15 students from Warwick University Lifesaving Club successfully completed the physically challenging National Beach Lifeguard Qualification in St. Ives, Cornwall in July 2013.
All participants (including two additional students from Birmingham University) were already qualified Pool Lifeguards.
The open water week-long course started at St. Ives Pool with a fitness and lifeguarding skills test assessed by two national trainer assessors. The course then moved onto St Ives beach. First aid featured heavily throughout the week as well as beach rescues, special adaptions of spinal techniques, protecting casualties from waves, rescue using a Malibu board and a lot of new ocean-related theory.
Everyone passed the final test despite huge surf and with high praise from both the trainers and assessors. Almost everyone managed to catch a wave on their return from rescuing a casualty with the Malibu board, surfing themselves and their casualty back onto shore.
The team leaves more aware of the dangers of the sea as well as the skills and strength needed to perform ocean rescues, survive and save.
The Lifesaving club would like to thank Lifeguard International (the training providers), the Royal National Lifeboat Institution (who supplied a grant towards the trip), Warwick Sport and Warwick SU for their support and resources.