The YMCA of San Diego County is the place to begin your career! A lifeguard develops a keen awareness of surroundings in order to recognize a potential hazard and to prevent emergencies. A lifeguard also develops the skills to recognize and respond with swiftness and confidence to an unexpected situation. When you choose to become a lifeguard, you are taking a bold stand to protect lives, to work selflessly with your professional team, and to serve your community. Apply today and discover how you can join our team and save lives. Apply today and discover how you can join our team and save lives!


The Y conducts interviews and hires aquatic staff year-round. If you’re not currently certified, we will provide you with the training for your certification! Learn more about available aquatic positions and financial aid for lifeguard training by contacting Patty Shomo at pshomo@ymca.org.


The Y requires continued lifeguard training and certification. If you are already certified or looking to complete your certifications, we have the training program for you.

Classes are offered for first-time lifeguards, returning lifeguards that need re-certification, and lifeguards that are interested in becoming an instructor. Through classroom activities, online learning, group discussion and hands-on practice, you’ll learn the skills you need to work as a lifeguard. Get started on your Lifeguard Certification by clicking here or contacting Patty Shomo at pshomo@ymca.org.

Participants must be able to:
  • Be 16 years old or older
  • Tread water for at least 2 minutes
  • Swim 100 yards of front crawl
  • Swim 50 yards each of: front crawl with head up, sidestroke, breaststroke, breaststroke with head up, inverted breaststroke kick with hands on stomach
  • Perform a feet first surface dive in 8 to 10 feet of water and then swim underwater for 15 feet
  • Perform a series of tasks given by the instructor to demonstrate listening and scanning ability as well as stamina and endurance
For more information about our lifeguard training and certification program, please contact Patty Shomo at pshomo@ymca.org.


Lifeguarding is a professionally rewarding experience. We employ over 500 guards each year and operate 16 year around aquatic facilities throughout San Diego County. Our YMCA Aquatic Team is extremely passionate about the safety of children, members, program participants and staff in and around its pools. With positions across the county you are sure to find a Y for you.

Discover how you can join our team and start saving lives!