Swimming is one of the primary skills required of surf lifesavers. Swimming is also a surf sport event and forms part of the Ironman and other relay events. Stillwater swim events are covered under the category of Pool Competition.
Swimming is included as part of Junior Club Day activities and juniors are required to pass a swimming proficiency test to ensure they are competent in the water.
Seniors meet Sunday mornings at 9am for the Club swim prior to activities. All Club members are encouraged to participate regardless of age and ability.
Competitors sprint from the starting line on the beach into the surf where they swim around a set of coloured buoys and return to shore. The finish line is located between two flags about 15m up the beach from the waters edge.
Divisions for the surf race include: Open, U19, U17; Youth: U15, U14; Juniors: U13, U12, U11, U10 and Masters. Race distance is 170m for U14 through to Open and 120m for Juniors and Masters.
This is a team event consisting of one belt-person (swimmer) supported by four lines-persons. Using a traditional surf reel, line and belt, the objective is to be the first belt-person to reach the swimming buoys set at least 120m from the shore. The belt swimmer finishes their race by reaching their buoy first and making the correct ‘touch’ and signal.
The lines-persons ‘pay the line out’ as their belt-person swims out, being careful not to give too much rope which will slow the swimmer down with excess weight, nor to let too little line out which will hold their swimmer back.
Divisions for the belt race include U17, U19 and Open.
Tube rescue is a teams event conducted in teams of either two or four.
For the four member teams event, teams consist of one patient, one tube swimmer and two rescuers. The race involves the patient either swimming or being dropped out to a buoy, who must then be returned to shore using tube rescue techniques.
At the starting gun, the tube swimmer dons a rescue tube, swims out to the patient and attaches the tube before swimming themselves and their ‘patient’ back to shore. Upon the tube being attached to the patient, the two rescuers must also swim out to the buoys and assist the patient back to shore. When reaching the shore, the patient is dragged up to the finish line and the first team to successfully rescue the patient wins.
For the two person tube rescue event, teams consist of one patient and one tube swimmer. Patients swim to a buoy and signal their team mate to rescue them. The tube swimmer then swims out to their patient, attaches the tube and swims their patient to shore.