CPR, AED, First Aid, & Lifeguard Training
Aquatic Audits and Inspections
Manitoba Canada

Lloyd Plueschow

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Instructors' Corner - Teaching Tips

The following situations are used as lessons to get the candidates to think. Each sit (situation) gives the way it should be played out.

Purposely letting them fail here, tends to focus the class on future situational exercises.

Use these situations more as a learning exercise as opposed to over complicating basic guarding

Conscious land spinal injury

Face up and breathing

  1. Common errors:
    1. Most candidates will over analyze the sit and think there is more to it than there is
    2. Land boarding – not in scope
    3. Freezing- unsure
    4. Unnecessarily movement of the patient. i.e. Moving the head - not focusing on the obvious
    5. No BSI - gloves and mask at the ready
  2. Solution:
    1. Immobilize the head and monitor/treat vitals (ABCs)
    2. EMS
    3. Remember BSI

Shallow/deep end broken leg or other injury

  1. It is important to set up this sit so the candidate understands that the patient has a broken leg
  2. Ensure that water spinal rescues have been covered and they understand that the spineboard can be used for other removals such as a broken leg, dislocated shoulder, large/heavy victim, etc
  3. Common errors:
    1. Lifting the patient out of the pool with out stabilizing the broken leg
    2. Not considering the spineboard as an option
  4. Solution:
    1. Use spineboard - it is not just for head and spinal injury removals
    2. Note: this sit may play out differently in the shallow end from the deep end.

Stabbing – assailant remains on scene

It is NOT practical or fair to use this situation on an exam - use as a teaching moment only!

  • Common errors:
    • Treat patient, ignore assailant and potential danger
  • Solution:
    • Lifeguards need to accept that they are not expected to, or can save everyone, and may have to wait for the police first. Personal safety is paramount.

Burn – Patient approaches guard near pool

    1. Common errors:
      1. Most candidates over analyze and delay cooling
      2. Infection is important but not when the tissue is still hot
      3. Sometimes the choice of ice or ice water is considered. This can cause more tissue damage
    2. Solution:
      1. Rapid aggressive cooling with a ready source of cool water (not ice or ice water) – i.e. the pool, fountain, etc
  • Note: if the guard uses another source that is quick, such as a hose or sink etc - that is fine as well; the point is to cool the injury quickly.

Baby/Child Manikin under bulkhead or other "impossible" location

It is NOT practical or fair to use this situation on an exam - use as a teaching moment only!

This situation lacks history. How did the victim get to that location without being seen?

  1. Common errors:
    1. Often the candidates do not conduct a thorough search.
  2. Solution:
    1. Search every area of the facility
    2. The point is to perform a thorough search and remember that after 20 minutes to call the police if the baby/child has not been found



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