Swim Instructor & Lifeguard, Tennis Instructor, Children's Program Instructor & Fitness Instructor

Whether you're interested in a career in recreation or just want to upgrade your skills, North Vancouver Recreation and Culture can help you get there.

We offer certification courses in:

  • Swimming Instruction & Lifeguarding:
  • Home Alone
  • Babysitter Training
  • High Five: Principles of Healthy Child Development 

Interested in becoming a certified Fitness Instructor?  We recognize a number of certifications including British Columbia Recreation & Parks Association (BCRPA) courses.  Visit their website for information.

Swim Instructor and Lifeguard Training

How to Become a Swim Instructor & Lifeguard with the NVRC

North Vancouver Recreation & Culture offers all the courses you need to qualify to teach swimming and be a lifeguard.  Both swim instruction and lifeguarding certifications are needed in order to be employed at our pools. 

All courses require 100% attendance. Withdrawals must be made at least 8 days before the start of a course to receive a full refund.  Many of these courses require re-certification - please see certification chart below.

Please Take the Following Courses in Order:

Lifesaving Certifications

  • Bronze Star (optional) - pre-requisite: 12yrs of age
  • Bronze Medallion - pre-requisite: 13yrs of age or Bronze Star
  • Bronze Cross - includes CPR 'C' - pre-requisite: Bronze Medallion

View courses online

Lifeguard Certifications

  • Standard First Aid (SFA) - includes CPR 'C - pre-requisite:  15yrs of age
    Standard First Aid is a comprehensive course that demonstrates how to initiate emergency care. This course covers instruction on prevention, recognition and treatment of life-threatening emergencies. 
  • National Lifeguard Program (NLP) - pre-requisite: 16yrs of age, Bronze Cross and AEC or SFA
    Standard First Aid is a comprehensive course that demonstrates how to initiate emergency care. This course covers instruction on prevention, recognition and treatment of life-threatening emergencies. 

Instructor Certifications

  • Water Safety Instructor (full course) -  pre-requisite: 15yrs of age and Swim Stage 3 or equivalent
    This course is designed to provide candidates with the proper knowledge and skills to teach the Red Cross swimming and water safety program.  Prerequisites: 15yrs of age and Bronze Cross.  
  • Lifesaving Instructor (LSI) - pre-requisite: 16yrs of age and Bronze Cross
    Learn how to teach and evaluate the Lifesaving Society Bronze Medal awards. Candidates will be taught teaching methodology, course planning, class management, safety supervision and the principles of evaluation. Pre-requisite: 15yrs of age,  Bronze Cross, and online course: COVID-19 Instructor Update.
  • Swim Academy Instructor (Swim4Life School age Program)
    The Swim Instructor Update course provides candidates with the philosophy, theory and teaching methods necessary to plan, and deliver NVRC learn-to-swim lessons.  Pre-requisites: 15 years of age, Bronze Cross, and Water Safety Instructor.
  • High Five Principles of Healthy Child Development
    This one-day training will help front-line leaders (anyone working with children aged 4 to 12 – i.e. camp leaders, coaches, swim instructors) improve the quality of programs. It provides in depth training in the HIGH FIVE Principles of healthy child development so front-line leaders understand what they need to do to ensure each child’s social, emotional and cognitive needs are met. 

View our Aquatic Leadership courses online.

Once you complete all of your courses please apply online to become a Swim Instructor/Lifeguard with the NVRC!  


Certification  Re-certification Required
Bronze Medallion  No
Bronze Cross No
Standard First Aid Every 3 years  or if you are employed as a lifeguard, every 2 years
CPR 'C' Certificate Every 3 years  or if you are employed as a lifeguard, every 1 year
NLP Pool Option  Every second year

Learn more about careers in lifeguarding by visiting the Lifesaving Society website.

Swim Instructor

Certification Required To Teach  Re-certification Required
Lifesaving Instructor Canadian Swim Patrol
Bronze Star
Bronze Medallion
Bronze Cross 
Every second year
Water Safety Instructor Red Cross Program Every second year
Swim Instructor Update School-age Learn to Swim program Every year through professional development opportunities

Learn more about careers in swim instruction by visiting the Lifesaving Society and Red Cross websites.

To find out more about becoming a lifeguard or swim instructor, talk to the aquatic staff at one of the NVRC pools or contact Rojin Meehan at 604-983-6421 or by email.

Home Alone

Is a 2.5 hour class interactive safety training program for youth ages 10+. This program prepares youth for the important step of staying home alone safely. This course teaches safety, first aid, and comfort skills through interactive games and role playing. Staying home alone isn’t an event, it’s a process. Students will come away with knowledge, skills and more confidence. View courses online.

Babysitter Training

This 1-day training for youth ages 11+ provides instruction in child care, safety procedures and activities for young children.  Students will come away with  tools and resources to confidently babysit in their community. View courses online.

Certified Tennis Instructor

Become a Tennis Coach

Tennis Canada has a comprehensive Instructor Certification Program.

Tennis BC offers the first level of training for the Instructor certification. The Instructor Program only takes two weekends to complete, and certifies you to teach group lessons for level 1.0 to 2.5 players in a park/recreation department or as a seasonal club pro. You will learn how to implement pre-planned content and how to run cooperative drills on one to three courts.  For more information or to register, visit Tennis BC's website, call 604-737-3086.

Children's Program Instructor

Working with children in recreation is a rewarding and fun experience.  North Vancouver Recreation & Culture is always looking for enthusiastic and skilled children's instructors.  View our current employment opportunities.

Most children's program instructors gain experience volunteering with NVRC in programs and daycamps.  It is also recommended that candidates be certified in High Five and First Aid.