The Skills Test

The last part to becoming a life guard is the skills test.  This is the hardest part for most people taking lifeguarding courses.  The skills test is very unpredictable.  Some times the people you have as a victim can be ether very good or not so good.  This makes both preparing for the skills test very challenging as first.  Since the most important part of any lifeguard’s job is keeping the water safe and protecting possible drowning, it is understandable why the skills test is the most important.  You will use your skills in real life situations and it is important that you work on these as much as you can and as frequently as you can.  These skills will also be used during your job for even while working you are still required to do skills training and tests.

There were two parts of the skills test that were the hardest for me and for most people I know.  These were the brick test and the handholds.  The brick test was when the instructor threw a 10-pound brick into the deepest part of the pool.  For me this was the 12 foot side of the pool.  In under 90 seconds, you had to swim from the shallow part of the pool to the deep end.  Surface dive down and get the brick.  And then swim back with the brick on your crest.  This was the hardest and scariest part for me.  I was not good at holding my breath under water nor was I good at swimming with the brick on my chest.  I practiced and practiced and never once did I get the brick in time.  When it came time for the test I knew I would in trouble.  I went to open swim at my local pool and worked on it some more until I was able to drive down correct and do it.  By shear luck I was able to do it on the first try during the test.  There are definitely more people who felt the same way.  The trick is to never give up.  Also you must take a very long deep breath before going under.  This will give you enough time to go down and get the brick and carry it up to the water.

Lifeguarding Brick

stay safe,

your fellow guard


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