Lifeguard Training FAQs


Q1. What are the prerequisites for the Lifeguard Training Course and why are they needed?

The American Red Cross Lifeguard Training Course has the following prerequisites to ensure that each participant has the maturity and physical capabilities necessary to perform all activities and skills required of a lifeguard:

  1. Minimum 15 years of age by last day of course.
  2. Must swim 300 yards without stopping; 
  3. Tread water for 2 minutes using legs only;
  4. Complete a timed event within 1 minute and 40 seconds; starting in water swim 20 yards, surface dive to depth of 10 feet and retrieve a 10 pound brick, return to surface and swim 20 yards back to starting point, exit the water without using steps or ladder.

Q2. What do I need to bring to the first skill session?

  • Proof of age
  • Face covering
  • Proof of online course completion – screen shot or printed copy
  • Download Course Manuals & Print Training Forms
  • Bathing suit – one-piece swimsuit for females and a rash guard (optional)
  • Towel, sunblock, note pad, pen

Q3. How do I access the online education sessions of the course?

After you have registered and paid for the course you will receive a link one week prior to the first in-person session from the American Red Cross to access the Learning Center with instructions on how to create an account and access the online course. Please note: this online portion MUST BE COMPLETED PRIOR to attending the skill sessions. If you do not see this email, check your junk or spam folders. If you still cannot find the link, please contact Finley Aquatics front desk at 707-543-3760, extension 3.

Q4. After successfully completing the course, how do I get my certification?

After successfully completing all online sessions, all skill sessions, and multiple-choice tests you will receive a digital Lifeguarding/First Aid/CPR/AED certificate which is valid for two years. Your certificate can be accessed through your account at the American Red Cross Learning Center.

Q5. Will course participants have to wear face coverings?

Yes, face coverings are required to be worn at all times right up until entering the water and immediately after exiting the water. NOTE: to keep participants as safe as possible, some in-water skill sessions will require a face covering to be worn.

Q6. How often are you sanitizing frequently touched surfaces?

Frequently touched surfaces are being sanitized prior to facility opening and frequently throughout the day with a sanitizer recommended by the Center for Disease Control.

Q7. How are you keeping classroom and in-water skill sessions safe during the COVID-19 pandemic?

  • Everyone is required to wear a face covering in the classroom, on the deck, and as much as possible in the water.
  • All in-water rescue skills are performed with a water manikin in the role of the drowning victim rather than a live individual.
  • All CPR, AED, and First Aid skills are performed on a manikin rather than a live individual.
  • Weather permitting, all classroom skill sessions will be conducted outside with a minimum of 6-feet of distancing, while requiring a face covering at all times.
  • If necessary (due to weather), indoor classroom skill sessions will have a minimum of 6-feet of distancing between each participant, while requiring a face covering at all times.

Q8. Can we register at the front desk?

Sorry, there is no in-person registration and our Front Desk is CLOSED. All registrations and payments must be done online using the following link:  Safety Training – Lifeguard Training Course

Q9. Do you have locker room or restroom access?

Sorry, locker rooms and restrooms are closed for your safety. A single-use restroom is available that is sanitized nightly and frequently throughout the day. This restroom is available for restroom use ONLY and is NOT available for changing.

Q10. Are we allowed to show up early?

We recommend arriving five minutes before your skill session, ready to swim with your swimsuit on. You will complete your wellness check with staff while waiting in a safe distancing line as swimmers from the prior sessions/activities exit the pool area.

Q11. Are you providing wellness screenings for staff and swimmers?

Yes. All staff and swimmers will need to pass a wellness check on arrival at the pool, which includes the following:

1) In the past 14 days, have you been in contact with anyone confirmed to have COVID-19?

2) In the past 14 days, have you had any of the following symptoms?

  • Cough
  • Fever (temperature above 100.0 degrees Fahrenheit)
  • Chills
  • Sore Throat
  • Feeling Achy
  • Shortness of breath / difficulty breathing
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Unusual or new headache in the last 24 hours
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Tingling or numbness
  • None of the above

3) Temperature check: staff will take your temperature (temperature must be below 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit)

Q12. What if I do not pass the Wellness Check?

If you do not pass the Wellness Check, you will not be allowed to enter the pool area and will need to go to be cleared by your health care provider before returning to the pool. We will attempt to reschedule you for the next course or process a full refund to your account.

Q13. How are you keeping participants’ belongings secure and safe?

All participants’ belongings will remain on the pool deck within each participant’s spacing/distancing marker and safely distanced from other participants.

Q14. Can I take a shower on deck before or after I swim?

Yes, participants may rinse off at our outdoor shower while maintaining safe distancing from others.