Safety Afloat/Safe Swim Defense
- Programs provide leaders with an overview of the BSA’s policies and procedures for aquatics safety
- Both courses typically covered in a one-hour session
- Certification good for three years
- All unit aquatics activities MUST be supervised by a leader with a minimum of this training
BSA Aquatics Supervision: Swimming & Water Rescue (New Course)
- Provides leaders with information and in-the-water skills to prevent, recognize, and respond to swimming emergencies during unit swimming activities.
- Expands awareness instruction provided by Safe Swim Defense training to include basic water rescue skills
- The unit leader completing the training will be prepared to conduct the standard BSA swim classification tests
- Revised Safe Swim Defense guidelines recommend that at least one person with this training is present to assist with supervision whenever a unit swims at a location that does not provide lifeguards.
- The course will take one day, and is valid for three years
- Typically, personal skill development and hints on teaching basic Scout aquatics requirements will be included
- You must be ready to pass the BSA Swimmer test – 100 yards, including a resting back stroke, and crawl, side, or breast stroke
- Minimum age for participants is 16
BSA Aquatics Supervision: Paddle Craft Safety (New Course)
- Companion course expands on Safety Afloat training to include the basic skills and knowledge needed for a unit leader to supervise most float trips using canoes
- Development of personal canoeing skills is emphasized
- Typically, additional merit badge skills and teaching tips will also be covered
- Course reviews the additional training and experience needed for whitewater, how to gain that expertise, and when it is appropriate to utilize professional whitewater guides
- Whitewater skills are not taught in this course
- The training will take one day and is valid for three years
- Those taking the course must be ready to pass the BSA Swimmer test
- The minimum age for participants is 16
- You must complete both Swimming & Water Rescue and Paddle Craft Safety to be BSA Aquatics Supervision certified.
The emphasis of BSA Lifeguard has changed. The primary purpose is no longer to provide units with the skills necessary to conduct safe swimming and boating activities. The revised BSA Lifeguard program is now focused on providing camp staff with training that meets the requirements for professional lifeguards at regulated swimming venues. While the program is open to all registered adults and older youth, the training emphasis is changed, and the course logistics and content will reflect the new goals. The course requires approximately 20 hours of instruction. Prior to taking the course, participants must be able to swim 550 yards using several strokes, and complete a timed swimming “rescue” of 25 yards.