Aquatic Certifications

Become a lifeguard at the University of Calgary

How to become a lifeguard: 

Step 1: Complete the Lifesaving Society's Bronze Medallion course

Step 2: Complete Bronze Cross course

Step 3: Get your National Lifeguard certification

Please note, the Lifesaving Society's Swim Instructor certification is also required to be employed at the University of Calgary Aquatic Centre.

See our upcoming lifeguard and swim instructor course offerings below. 

UCalgary lifeguard gives thumbs up under water

Aquatic Certifications


National Lifeguard Recertification (NLR)

Part of the Lifesaving Society Lifeguarding Program. Recertification of your National Lifeguard (NL) certification is based on the ability to meet ALL performance criteria laid out by the Lifesaving Society. Candidates are encouraged to practice skills and review knowledge to prepare for the recertification course. Ongoing training and maintaining an appropriate level of fitness is important to being able to lifeguard effectively.

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National Lifeguard

The Lifesaving Society’s National Lifeguard certification builds on the fundamental skills, knowledge, fitness, judgment and values taught in the prerequisite Lifesaving Society lifesaving certifications. The primary role of the National Lifeguard is the prevention of emergency situations and the timely and effective resolution of emergencies. The National Lifeguard certification prepares lifeguards to fulfill this role as professional facilitators of safe, enjoyable aquatics.

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Bronze Medallion/Cross Combined

The Lifesaving Society's Bronze Medallion and Cross course challenges candidates both mentally and physically. Judgement, knowledge, skill, and fitness – the four components of water rescue – form the basis of Bronze Medallion/Cross training. This course emphasizes the importance of teamwork and communication in preventing and responding to aquatic emergencies. Complete two courses for the price of one with this combined camp. 

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Bronze Medallion

The Lifesaving Society's Bronze Medallion course challenges candidates both mentally and physically. Judgement, knowledge, skill, and fitness – the four components of water rescue – form the basis of Bronze Medallion training. This course emphasizes the importance of teamwork and communication in preventing and responding to aquatic emergencies. Bronze Medallion is a prerequisite for assistant lifeguard training in Bronze Cross.

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Bronze Cross

Bronze Cross begins the transition from lifesaving to lifeguarding and prepares candidates for responsibilities as assistant lifeguards. Candidates strengthen and expand their lifesaving skills and begin to apply the principles and techniques of active surveillance in aquatic facilities. Bronze Cross emphasizes the importance of teamwork and communication in preventing and responding to aquatic emergencies.

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Swim Instructor and Lifesaving Instructor

Swim Instructors are responsible for teaching and evaluating candidates participating in the Swim for Life® and Canadian Swim Patrol programs. Lifesaving Instructors are responsible for teaching and evaluating candidates participating in the Canadian Swim Patrol, Bronze Medals, Distinction, Boat Rescue and Lifesaving Society CPR programs. This combined Swim Instructor and Lifesaving Instructor course prepares Instructors to apply the Lifesaving Societies level 1 leadership competencies and strategies while teaching and evaluating.

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