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The lifesaver is an Australian icon and for most, nippers is where it all begins. The program is all about teaching our children about safety in the water in a fun environment and is a great way for your kids to reinforce the skills gained from their swimming lessons. Nippers are taught skills in beach and board racing for competition, this is NOT a swimming lesson program. The program can also provide you with useful skills such as leadership, teamwork and communication that will enable you to become a fully-fledged lifesaver. Not to mention the great friends to be made along the way!
Members up to the age of 14 can participate in nippers training, however the minimum age to be eligible for competition is 7 yrs old. The program is broken up into age groups (your age as at 30th September).
Under 6 program suitable for 4-6 years with a focus on beach safety. It is a ELSC requirement that all children participating in the under 6 program are to be accompanied by a parent throughout the duration of the program.
Age groups are from U6 through to U14
For the 2021/2022 season your child will go in to the age group as per the dates listed below;
U6 - 1st October 2015 to 30th September 2016
U7 - 1st October 2014 to 30th September 2015
U8 - 1st October 2013 to 30th September 2014
U9 - 1st October 2012 to 30th September 2013
U10 - 1st October 2011 to 30th September 2012
U11 - 1st October 2010 to 30th September 2011
U12 - 1st October 2009 to 30th September 2010
U13 - 1st October 2008 to 30th September 2009
U14 - 1st October 2007 to 30th September 2008
U14+ - This is the last year of structured junior activities and the first where you can start to participate in lifesaving patrols.
Please ensure your child is in the correct age group. The program runs off electronic information supplied for the Age Groups, this if for the sign in and out every week and for their awards
A number of skills and knowledge lessons are provided through the structured junior development program that pathway towards the Surf Rescue Certificate (SRC). The SRC is the introductory award for patrolling lifesavers and allows the recipient to take part in beach patrols. A member must be 13 years of age to sit the examination for the SRC award.
Look out each month for Nipper News which includes updates and news on Nippers activities and events, Age Manager Courses and nipper achievements.
We started a junior lifeguard team to enable nippers to learn what patrols are all about and to teach them more skills. We will be running this again this season commencing in January. Patrols are done on a Saturday 1pm –5 30pm and on Sunday 11am –5pm. The junior lifeguards will be able to do two hour sessions. They must wear club uniform and hold a current S badge and be 9 years of age and up. Please register with Kerry, Patrol Manager firstname.lastname@example.org or if you are wanting more info please speak to Kerry or Dianne.
Nippers Manager - Bianca Bell
Nippers Instructor- Hamish Mountain
Age Managers -
It is the responsibility of parents to ensure Nippers are Sun Smart and well hydrated while on the beach. The club cap and pink rash vest is compulsory during sessions for easy identification and nippers should wear rash vests and bathers because, lets face it…. you’re going to get wet. Towel, hat, sunscreen, drink bottle, snacks and warm clothes are also useful.
Club caps and pink safety vests are the only compulsory 'uniform' for nippers. ELSC bathers, rash vests, jackets are not compulsory but look really cool. All ELSC branded uniforms including club caps are available for sale on Sunday mornings.
Don’t forget to name your cap as there will be over 100 identical caps on the beach:
$10 for one
$18 for 2
$25 for 3
Pink Rash Vests
Just see our Club Merchandise officer at nippers training sessions for all orders.
Becoming a part of the nipper program is a fantastic and rewarding experience, kids love to see their parents getting involved and enjoying themselves, so try to save the Sea Breeze café breaky till later and JOIN IN!. The success of the program relies on parents help. You choose how to get involved whether its Age Manages (running the program for each session for the age group), water safety officers (qualified helpers who assist in the water based activities i.e. with technique and safety practices), social activities or fundraising—you name it. The nipper program has grown considerably and we desperately need more help, so please contact the Nippers Manager if you are interested.
Age Manager Training Course
next course date: TBC
Parents can obtain Age Manager qualifications, which will see you working the a team in water safety and nippers activities, plus you’ll receive an awesome Age Manger t-shirt that will make you feel extra special (must be worn for easy identification of leaders). Age Manager courses are offered throughout the season. Please come and see our Nippers Manager for upcoming dates.
In order to ensure everyone has a positive experience, we always promote fair play:
Nipper carnivals provide an opportunity to put all the hard training to practice. They are awesome fun and you’ll meet loads of other kids from clubs around Victoria. Carnival events include:
A number of nipper carnivals are run throughout the season at various beaches around Victoria. Your Junior Manager will advise you of competitions ELSC will be entering.
To maintain safety and lifesaving standards, Surf Life Saving Australia has a set standard of competency that you must achieve before being eligible to compete at carnivals. The club Nippers Instructor and Junior Manager will ensure all Nippers meet this standard before competing at Carnivals.
All nippers who wish to compete in carnivals are required to complete annual ‘S Badge’ Proficiency test. Your Junior Manager will advise when proficiency testing is to take place during nippers training.
The competency test involves successfully completing an assessment which will include and continuous effort of RUN – SWIM – RUN (distance is determined by age group and you will be advised by the Nippers Instructors at the time of assessment).
Those that successfully and competently complete the required distance are able to compete in both sand and water events at Carnival.
Those that are not able to successfully and competently complete the required distance, will be awarded the Training badge which allows you to compete in all sand based activities at carnival.
The ‘S badge’ must be sewn onto the left hip of the bathers you intend to compete in. Carnival Officials will inspect competitors at line up and competitors not displaying ‘S Badge’ will not be permitted to compete in water based events at Junior Carnivals.
The minimum age to become a fully fledged lifesaver is 13 years of age. You’ll need to complete the Surf Rescue Certificate (SRC), which is a course run through the club and members will be notified of course dates via the monthly newsletter. The SRC qualification involves training in surf awareness, surf skills, surf rescue techniques, first aid and resuscitation. Once you’ve successfully completed the course, you will be qualified to participate in patrol duties under the supervision of a Bronze Medallion holder.
Once you turn 15 years old, you can complete the Bronze medallion. This course is also run through ELSC and members will be notified of course dates. The Bronze medallion involves training in surf awareness, surf skills, surf rescue techniques, first aid and resuscitation. Following successful completion of the course, you will be qualified to participate in patrol duties.