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The Junior Surf Programme is designed to enrich the lives of our young members through engaging activities and active participation, leading to the acquisition of personal, lifesaving, and competition skills, in a safe aquatic environment.  The purpose of this programme is to deliver a successful Junior Surf Programme.


  • To learn the skills required to gain the Surf Lifeguard Award.

  • To provide the best possible life saving experience for all juniors with the view to encouraging long-term active participation.

  • To provide opportunities for juniors to actively participate in and enjoy life saving and competition in an aquatic environment.

  • To ensure our junior member are safe on New Zealand's beaches through building knowledge and experiences in the Junior Surf Programme.

  • To develop a team based philosophy encompassing leadership, camaraderie, teamwork, and fun.

  • To promote social, emotional and physical growth and development in a healthy and safe environment. 


From the age of 7 years children can join the Club to participate in Junior Surf.  

We encourage children to have fun and develop their skills, so they can enjoy the beach and one day might be able to save someone else too. 

It's about developing tomorrow's lifeguards and opening up a whole new world to children.

There are seven achievement levels within the Junior Surf programme providing a managed pathway for children to gain confidence in the surf.


Level 1 (7 year olds)

  • Pool Swim 25 metres

  • Open water swim 25 metres

  • Survival Float for 20 seconds

  • Wading and negotiating the waves in and out

  • Demonstrate being confident in the waves

  • Diving under a wave

  • Gliding onto a wave from standing position

  • Run Wade Run 25m x 50m x 25m

  • Body board using leash, catching a wave, paddling

  • Six theory questions

Level 2 (8 year olds)

  • Pool Swim 50 metres

  • Open water swim 50 metres

  • Wading with correct technique

  • Negotiating waves in and out

  • Survival Float for 30 seconds

  • Body surfing catching a wave, stroke on wave

  • Tread water 30 seconds

  • Run Swim or Dolphin Dive Run 30m x 50m x 30m

  • Paddling lying down, negotiating waves in and out

  • Six theory questions


Level 3 (9 year olds)

  • Pool swim 100 metres

  • Open water swim up to 100 metres

  • Diving under a wave

  • Wade, dolphin diving to waist depth, swim

  • Body surfing, on a wave, stroking on wave

  • Tread water 1 minute

  • Run Swim Run 50m x 75m x 50m

  • Achieving three of the following on a board: Surfing along a wave with fins, going over the top of a wave on the way out, going under a wave, Eskimo Roll

  • Six theory questions


Level 4 (10 year olds)

  • Pool swim 200 metres in 7 minutes

  • Ocean water swim 200 metres

  • Swim with a tube, fins and patient

  • Diving under wave, pushing off the bottom

  • Body surfing, swimming to catch a wave

  • Tread water 1 minute

  • Run Swim Run 50m x 100m x 50m

  • Board paddling, kneeling, negotiating surf, turning, catching a wave, and holding on, paddling with a patient

  • Paddling with two on board

  • Five theory questions


Level 5 (11 year olds)

  • Pool swim 200 metres in 5 minutes (and / or)

  • Ocean water swim 200 metres

  • Diving under wave, 5 dolphin dives

  • Body surfing, swimming to catch a wave

  • Hand up for 30 seconds to signal for help - notify Patrol Captain before doing

  • Swim with tube, fins and patient following a patient pick up

  • Tread water 2 minutes, assistance required

  • Run Swim Run 100m x 200m x 100m

  • Board catching unbroken wave, turning around buoy, punching through white water, recovering from falling off your board.

  • Controlling your board and changing direction

  • Paddle two to a board

  • Pick up a patient on a board

  • Four theory questions


Level 6 (12 year olds)

  • Pre requisite - Level 5 Award

  • 200 metre pool swim in 4.5 minutes

  • Run Swim Run in the ocean (100m run including the wade,  200m swim, 100m run) in 7 minutes

  • Tow a patient in a rescue tube a minimum distance of 30  metres. The rescuer must wear flippers. 

  • Six theory questions

  • Level 7 (13 year olds)

  • Rookie Lifeguard Programme

  • Contact the Club Captain for information on this programme


Photo credit: Andrew McArthur

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