Per the American Red Cross, effective March 17th, 2020, all Lifeguarding Courses in our nation have been either postponed or canceled due to COVID-19 because of the nature of the skill training required to become certified. When we do offer classes again, they will all be Blended-Learning Courses with a majority of the work done independently in an online platform with the exception of in-person skills. Please stay tuned for updated information as we navigate this situation. Click here for more information regarding our response to COVID-19.

COVID-19 Certification Extension *Click here sign up*
The American Red Cross has updated its 90-day Certification Extension offering to a 120-day Certification Extension. The 120-day extension will supersed the 90-day extension. Please click here for more details and FAQ's.

Lifeguard Certification and Recertification
This course teaches lifeguards the skills and knowledge needed to prevent and respond to aquatic emergencies. This course includes First Aid, AED training, and CPR for the professional rescuer. All participants must be 15 years of age on or before the final scheduled lesson of the course, and the participant must be a strong swimmer able to swim 300 yards continuously, using freestyle and breaststroke. After successful completion of the course, the individual will be a certified lifeguard.


  • Minimum age 15, Swim 300 yards continuously demonstrating breath control and rhythmic breathing.
  • Candidates may swim using the freestyle, breaststroke or a combination of both but swimming on the back or side is not allowed. Swim goggles may be used.
  • Tread water for 2 minutes using only the legs. Candidates should place their hands under their armpits.
  • Complete a timed event within 1 minute, 40 seconds:
    • Starting in the water, swim 20 yards. The face may be in or out of the water. Swim goggles are not allowed.
    • Surface dive, feet-first or head-first, to a depth of 7 to 10 feet to retrieve a 10-pound object.
    • Return to the surface and swim 20 yards on the back to return to the starting point with both hands holding the 10 pound object and keeping the face at or near the surface so they are able to get a breath. Candidates should not swim the distance underwater.
    • Exit the water without using a ladder or steps.
    • American Red Cross Certification Requirements: attend all class sessions; demonstrate competency in all required skills, demonstrate competency in 3 final skill scenarios, and correctly answer at least 80% of the questions on the final written exams.
  • Location: Harrison Family YMCA

Complete Course Cost:

  • Without book (student download): $210

Recertification Course Cost:

  • Y Member: $100
  • Non-Member: $110
    • Pocket Mask: $15 or provide your own.

Other Info:

  • Lifeguarding participant manual can be downloaded here
  • You can print it or bring your laptop, tablet, etc.
  • Pocket mask included in price
  • All session dates must be attended to receive certification.
  • Please bring lunch or a snack.

For more information, contact Carolyn Hartney-Correa, Aquatics Coordinator​, at 252-972-9622 x.235 or ccorrea@rmymca.org​.