Junior Lifeguard Academy Facebook Q&A

If you were unable to join our Junior Lifeguard Academy Facebook Q&A chat with our Aquatic Technical Team on 23rd September, you can catch up on everything that happened here.

Here are the questions:

Boogie Board is a new skill to me and I am worried about how the skill should be done.

Even if a swimming teacher is eligible to RPL across they are welcome to attend the Junior Lifeguard CPD, as part of the CPD candidates will take part in a pool session which goes through water polo, rescue tube, fin swimming and boogie board skills. Also after attending the CPD candidates will be able to teach the Junior Medic Awards.

To assist instructors on poolside, the Junior Lifeguard resource manual offers clear instructions on how each skill should be performed with clear photos. The resource manual is printed on waterproof paper so it can be taken and used on poolside. Instructors can allow Junior Lifeguards to look through the manual on poolside to help them with their understanding of the skills.

To offer continuous support, the online Junior Lifeguard resource section contains skills videos so instructors are able to see how skills are performed. For instant access, in the polices and notes section of the manual there is a waterproof QR code resource sheet, instructors download a QR code reader on to their smart phone or tablet, scan the desired code and can instantly watch the selected video. Instructors can show the video to the Junior Lifeguards so they can see how the skill should be performed.

Why is synchronised swimming and water polo part of the Junior Lifeguard Programme?

STA want to offer variety to older swimmers who want to continue swimming but may not want to join a competitive swimming  club. By offering a wide range of different missions such as Seascooter, snorkelling, water polo, synchro and more we are hoping to show the diversity in aquatic activities and retain their interest for longer.

Most importantly, many skills used in synnchronised swimming and water polo can easily be transferred to lifesaving. Missions have been carefully constructed to ensure Junior Lifeguards are building and developing these skills throughout all programmes.

How can I incorporate the Junior Lifeguard Academy into my current lessons, as I cannot get any more pool space of time?

The Junior Lifeguard Academy has been designed in bite-size chunks which can be delivered as a one-off or over a period of time. Instructors have the flexibility to pick and choose the order of the missions to suit them and their learners.

To incorporate into current lessons, you could pick alternate weeks to deliver elements of the programme, such as one week on rescue skills – working towards Seal 1, the following week return to normal swimming lessons with the contrasting activity as Boogie Board, building skills to complete the Boogie Board award. This would be one way to work the Junior Lifeguard Academy into lessons. STA has developed six sample lesson plans which are based on an hour-long session, these can be downloaded from your STA Online account – you could use these lesson plans to help you.

If you’re unable to integrate into current lessons, the programmes can be delivered as part of a holiday activity scheme. A one-day Junior Lifeguard camp, in the morning; a pool session looking at rescue tub skills, fin swimming and communication followed by a dry side Junior Medic first aid session. In the afternoon, back into the pool for Boogie Board, water polo and snorkelling. On completion of the day Junior Lifeguards are awarded with one of the mission certificates which they completed during the day.

Do I have to complete one mission per week or only work towards one mission at a time?

No, the Academy has been designed for flexibility for Instructors and ease-of-use. You can work towards three different awards at one time and you choose the order in which your Junior Lifeguards complete the missions.

The six sample lessons plans can give you an idea on how to structure your lessons. These are available on your STA Online account.

What is the President’s Seal Award?

The President’s Seal Award is the top award in the Junior Lifeguard Academy. In order for the Junior Lifeguards to receive this award they must complete Seal awards 1 – 5 and ten other missions, of which one must come from each strand.

Once a Junior Lifeguard has received this award, it does not mean they cannot continue with the programme, there will still be thirty other missions for them to complete.

This would be ideal for the Scout, Brownies and Guide groups that use my pool, but they would not want to do all the awards – they only have one session?

For schools and community groups such as Scouts, Brownies or Cadets, the Community Safety Award is ideal. The Community Safety Award is an amalgamation of all the key areas of lifesaving such as rescue skills, personal survival skills, first aid and resuscitation combined into one award. This award looks at how to save yourself, how to save someone else, how to deliver first aid and how to perform resuscitation. There is a detailed ticksheet for the Community Safety Award which can be found within the ticksheets at the back of the resource manual.

Who can deliver the Junior Medic programme?

If you attend the Junior Lifeguard CPD you will then be able to teach the Junior Lifeguard Medic series (you will not be qualified to deliver first aid). Alternatively if you hold an Emergency First Aid at Work, First Aid at Work or a Lifeguard qualification, you will automatically be eligible to deliver the Junior Medic series.

What order do the series of badges go from STARFISH to Junior Medic to Platinum?

The Junior Lifeguard awards are separate to the STA International Learn to Swim programme awards. Once learners have completed their 50m swim unaided they can start to complete Junior Lifeguard awards, so after Shark 1.

STA’s International Learn to Swim Programme awards order is:

STARFISH > STAnley > Octopus > Goldfish > Angelfish > Shark > Advanced Swimmer (Bronze > Silver > Gold) > Platinum

We then have supporting awards to motivate learners and recognise achievement in specialist areas such as:

  • Kingfisher awards (Diving)
  • Seal awards (Personal Survival)
  • Competitive Starts and Turns

We also have a range of Good Stroke stickers and STAnley stickers. If you would like more information on the awards and the learning outcomes you can purchase the STA International Learn to Swim Programme resource manual online.

The Junior Lifeguard awards can be completed in any order which suits you. The Seal awards, Distance awards and any awards which have a 1 and 2 award are progressive, however the other missions contain skills and challenges relevant to that mission, so can be completed in any order. For example, you could do Junior Medic First Aid 1 and then Junior Medic Resus 1 before completing First Aid 2. In the sample lesson plans we focus on completing Seal 1 and Communication Skills 1 over the first six weeks, however we also cover skills from Boogie Board Pool, Rescue Tube, Water Polo, Junior Medic and Diving.

With there being Seal awards in the International Learn to Swim Programme and now Seal 1 – 4 and President’s Seal in the Junior Lifeguard programme, won’t this confuse people?

STA is planning to rename the ILSP Seal awards to ‘Dolphin’; however we only recently release the new Success Tracker and didn’t want our customers to lose stock. Therefore the name change will happen in the coming months. When ordering Junior Lifeguard awards there is a separate online section to reduce confusion. We will monitor this and respond accordingly.

Is there any Junior Lifeguard branded merchandise I can buy to sell to my learners?

Yes, we have branded water bottles, lanyards and bags for the Junior Lifeguards. You can purchase them through the STA Swim-Shop. We also have all the equipment needed for teaching the Junior Lifeguard programme, including Boogie Boards, snorkels, masks, fins, water polo balls etc. – again all available through the STA Swim-Shop.

Thank you for all the questions, and look out for more Q&As on our Facebook page.

Happy teaching!

– STA Aquatic Technical Team

Community, Swimming Teaching

Join Our Mailing List

Stay up-to-date with the latest STA and leisure industry news by subscribing to our mailing list!


Are you looking for a job in leisure or have a vacancy you want to advertise for FREE?