Evaluation and Orientation
To ensure all participants’ safety during an event where each individual’s capabilities are unknown, Backyard Lifeguards uses a nationally-recognized method of aquatic assessment.
- As guests arrive, lifeguards will introduce themselves to swimmers and briefly orient them to the pool and rules.
- For children ages 4 to 12, an evaluation of each child’s skill includes a quick activity to measure swimming comfort and proficiency, then a color-coded wristband.
- Any child age 3 or younger, or any child who cannot swim AND cannot touch the bottom in the shallow end, must be accompanied by an adult wearing a swimsuit in close proximity in the water, or will be required to wear a US Coast Guard-approved life vest, which Backyard Lifeguards will provide.
- Please note that all other foam and air-filled flotation aids will be permitted only with direct adult in-water supervision.
The “Test & Vest” Method
Swimmers will be asked to demonstrate the following basic skills independently in shallow water:
Swim two widths of the pool continuously on front with face in water
Float on back continuously with face out of the water for 20 seconds
Skill designation is at the sole discretion of the lifeguard/s on duty and based on the following guidelines:
- Participants that successfully demonstrate these skills will be issued a blue wristband, indicating permission to swim in deep water.
- Participants that demonstrate these skills with some difficulty will be issued a yellow wristband, indicating permission to swim in shallow water.