Distinction (20-25 hr.): encourages a maturity
of response to demanding aquatic emergency situations and is
designed to develop advanced water rescue skill and knowledge, and
an understanding of the principles of fitness training. Distinction
challenges include implications of assuming responsibility in an
emergency, how to deal with 2 victims at once, and rescue of a
non-breathing spinal-injured victim. Inherent in the name of the
award, lifesavers must perform every item with distinction.
Distinction is recognized as an assistant lifeguard certificate
in Ontario Regulation 565 governing public swimming pools.
Prerequisite: Bronze Cross certification (need
not be current).
Evaluation & certification: Current
Lifesaving Instructors evaluate some items, but only Distinction
Examiners may certify candidates. The Lifesaving Society deems its
certifications to be "current" for 24 months from the certification
Candidate recognition: Distinction medal,
Distinction Award crest, certification card.
Required reference material: Canadian
- *Demonstrate an understanding of:
- the implications of assuming responsibility in an
- the implications of the unsuccessful rescue
- types of spinal injuries and implications
- drowning patterns or trends and common aquatic accidents
- factors affecting the choice of water rescue emergency
- the effects of panic and stress upon a rescuer, victim or
bystander in an aquatic emergency and the implications for the
- components of physical fitness and basic principles of
- the recovery of a non-breathing victim (clothed in shirt,
pants, shoes) submerged in deep water.
- Initiate rescue breathing using a buoyant aid for support while
travelling 25 m; and
- With no aid for support, travel 25 m to point of safety where
rescue breathing is initiated.
- a technique for the movement of two victims to nearest point of
- a carry (25 m or yd.) for 2 victims at once.
- Organize and demonstrate a search procedure/pattern for 1
trained lifesaver appropriate for circumstances described by the
- Recover and immobilize in deep water a breathing,
spinal-injured victim and return to the nearest points of
- *Demonstrate a head-up approach (100 m or yd.) to contact a
passive victim (clothed in shirt, pants, shoes) at the surface.
Carry the victim (100 m or yd.) to safety in the following time
limit: 200 m in 8 min. or 200yd. in 7:30 min.
- *Demonstrate 1 aquatic activity for each of the following:
- To place candidate's heart rate within personal Target
- To improve muscular strength, power or endurance.
- Perform a rescue of a breathing or a non-breathing,
spinal-injured victim. Recruit trained bystanders and prepare
victim for transport. Situation is designed to emphasize
immobilization, stabilization and shallow water removal.
- Perform 2 rescues where the victim is suffering from any one of
the following conditions, or a combination of them:
- some other medical emergency: hyperventilation, major bleeding,
heart attack, stroke, heat-related problem or long bone
- 50 m or yd. each of: legs only, front crawl, back crawl,
- continuously 700 m or 750 yd. in 14 min. using any combination
of your choice of strokes.
* Asterisk indicates item is evaluated by the Instructor.