Open Water Lifeguard Course

Award Description

Open Water Lifeguard (OWL) Qualification

Open water swimming is one of the fastest-growing sports in the UK. The OWL qualification has been specifically designed to equip Open Water Lifeguards with the skills required to supervise and provide rescue cover for planned, organised and risk assessed activities in still or non-tidal water.

The OWL course requires a minimum of 18 hours of training followed by a practical assessment.

Course Pre-Requisites:

Every candidate attending an OWL course must: 

  • Be 16-years-old or over at the time of assessment
  • Be competent and confident in open water
  • Be able to submerge under the water confidently
  • Be able to swim at least 400 metres in a pool/open water, swimming continuously on their front and showing urgency.

Course Content:

There are three sections to the course, and a candidate must pass all three to attain the qualification.

Section 1 – The Open Water Lifeguard, environment, hazards and supervision
Section 2 – Responding to an emergency and taking action
Section 3 – CPR and First Aid

The course will included timed swims when you are assessed.  These are:

1.  Swim 20m and tow a casualty 20m with a torpedo buoy within 85 secs.

2.  Swim 20 and tow a simulated unconcious casualty 10m with 65 secs.

A wetsuit is recommended