The Lifesaving Program, administered by the National Lifesaving Society includes the Canadian Swim Patrol Program, Bronze Medal awards, National Lifeguard Service® (NL) awards, and other awards and programs. 

Courses are offered in July/August.  To be put on our list for courses, please email 


The Canadian Swim Patrol program provides enriched training for those who are ready to go beyond learn-to-swim. Swim Patrol has three levels: Rookie, Ranger, and Star. These programs continue to develop participants’ swim strokes and provide the skill foundation that prepares them for success in the Society’s Bronze Medal awards. Each level of the Canadian Swim Patrol program has three modules: Water Proficiency, First Aid, and Recognition & Rescue.

Rookie Patrol

Develops individual fitness levels to meet a timed 100m swim and 350m workout. Water proficiency skills include: swims with clothes, ready position, foot-first and head-first surface dives. Demonstrating an ability to conduct a primary assessment and initiating EMS are included as first aid skills. Victim recognition and throwing assists are other key elements of the program.

Ranger Patrol

Enhances capability in the water, including stride entry, underwater forward and backward somersaults, lifesaving eggbeater kick and increased fitness levels to meet a 200m timed swim. Rescue skills involve an increased skill level in first aid basics, victim recognition and non-contact rescues.

Star Patrol

An excellent preparation for the Bronze Star award, Star Patrol demands good physical conditioning and lifesaving judgment. Participants develop lifesaving and first aid skills; further refine front crawl, back crawl and breaststroke (100m each); and complete 600m workouts and for 300m timed swims.

Bronze Star

The Lifesaving Society’s Bronze Star develops swimming proficiency, lifesaving skill, and personal fitness. Candidates refine their stroke mechanics, acquire self-rescue skills, and apply fitness principles in training workouts. Bronze Star is excellent preparation for success in Bronze Medallion and provides a fun introduction to lifesaving sport.

Bronze Medallion

The Lifesaving Society’s Bronze Medallion challenges the candidate both mentally and physically. Judgement, knowledge, skill, and fitness – the four components of water rescue – form the basis of Bronze Medallion training. Candidates acquire the assessment and problem-solving skills needed to make good decisions in, on, and around the water. Bronze Medallion is a pre-requisite for assistant lifeguard training in Bronze Cross.

Pre-requisite(s): 13 years of age (or Bronze Star) and CPR-C.

Bronze Cross

The Lifesaving Society’s Bronze Cross begins the transition from lifesaving to lifeguarding and prepares candidates for responsibilities as an assistant lifeguard. Candidates strengthen and expand their lifesaving skills and begin to apply the principles and techniques of active surveillance in aquatic facilities. Bronze Cross emphasized the importance of teamwork and communication in preventing and responding to aquatic emergencies. Bronze Cross is a pre-requisite for advanced training in the Society’s National Lifeguard and leadership certification programs.

Pre-requisite(s): Bronze Medallion and Intermediate First Aid CPR-C & AED.

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.

Recognized as the standard for lifeguards in Canada, National Lifeguard training develops a sound understanding of lifeguarding principles, good judgment, and a mature and responsible attitude toward the role of the lifeguard.

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.

The National Lifeguard program develops the basic lifeguarding skills, principles, and decision-making process to help lifeguards evaluate and adapt to different aquatic facilities and emergencies. The National Lifeguard program cannot in theory or practice prepare candidates for every situation that might occur. Employers must provide in-service training to familiarize their staff with the unique aspects of their aquatic facility.

The National Lifeguard certification reflects the Lifesaving Society’s standards, publications, and research into drowning and injury prevention, water rescue, and aquatic safety systems.

The National Lifeguard certification is backed by a full range of safety services provided by the Society that support the design and operation of safe aquatic facilities that lifeguards work in.