Working as a lifeguard can be a rewarding summer job or career path for many. It allows you to stay active, learn important safety skills, and help ensure others enjoy water activities safely. However, with the pace of modern life and availability of online learning, some may question if enrolling in a Traditional Lifeguard Training class close to home is still necessary. After all, can’t you just watch some online videos and learn the skills that way?

While online and distance learning options have expanded opportunities for many types of training, there are still good reasons why taking a live, in-person lifeguard class within your local area remains an important part of certification. Here are a few:

Hands-on Skills Practice

Book knowledge only gets you so far when it comes to safety skills that may need to be employed in a real emergency. Lifeguard classes near me allow for extensive hands-on practice of skills like in-water rescues, CPR, use of safety equipment, spinal cord management, and other physical techniques. Being able to demonstrate your competency correctly to an instructor is a crucial part of the certification process. Online videos simply can’t replace the value of practicing important lifesaving maneuvers until you have them mastered.

Scenario Training

Related to hands-on skills is scenario-based training. Part of any lifeguard class involves practicing your response to simulated in-water emergencies. This could include responding to a patron in need of assistance, treating injuries, directing others during an incident, and calling emergency personnel when needed. Going through scenarios allows you and your instructor to identify any areas needing improvement outside of typical skills testing. It helps prepare you to think and respond quickly when real situations occur.

Career Networking

Beyond certification, lifeguard classes are a way to meet others interested in the field. Your classmates and instructors may help you learn about local job or volunteer opportunities as lifeguards. Many aquatic facilities also use lifeguard classes as a way to identify and interview potential new hires. Networking and creating connections with your local aquatic community is very beneficial as you pursue a job or career in this area.

The American Lifeguard Standard

American Lifeguard Events is a leading provider of in-person lifeguard certification classes throughout the United States. All of their classes are taught according to the American Lifeguard standard – the gold standard for lifeguard training in North America. The American Lifeguard standard ensures lifeguards receive a well-rounded education that goes beyond basic skills. Classes focus on judgment, professionalism, professional rescuing, scanning techniques, emergency plans, documentation, and partnership with emergency medical services.

Instructors with American Lifeguard Events go above and beyond to create realistic training scenarios that prepare students for all types of aquatic facilities and weather conditions. Students practice rescues in deep and shallow water, learn to make difficult judgment calls, and get accustomed to stressful emergency situations.

Local Water Familiarity

Pool setups, rules, and even ocean or lake conditions can vary significantly depending on your location. Taking a class close to where you hope to work allows you to gain familiarity with the specific bodies of water and facilities in your local area. This includes learning any unique safety policies, procedures, signs, signals and terminology used. Being unfamiliar with local weather patterns, tides, or underwater hazards could hinder your abilities as a lifeguard during an actual emergency.

Convenience and Support

The flexibility and convenience of an online program may seem appealing. However, nothing beats being able to immediately ask your instructor questions, get feedback, and access practice facilities conveniently close to home. Local instructors also typically offer Supplemental Skill practice times beyond regular class hours. And they can provide guidance tailored to your individual needs and the types of facilities hiring in your area as you pursue job opportunities.

Stand Out to Employers

When applying for prestigious lifeguard jobs at waterparks, pools, beaches and resorts, your training program means a lot to employers. Facilities want to know their lifeguards received elite level hands-on experience that went beyond basic skills.

Classes through American Lifeguard Events provide that competitive edge. From day one, trainees are immersed in advanced problem-solving scenarios to prepare them for even the most stressful of situations. Instructors expect a high level of leadership, judgement, and teamwork that will impress any would-be employer.

Ongoing Support

It’s not just about the initial certification either. Once certified through American Lifeguard Events, lifeguards join a nationwide network of trained professionals. Instructors provide ongoing tips, skills practice sessions, and educational seminars so skills never get rusty.

The organization also advocates for lifeguarding at the local and national level. With their support, aquatic facilities can enact the most current safety policies and constantly raise industry standards. Lifeguards certified through AME know they are receiving world-class, expert-approved training every step of the way.

Continuing Education Online

For lifeguards who already hold certification, American Lifeguard Events understands staying current is key to long-term success. Their online campus provides continuing education year-round on topics like EMS integration, aquatic spinal injuries, active shooter response and more. With on-demand video workshops and daily tips sent to mobile devices, recertification hours can be gained even while on the job. Students log progress online to keep accreditations up-to-date. It’s easy, engaging continuing education that keeps skills sharp between in-class sessions.

In Summary

While online learning options may supplement lifeguard training needs for some, enrolling in an in-person class close to where you live remains the best way to fully prepare for certification and job responsibilities. Hands-on skills practice, scenario training, local water familiarity, and career networking are just some reasons why a traditional class format near you continues to be important for aspiring lifeguards. So consider taking a close-to-home lifeguard class if you want to be fully ready to respond effectively and keep water patrons safe in your community.

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