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Lifeguard Employment Information

Lifeguard Job Overview Lifeguards provide safety services at pools, beaches, and other swimming facilities. Although ...

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Lifeguard Job Overview

Lifeguards provide safety services at pools, beaches, and other swimming facilities. Although they spend most of their time watching the water for signs of distress, they may have to jump to action at any moment. Some common job duties required of lifeguards include:

  • Supervising swimming areas
  • Enforcing safety rules
  • Preventing accidents
  • Responding to emergency situations
  • Performing CPR and other basic first aid treatments
  • Providing safety feedback to managers

Candidates who enjoy working in a physical environment may want to consider lifeguarding. Potential candidates, however, should consider that many lifeguard jobs require them to spend long hours in the sun. Those who wish to minimize exposure to the sun may want to search for jobs watching over indoor pools.

Lifeguard Job Education Requirements

Nationally, there aren't any educational requirements for someone to become a lifeguard, although some areas may require lifeguards to pass licensing exams. Most businesses will not hire applicants under 16 years old. They may also require certifications in subjects such as CPR and first aid. Several organizations provide training and licensing exams for lifeguards. These organizations include the YMCA, American Lifeguard Association and American Red Cross. Certification may test physical endurance as well as knowledge of safety procedures. Employers with strict hiring requirements often pay their lifeguards more money, but this varies by business and location.

While lifeguards require minimal training, people can use the job to develop useful skills that may help them find employment in areas such as law enforcement security and public safety. These positions require additional training often provided by law enforcement agencies.

Lifeguard Job Market

As of May 2012, there were about 125,770 lifeguards working in the United States. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of lifeguard jobs will increase by 12% from 2010 to 2020. Candidates who want to increase their chances of employment should consider looking in popular tourist destinations. Hotels, apartment complexes, resorts, and fitness centers often hire lifeguards to improve safety at their facilities.

Lifeguard Job Salary Information

In 2013, Lifeguards, along with ski patrol and other recreational protective service workers, earned a median salary of $19,040. The highest paid employees earned just under $30,000 per year. Those at the low end of the salary range earned $16,360. Where a lifeguard works can significantly affect his or her salary. The 2013 annual mean wage for lifeguards in Honolulu, Hawaii was $32,910. Those working in Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, and Santa Ana earned $1,000-$2,000 less. Lifeguards in St. Louis earned significantly less with a mean salary of $17,990.

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