Every year, the areas near the ocean or the open sea attract millions of tourists. Generally speaking, a vast majority of these locations are perfectly safe. However, it wouldn’t hurt people to have an additional layer of protection. That’s why many of these beaches have their own lifeguards, no matter if they are public or private. 

Being a lifeguard doesn’t mean that you should only rescue people. Instead, the core part of the job is to prevent these situations from happening. Between 2005 and 2014, there were roughly 3,500 drownings every year

Many people make the mistake that this job requires only a good swimmer. In fact, we can see that it has a wide array of other requirements. Now, let’s take a look at how to become a lifeguard. Buckle up, and let’s go.

Choose the Certificate

As we’ve said, there are many prejudices about this position. It requires much more than just being a good swimmer. Instead, you will need a particular education, which means that you will need to undergo Lifeguard training. Let’s take a look at a couple of different types of certifications you can apply for.

  • Lifeguarding – Completing it makes it possible for you to work at pools.
  • Waterfront lifeguarding – You can work at ponds and lakes.
  • Waterpark lifeguarding – Enables you to work at waterparks.
  • Surf lifeguarding – Completing this one means you can work on all others. But the main idea is that you can work on the beachfront.

Start the Education

After you have made your mind about which one of these you will enroll in, ask around about those you can find in the area near you. Depending on the course you have chosen, it can have various lengths. 

However, we can see that the average amount of time is between fifteen and thirty hours. When it comes to how much money you need to invest, the price is between $100 and $300. Before you are ready to start working, there are three distinct tests you need to complete.

  • Basic Training
  • Professional Rescuer Training
  • First Aid

What are Your Obligations?

As we’ve mentioned, the most significant task for every lifeguard is to prevent dangerous situations. It means they need to warn the visitors about the upcoming dangers. For instance, we are talking about big waves that are about to hit the shore. 

For them to do that, it is an absolute must for them to monitor the situation carefully, both the situation and visitors. While this job might seem simple, there is more to it than meets the eye. Monitoring the beach for eight hours straight is no walk in the park. 

Especially when you need to look at many different factors. That’s why the highest majority of facilities have the practice of rotating the lifeguards. That way, their personnel will stay fresh all day. So, they can act fast when they are needed the most.

How Much You Can Make?

Now that all the basic steps are behind you, you are interested in how much a lifeguard makes. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, you can make $27,050 per year on average. But you need to be aware that a high number of lifeguards are not fully employed. Therefore, this amount is not something you should count on if you don’t work full time.

People are More Dangerous Than Water

Now, we’ve got to the crucial part of our story. Sure, lifeguards are perfectly sure of their abilities. However, the hard part comes when you actually get out there. A majority of people will reject your help. Simply because they don’t think they need it. 

Plus, there is a chance that those who are drunk will be aggressive towards you. Or little kids can panic and make your job much harder to pull off. As you can see, this is the part of the job that will require you to stay calm and think about how you can resolve the situation. 

The first thing you should do is swim out to them and provide them with a flotation device they can grab onto. When they are calm enough to listen to your commands, you should slowly swim towards the beach.


Becoming a lifeguard is a much more complex task than many people believe it is. Here, you can take a look at some of the most important steps you need to cover. Furthermore, you can see what are some of the most significant parts of this job.