Summer is coming and there are opportunities to be paid while being at the beach, lake or poolside. If you've ever dreamed of helping keep others safe while also being paid, than being a lifeguard this summer might just be the job for you. Many employers are offering FREE training and raising the hourly pay from $10 to $30 per hour!
A nationwide shortage of lifeguards has water parks, camps, and municipalities scrambling to hire thousands to staff swimming pools, lakes, and beaches.
Lindsay Mondick who oversees aquatics and other initiatives for the YMCA of the U.S.A. has said that...
"In many parts of the country, there were long periods when people could not train, and staff and potential staff did not feel safe to train due to physical distancing guidance,” Now that the vaccine is more readily available to potential lifeguarding candidates, we may see a slow return.”
Lifeguard positions are an excellent second job for adults looking to supplement their income. While these are excellent summer jobs for young people, they also often come naturally to adults who have been working for a number of years.
In fact, many companies prefer to hire adult guards because they were better at remaining focused, weren’t afraid to uphold the rules, and garnered more respect from a growing population of adult patrons. Mondick at the YMCA stressed that lifeguarding also builds important skills such as confidence, leadership and teamwork, which are all strong soft skills that transfer well to any career and look great on a resume.
Because lifeguard positions are skilled positions, they command a higher rate of pay than most other part-time jobs. Depending on your state, the type of facility, the location, and the length of time you’ve been working, rates may vary significantly. In fact, some full-time lifeguards working on the beaches of California can make upwards of +$200k per year.
Of course, such large salaries are the exception to the rule. Most part-time lifeguards working at swimming pools will make between $12-30 per hour, according to Glassdoor.com. Those working in waterfront positions, at water parks, or in supervisory roles may be able to make up to $20 per hour. Just to give you an idea here are some cities and states and what they are currently looking to pay their lifeguards!
Happyswimmers.com in San Francisco: $22 to $30 an hour
The city of Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.: $18.93 to $29.33 an hour for waterfront lifeguards
Hyannis Harbor Hotel in Hyannis, Mass.: $25 an hour
The city of Durham, N.C.: $18 an hour
Sandcastle Water Park near Pittsburgh: $15 an hour
The city of St. Petersburg, Fla. $13.25 to $21
The primary role of a lifeguard is pretty self-explanatory- to guard lives. Lifeguards are trained to effectively scan a body of water and the surrounding area to prevent and respond to emergencies. They are trained in professional rescuer CPR and first aid practices and are taught how to anticipate potential problems before they arise.
However, the job doesn’t end there. Depending on the facility, guards may be required to run the cash register, clean the grounds, clean bathrooms, teach swim lessons, handle customer complaints, and perform other customer service duties as they arise.
Proper certification and training are needed before you can begin. These courses can cost anywhere from $150 to $500, and take upwards of 30 hours to complete. Private training schools, non-profit groups such as the American Red Cross and the YMCA, and employers themselves offer lifeguard training classes throughout the summer.
In order to be a lifeguard, you also MUST be able to swim.
Certification courses require several swimming tests before the class commences, and if you can’t pass the tests, you can’t continue taking the course. Swimming requirements vary by certification type, but at a minimum, you should be able to swim 300 meters (six full laps on a standard 25-meter pool) without resting while using the “rhythmic breathing” technique. Rhythmic breathing is simply the term used when you place your face in the water to exhale before raising it out of the water to inhale. Once you're certified you are ready to begin!
If you have friends who you think might also be interested you can even earn a pretty nice referral bonus! Orange City, Iowa is paying a $20 referral bonus for a lifeguard who gets a friend to join the team at public pools. And the Parks and Recreation Department in Mesquite, Texas will pay $50 for one referral, $75 for two, and $100 for three. So as you apply feel free to ask the employer if there is a referral bonus!
Search for lifeguard positions in your area to get started!
Would you consider a job as a lifeguard?