?