The Hampton Lifeguard Association has been helping kids learn about ocean safety for almost 50 years. This program teaches kids water safety and ocean endurance. Junior Lifeguarding is a great way to keep in shape and stay safe in the water while having a fun day at the beach with your friends. Every summer more new faces are seen and less rescues are happening.
Kids, ages 9 to 14, are welcome to take the pre-test at the YMCA every Sunday in the spring. In this test you must be able to swim 50 yards, tread water for five minutes and swim underwater for 10 to 15 yards. It's not as hard as it sounds. You will be evaluated on how well you are able to do each stroke and your final, the most important test, is to swim four laps under 2 minutes, 15 seconds. You can retake this test as many times as you need to before summer, so no worries!
The summer program is held every weekend at three beaches on the East End. When you arrive at one these beaches kids are split into groups based on age and each group is given an instructor for the summer. Every weekend, your endurance is tested through land and water activities. Although there is healthy competition, the main point of each activity is to have fun! These activities include paddleboard races, distance swims, obstacle courses, soccer, capture the flag and more. In each activity no one is left behind and we all support one another to do our best.
After practicing all summer, the program ends with a tournament held at Indian Wells Beach in Amagansett. The three beaches of the East Endcome to compete against one annother. Every summer a team of dedicated junior lifeguards go to the National Junior Lifeguard Association competition where they represent their beach and compete against other beaches from around the country. Nationals are a lot of fun because we get to go to a different state every year and meet new people.
Junior Lifeguarding is an excellent training program for kids who want to become lifeguards someday. Find out more: hamptonlifeguardassociation.com.