Seacliff Surf Life Saving Gym, Fitness and Trainin WATER PROFICIENCY AND EVALUATIONS – Seacliff Surf Life Saving Club


November 10, 2021
Club Champs This Saturday ! 27th November
November 24, 2021

There have been several questions from parents, about water proficiencies and the preliminary and competition evaluations and so we wanted to take a moment to clarify some of the ways Seacliff Nippers ensures all nippers are well protected in the water. Proficiencies are a critical part of the Club’s duty of care – they are covered extensively on the beach (in come and try parent briefings, and the “all in” existing parent briefing before nippers starts) and referred to by the AGLs before water activities.

For new and returning nippers preliminary evaluation of each nippers water-based proficiency needs to occur before any nipper in any age group can participate in swim and board activities. This ensures the Junior Water Cover Supervisor (JWCS), Age Group Leaders (AGLs) and the water cover team are able to set the right ratios for children in the water.

Each week the Junior Water Cover Supervisor (JWCS) conducts a risk assessment, including weather and surf conditions and the size of the rostered water cover team, which determines how activities will be managed. This means how activities are managed varies week to week.

At Seacliff as a baseline, any nipper completing a preliminary evaluation needs to do so with 1:1 water cover. Once able to meet the criteria of their age group specific level, they can then move to participating in training activities where the baseline ratio for orange shirt water cover is 1:5 and 1:3 for green shirt water safety certificate holders. Then in training activities with their AGL, with the appropriate water cover for their assessed level in place, they can then build up the confidence to complete their competition skills evaluation. In all ages this involves a longer swim than in the preliminary evaluation.

It is important for all parents to realise nippers on a Saturday is not about teaching swimming, our volunteers aren’t trained or qualified for this. For this reason, we have a strong relationship with State Swim on Morphett Rd which provides free introductory lessons for any Seacliff nipper needing a little extra assistance with building up their swimming technique and confidence. If you would like one of these please visit the trailer on the beach on Saturday for a voucher.

I realise it can be frustrating when your child is unable to participate in swim and board activities and I can assure you our volunteer AGLs are working as quickly as possible through those preliminary evaluations – 136 of 184 registered nippers have already been conducted. Please be patient as this occurs over the next few weeks.

You can read more about each Age Groups evaluation criteria and the corresponding Surf Education award here on the Surf Life Saving SA website.


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