Nippers

Nippers is a junior activities program that introduces children aged 5 to 14 to Surf Life Saving. It’s a great way for children to make friends, be active and learn how to enjoy the beach safely.

Nippers first learn about surf awareness and safety. As they progress through the various age groups, nippers will undergo lessons in wading, running, ocean swimming, board paddling and lifesaving skills as well as learning the basics of resuscitation and first aid.

Frequently Asked Questions

Age Groups

The youngest age group for Nippers is the Under 6’s.  For the 2020/21 season this includes children who are born between 1 October 2014 – 30 September 2015.

A slightly younger child may take part – however they must have turned 5 years of age beforehand (eg. your child may turn 5 in November of the current season, they can start Nippers after their birthday). Note that your child will “repeat” the Under 6 age group the following year – ie. they will be in Under 6 for the 2021/22 season as well.

No. All children must participate in their correct age group.

Age GroupBorn between
Under 61 October 2014 – 30 September 2015
Under 7 1 October 2013 – 30 September 2014
Under 81 October 2012 – 30 September 2013
Under 91 October 2011 – 30 September 2012
Under 101 October 2010 – 30 September 2011
Under 111 October 2009 – 30 September 2010
Under 121 October 2008 – 30 September 2009
Under 131 October 2007 – 30 September 2008
Under 141 October 2006 – 30 September 2007

Preliminary and Competition Evaluation

All Nippers, Under 6’s to Under 14’s, need to complete an ANNUAL Preliminary Evaluation which includes a float, pool swim or both as part of their Nippers Registration. This ensures a minimum and safe standard of swimming and survival ability for water activities at Nippers.

All Nippers, Under 9’s to Under 14’s, need to complete an ANNUAL Competition Evaluation which includes an ocean swim, around a swim course, as part of their Nippers Registration. This ensures a minimum and safe standard of swimming and survival ability for water activities at Nippers.

  • Preliminary Evaluation – this is a still water proficiency conducted for all junior members, Under 6’s to Under 14’s, at the South West Rocks Pool, before the season begins. Check the season calendar for exact days and times.
  •  Competition Evaluation – this is an ocean swim proficiency conducted for junior members, Under 9’s to Under 14’s, on Main Beach, during the first few weeks of Nippers.

There are specified days set at the beginning of each season for the Preliminary Evaluation and Competition Evaluation to be completed, which must be conducted under the supervision of SWRSLSC Delegates. There are additional times that these evaluations can be completed later on in the season.

Bring with you:

  • Swimmers, cap, goggles and towel
  • Compulsory Pink High-Vis Rashie – Competition Evaluation Only

For Under 6’s and Under 7’s – There will be other opportunities to complete the Preliminary Evaluation once Nippers starts.

For Under 8’s – Under 14’s – If your child does not meet the Preliminary Evaluation requirements, they will not be able to take part in any water activities at Nippers. They may take part in beach activities only until they have completed these requirements. There will be other opportunities to complete the Preliminary Evaluation once Nippers starts. 

If your child does not meet the Competition Evaluation requirements (Under 9’s – Under 14’s), they cannot take part in any water activities at Nippers, aside from the Wade, for now. There will be other opportunities to complete the Competition Evaluation once Nippers starts.

Many children feel nervous about the Competition Evaluation swim. There are plenty of other junior members completing the swim, as well as lots of water safety and older kids on hand to help calm their nerves. Children must do the swim unaided, but support will be nearby.

Please don’t push your child to do the Competition Evaluation swim if they are hesitant, scared or upset. Let them do the pool swim for now. Then come along to the first weeks of Nippers, where they can be encouraged and supported to become fully proficient.

Membership Types

When completing your Nippers registration your child will be a ‘Junior Activity Member’.

Yes, all age managers must join as an ‘Associate Member’ as a minimum.

At least one parent/carer from each family must become a member of South West Rocks SLSC. It is compulsory for at least one parent/carer to join as a member of South West Rocks SLSC. It ensures you are covered by insurance when helping out at Nippers (eg. setting up the beach, helping run an activity etc). Please see our Membership Categories for descriptions.

Uniforms

A range of South West Rocks swimwear and other items are available.
The compulsory uniform items are:

  • Nippers cap – $15
  • Pink high-vis rashie – $15

All South West Rocks Nipper uniforms are on sale at registration days, and most Sunday mornings in the clubhouse (before Nippers starts at 9am).