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National Pool Lifeguard Qualification (NPLQ) Overview
The RLSS UK National Pool Lifeguard Qualification (NPLQ) is the most awarded lifeguard qualification in the United Kingdom and Ireland that complies with the industry guidance contained within the HSE publication 'Managing Health and Safety in Swimming Pools' Generally, the NPLQ is a recruitment requirement for a number of jobs from Pool Lifeguard to Centre Manager. On successful completion of the course you will be fully qualified to work as a Pool Lifeguard nationwide.
The RLSS UK NPLQ is not just a qualification it can be a stepping stone into a career within the leisure industry. The NPLQ and associated courses are administered by IQL UK Ltd, a trading subsidiary of the Royal Life Saving Society.
The NPLQ course duration is 36 -38 hours split over 3 Sections:
- The Lifeguard, Swimming Pool and Supervision
- Intervention, Rescue and Emergency Action Plan
- CPR, AED and First Aid
The NPLQ is awarded upon successful completion of all sections following assessment on all subjects. The course comprises of physical training and theoretical classroom work, followed by a practical in-water and out-of-water assessment on pool rescue, first aid, CPR and lifesaving skills.
The qualification is internationally recognised and is incorporated on the Qualifications Framework at Level 2. The NPLQ is valid for 2 years from the date of issue and a further 20 hours of ongoing training and competency assessment must be completed before a lifeguard can renew their qualification prior to the expiry of their existing award.
Benefits of becoming a lifeguard
We think there are loads of great reasons why you'd want to become a lifeguard and we guess you must think it's a pretty good idea too, which is why you are here...
Reasons why we think you'd love it...
- First and foremost you are providing an amazing public service. You will without a doubt make people feel confident, happier and safer just by being on the poolside and you could potentially save a life.
- Being a lifeguard offers a fantastic foundation to a career in the leisure industry. Many senior managers began their rise to leisure stardom by lifeguarding at their local pools.
- The opportunity to get fit. Not only will you have to have a basic level of fitness to become a lifeguard but you will be encouraged to stay fit and get fitter. Many pools will give their lifeguards discounted or even free memberships.
- You get to work with a team of like minded people, so there's plenty of opportunity to increase your social circle!
- The hours are flexible and perfect for those of you who need to fit studying into your busy days.
- If you're a competitive type there is plenty of opportunity to show off your lifeguarding talents in annual events such as the National Pool Lifeguard Championships (team event) and the Lifeguard Triathlon.
- If you find you really enjoy lifeguarding you can take it up as a competitive sport and compete regularly for your local club.
- Lastly but still very importantly, you will gain a life skill that will come in handy for the rest of your life that could lead to enhanced career progression and a stepping stone to the National Pool Management Qualification (NPMQ).
Every candidate, prior to commencement of training for the NPLQ must:
- Be 16 years of age;
- Be able to meet the following basic fitness criteria:-
- Jump / dive into deep water
- Swim 50 metres in less than 60 seconds
- Swim 100 metres continuously on front and back in deep water.
- Tread water for 30 seconds
- Surface dive to the floor of the pool at its deepest point
- Climb out unaided without ladder / steps and where the pool design permits