About the course
The NPLQ was first developed by the Royal Lifesaving Society (RLSS) in 1990 to address the future role of the lifeguard and the needs of swimming pool operators. As industry changes, and the legal obligations for operators have continued to increase, the RLSS and IQL have reviewed and updated the qualification with the most recent update being Generation 9 in July 2018.
The NPLQ is regulated by Ofqual and other regulators.
It is also an internationally recognised Royal Lifesaving Society (RLSS) UK qualification, enabling you to apply for a job as a lifeguard.
The course including assessment is 36 hours which is usually run over 5 days from 8am to 6pm. The course includes the safe use of an Automated External Defibrillator (AED) adding another 1.5hrs.
Due to the nature of the role of a lifeguard, the course is physically demanding and includes swimming to set times, lifting casualties out of the water and diving/jumping to the deepest part of the pool. Training and assessment is divided into 3 sections and all 3 sections must be successfully passed to attain the qualification.
Unit 1: The lifeguard, Swimming Pool and Supervision
Unit 2: Intervention, Rescue and Emergency Action Plans
Unit 3: Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) and First Aid
Every candidate attending a NPLQ course must be 16 years old at the time of taking the assessment and be able to:
- Jump or dive into deep water in deep water
- Swim 50 metres in no more than 60 seconds
- Swim 100 metres continuously on their front, and on their back
- Tread water for 30 seconds in deep water
- Surface dive to the floor of the pool
- Climb out of the pool unaided without using ladder / steps where the pool design permits
The assessment is independent and will take place at the end of the course once a candidate has attended the minimum guided learning hours and have met the criteria to the required level of competence. The course and the assessment involve a mixture of practical and theory-based assessments. It is split into 3 sections:
- Practical Pool assessment
- Theory assessment for all 3 sections
- Practical First aid and CPR
All 3 Units must be completed and passed to gain the award.
Is there a certificate at the end of the course?
All successful students will be awarded the Ofqual Level 2 Award in Pool Lifeguarding, Intervention, Supervision and Rescue and receive a certificate which is valid for 2 years. NPLQ is the marketing name for this qualification.
Where and when can I attend one of these courses?
Hampton Open Air Pool
2021 course dates:
Tel: 0208 255 1116
Via zoom and practical at the pool when it re opens: 6th, 13th, 20th and 7th, 14th, 21st March.
For prices and to book contact Hampton Pool.
21st - 25th June.
For more course details visit:
5th-9th; 12th-16th; 19th-23rd July
2nd-6th; 9th-13th; 16th-20th; 23rd-27th August
For more information and details on prices please email:
or call us on 07801 263168
"The course was relevant to my job, and very well taught"
"The approachable friendly tutor made it easy for me to learn"
"Tina was outstanding as a first aid instructor with both practical and theory"
"I felt I could ask as many questions as I liked in a relaxed atmosphere"
"Tina was excellent at delivery, and all the handouts were great"
"Very good method of teaching"
"I felt welcome, the teaching was clear and Tina provided excellent explanations"