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Lifeguards, Ski Patrol, and Other Recreational Protective Service Workers
SOC Code: 33-9092.00

Monitor recreational areas, such as pools, beaches, or ski slopes to provide assistance and protection to participants.

Sample of reported job titles: Alpine Patroller, Beach Attendant, Beach Lifeguard, Lifeguard, Marine Safety Officer, Ocean Lifeguard, Ocean Lifeguard Specialist, Pool Attendant, Pool Lifeguard, Ski Patroller


  • Examine injured persons and administer first aid or cardiopulmonary resuscitation, if necessary, using training and medical supplies and equipment.
  • Contact emergency medical personnel in case of serious injury.
  • Rescue distressed persons, using rescue techniques and equipment.
  • Instruct participants in skiing, swimming, or other recreational activities and provide safety precaution information.
  • Patrol or monitor recreational areas such as trails, slopes, or swimming areas, on foot, in vehicles, or from towers.
  • Complete and maintain records of weather and beach conditions, emergency medical treatments performed, and other relevant incident information.
  • Maintain quality of pool water by testing chemical levels.
  • Warn recreational participants of inclement weather, unsafe areas, or illegal conduct.
  • Observe activities in assigned areas, using binoculars, to detect hazards, disturbances, or safety infractions.
  • Inspect recreational equipment, such as rope tows, T-bars, J-bars, or chair lifts, for safety hazards and damage or wear.
  • Inspect recreational facilities for cleanliness.
  • Provide assistance with staff selection, training, and supervision.
  • Provide assistance in the safe use of equipment, such as ski lifts.

Technology Skills

  • Desktop publishing software - Microsoft Publisher
  • Electronic mail software - Microsoft Outlook
  • Presentation software - Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Spreadsheet software - Microsoft Excel
  • Word processing software - Microsoft Word

Tools Used

  • All terrain vehicles tracked or wheeled - Four wheel drive 4WD vehicles
  • Automated external defibrillators AED or hard paddles - Automated external defibrillators AED
  • Automatic pool cleaner - Pool vacuums
  • Axes - Ice axes
  • Direction finding compasses - Navigational compasses
  • Emergency medical services first aid kits - Emergency first aid kits
  • Emergency medical services rappel kits - Rescue rappel equipment
  • Emergency response litters or stretchers or accessories - Rescue toboggans
  • Extension pole - Reach poles
  • Global positioning system GPS receiver - Global positioning system GPS receivers
  • Handheld thermometer - Handheld digital thermometers
  • Life rings - Rescue buoys; Rescue rings
  • Manlift or personnel lift - Chair lifts; Tow lines
  • Medical acoustic stethoscope or accessory - Mechanical stethoscopes
  • Mercury blood pressure units - Mercury sphygmomanometers
  • Mountain bicycles - Mountain bikes
  • Orthopedic splint systems - Air splints
  • Oxygen therapy delivery system products accessories or its supplies - Oxygen administration sets
  • pH meters - pH indicators
  • Public address systems - Public address PA systems
  • Radio frequency transmitters or receivers - Avalanche beacons
  • Safety harnesses or belts - Safety harnesses
  • Shovels - Collapsible snow shovels
  • Single gas monitors - Chlorine testers
  • Skis - Snow skis; Snowshoes
  • Snowboards
  • Snowmobiles or snow scooter - Snowmobiles
  • Surfboards
  • Swim goggles or swim fins - Swim fins
  • Two way radios
  • Water analyzers - Water testers
  • Water samplers
  • Wetsuits - Scuba suits


  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
  • Medicine and Dentistry - Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.


  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Judgment and Decision Making - Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.
  • Service Orientation - Actively looking for ways to help people.
  • Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
  • Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
  • Coordination - Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.


  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Far Vision - The ability to see details at a distance.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Selective Attention - The ability to concentrate on a task over a period of time without being distracted.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Flexibility of Closure - The ability to identify or detect a known pattern (a figure, object, word, or sound) that is hidden in other distracting material.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Speed of Closure - The ability to quickly make sense of, combine, and organize information into meaningful patterns.


  • Interest code: RS
    • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.
    • Social - Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.

Work Context

  • Contact With Others - 85% responded “Constant contact with others.”
  • Responsible for Others' Health and Safety - 64% responded “Very high responsibility.”
  • Face-to-Face Discussions - 74% responded “Every day.”
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results
  • Deal With External Customers - 73% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Work With Work Group or Team - 72% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Freedom to Make Decisions - 72% responded “Some freedom.”
  • Structured versus Unstructured Work - 40% responded “A lot of freedom.”
  • Indoors, Environmentally Controlled - 64% responded “Every day.”
  • Telephone - 59% responded “Every day.”
  • Frequency of Decision Making - 58% responded “Every day.”
  • Deal With Unpleasant or Angry People - 22% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
  • Spend Time Sitting - 33% responded “Less than half the time.”
  • Consequence of Error - 44% responded “Serious.”
  • Coordinate or Lead Others - 38% responded “Extremely important.”
  • Frequency of Conflict Situations - 21% responded “Once a month or more but not every week.”
  • Outdoors, Exposed to Weather - 36% responded “Every day.”
  • Physical Proximity - 58% responded “Slightly close (e.g., shared office).”
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable - 39% responded “Every day.”
  • Importance of Repeating Same Tasks - 38% responded “Fairly important.”
  • Spend Time Standing - 53% responded “Less than half the time.”
  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate - 47% responded “Very important.”
  • Responsibility for Outcomes and Results - 31% responded “High responsibility.”
  • Spend Time Walking and Running - 40% responded “Less than half the time.”


Percentage of RespondentsEducation Level Required
43%High school diploma or equivalent

Work Styles

  • Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Concern for Others - Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
  • Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Social Orientation - Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.
  • Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
  • Leadership - Job requires a willingness to lead, take charge, and offer opinions and direction.
  • Adaptability/Flexibility - Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
  • Achievement/Effort - Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
  • Independence - Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.
  • Analytical Thinking - Job requires analyzing information and using logic to address work-related issues and problems.

Work Values

  • Relationships - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
  • Support - Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
  • Achievement - Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.

Wages & Trends

  • Median wages (2017)
    • $10.24 hourly, $21,290 annual
  • Employment (2016)
    • 152,000 employees
  • Projected growth (2016-2026)
    • Average (5% to 9%)
  • Projected job openings (2016-2026)
    • 39,700

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