As budgets dried up and cities felt like they were drowning in liability, they panicked, and the Michigan beach lifeguard almost became nonexistent and unskilled. There was a time when beach lifeguards were all over our water state protecting beachgoers. As lifeguard departments dissolved, so too did lifeguard competitions. The lifeguard competitions played a vital part in maintaining a quality lifesaving force in Michigan. I would like to restore competitive lifesaving competitions to Michigan.
In the 80’s and 90’s Michigan Lifeguard competitions were all over the state. Competitions were a time for Cities to show off their lifesaving department. For the competitors it was a chance to learn from other departments and show off the skills they worked hard all summer perfecting. I remember camping up at sleeping bear national lakeshore and running and swimming all day in preparation for the city of Rochester hills lifeguard competition. Training for competitions helped me perform not only for the event, but most importantly it gave me confidence in my skills, and helped calm me while working in the lifeguard tower.
Competition will build the cooperation, interest, and skills needed by lifeguards to make their jobs both fulfilling and fun and while providing the safest and most effective lifeguarding to the public.