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Times of the Islands Magazine

Watching Over the Water: Lifeguards Earn Certification at Area Pools

Jan 27, 2022 02:05PM ● By ANN MARIE O’PHELAN

Lifeguard training courses provide the knowledge and skills to prevent, recognize, and respond to emergencies at pools, waterparks, and nonsurf beaches. 

“The American Red Cross offers a lifeguarding program, as well as first aid and CPR/AED (automated external defibrillator) training. Participants learn how to recognize and respond to cardiac, breathing, and first aid emergencies, including performing CPR,” says regional communications director Siara Campbell. The Red Cross has been conducting classes throughout the country for more than 100 years. Locally, the organization provides training at Florida Gulf Coast University. For other locations, and to find out more, visit or call 1-800-RED-CROSS. 

The Sanibel Recreation Center also offers YMCA lifeguard training (call for upcoming schedule), as does the Fort Myers YMCA.  

Lee County Parks and Recreation offers aquatic training courses, including the StarGuard lifeguard certification course. “This course is taught at multiple pools during the spring to train lifeguards for the summer,” says aquatic supervisor Paul Rapp. For information, contact one of the community pools at Nearby facilities include the San Carlos Community Pool


Ann Marie O’Phelan is a Southwest Florida resident and regular contributor to TOTI Media. 



Sanibel Recreation Center 

3880 Sanibel-Captiva Road, Sanibel 


FGCU Aquatics Center 

10501 FGCU Blvd. South, Fort Myers 

Fort Myers YMCA 

1360 Royal Palm Square Blvd., Fort Myers 


San Carlos Community Pool 

8208 Sanibel Blvd., Fort Myers