Q&A

When your youngster is splashing around in the pool, lifeguards are in charge of helping keep them safe.

And local lifeguards choose the job over the summer to help people, earn extra money and spend the summer in the sun.

Grace Kinsey, a lifeguard at the Franklin Family Aquatic Center, talks about the job.

She is a recent graduate of Franklin Community High School and recently finished her first year at the University of Indianapolis.

» How long have you been a lifeguard?

I have been a lifeguard for a year. Last summer was my first time lifeguarding.

» How long is a typical shift?

For a day, depending on my shift I’ll work seven to nine hours. But if I have a private pool party following that shift, it can sometimes be up to 10 to 12 hours for the day.

» Why did you want to become a lifeguard?

I was wanting a summer job where I could interact with people, and I love being outside. Also, the responsibility of a lifeguard is rewarding at the end of the day. My lifeguard license can apply in all pools as well, so that is beneficial when it comes to indoor pools needing a lifeguard.

» What is the training to become a lifeguard like?

To become a lifeguard you are educated about different saves, situations, First Aid, and CPR and then tested on all of the different areas. There is a lot to learn in a short time, but once you get the material down it is easy to remember what to do in certain situations.

» What is a typical day like?

A typical day is busy. Rotating to different stations around the pool, blowing your whistle to tell kids to walk or obey some other type of rule. Also, dealing with some type of first aid such as a bloody knee, nose bleed, or sometimes just an ice pack for someone. Our days also consist of cleaning the bathrooms and the pool deck for any messes.

» What is the best part of the job?

The best part of the job for myself is being able to see the kids who have waited to be tall enough go down the slide or off of the diving board for the first time. Or being able to help someone in any way that I can.

» What is the hardest part of the job?

The hardest part of the job is knowing that anything can happen. I always have to be alert and ready to react to any type of situation that occurs.

» How do you keep fit throughout the summer?

I was an athlete in high school, so I am always trying to stay fit. I usually run, bike or swim as much as I can. I also attend a workout class at my church in the mornings before work. Kendall Paris (manager), will have in-service meetings weekly which will typically consist of the lifeguards swimming a lap or two as well to keep us fit for the water.