If you would like a job that involves assisting patrons and promoting health and safety in a pool environment, you might want to become a pool attendant. The qualifications needed to become a pool attendant vary depending on the exact job description. For pool attendant jobs that do not involve a rescue component, you will likely need to meet a minimum age requirement, be willing to perform maintenance and cleaning duties, and complete some on-the-job training. To become a pool attendant that is expected to perform rescues when necessary, you will generally need to complete training that is identical or very similar to that provided to lifeguards.
The exact description of a pool attendant’s job can vary from one employer to another. In some cases, a pool attendant will be responsible for such tasks as cleaning a pool and monitoring its chemical balance, ensuring that patrons observe a pool’s safety rules, and checking patrons' membership cards. Other employers may use the term pool attendant to refer to an individual who is capable of performing rescues in addition to the duties just listed. The steps required to become a pool attendant depend largely on a particular employer’s interpretation of the title. Generally, pool attendant job listings will state whether the attendant is expected to perform rescue duties.
In the case of jobs that do not involve a rescue component, the qualifications required to become a pool attendant are usually minimal. Many employers require attendants to be at least 16 years of age. Attendants usually must also be willing to perform cleaning and maintenance duties, like adjusting a pool’s filter settings or cleaning spilled food from the deck area. Beyond these basic requirements, you may not need any special skills, as it is common for employers to train attendants after they have been hired.
To become a pool attendant who must perform rescues when needed, you will usually have to be at least 16 years of age and earn certification similar to that required for lifeguards. This typically entails completing classes in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), first aid, and water rescue techniques, and passing both written and practical exams in each of these subjects. At pools which are staffed with qualified lifeguards, an attendant’s rescue duties will often be secondary to his maintenance, cleaning, and supervisory duties. In this case you may need training which is less thorough than that provided to lifeguards.