How to get your Lifeguard Certification on Long Island

Lifeguard jobs offer teens 15 and up a great opportunity to earn money while also giving back to the community.

Life guard certification programs are available all over Long Island and, once certified, provide many opportunities for summer work.  Towns often hire life guards to oversee their public pools, country clubs need them for pools, and certified lifeguards are often in demand for house and kids parties.

Surrounded by water and with so many options for swimming, earning a lifeguard certification is a good option for many people, not just those interested in summer jobs.  So what does it take to become a lifeguard?

The lifeguard pre test requires:

  • Applicants must be at least 15 years old and pass specific swim requirements. Some programs require a minimum 16 years of age.
  • Swim 300 yards continuously
  • Tread water for 2 minutes only using the legs.  Often hands are placed under the armpits.
  • Starting in the water, swim 20 yards. Surface dive to a depth of 7 to 10 feet to retrieve a 10-pound brick. Return to the surface and swim 20 yards on the back to return to the starting point. Exit the water without using a ladder or steps.

Providing the applicant is able to pass the pre test, they may take the lifeguard course which takes about 25 hours.  Upon successful completion of the course, students will receive a 2 year Lifeguarding/First Aid/CPR/AED certification.

To find a lifeguard certification course nearby, check these resources:

Nassau County NY Gov (the most affordable program at just $250) – allows you to search nearby programs

Lifeguards play a crucial role in providing a safe environment for people to enjoy water, both in and around the pool and countless lives have been saved by these unsung heroes.

While Memorial Day is this weekend and is often the traditional start of the season, there are always opportunities for lifeguards.  Once you’re certified, be sure to check out local towns such as the Town of North Hempstead, register with programs such as and check out Facebook groups to market your services to parents.


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