Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation

Lifeguard Qualification Information

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For all areas except Long Island Region

  • Tests for practical Lifesaving and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation skills
  • Evaluated on a pass/fail basis
  • May take as many tests as necessary at sanctioned test sites
  • Test sites located around the state
  • Each candidate must bring their own pocket mask to the exam
  • All candidates will be required to present valid identification to participate in the qualifying exam process. Please check with your regional representative regarding acceptable identification.

Test Events: goggles are allowed for the 50 and 200 yard swims

200 Yard Swim in 4 minutes or less using crawl or breast strokes

20 Yard underwater swim, surface dive and recovery simulating an underwater search and recovery for a victim. Swim underwater for 20 yards, surface, swim away from wall and surface dive to recover a 10-pound brick. Candidate must swim either on their side with the brick on their hip or swim on their back with the brick on their torso simulating a victim carry and place the brick on the shallow end deck without walking. Not timed.

50 yard sprint in 45 seconds or less using a crawl or breast stroke.

Rescue tube tow for 20 yards towing an examiner on a rescue tube.

Adult CPR performance (Professional Level) for two minutes with adequate one person skills using a pocket mask for a suspected drowning victim.

Bring your own pocket mask.

Further exam information may be obtained by contacting the regional representative of your choice:

Central New York Park Region
  • 6105 E. Seneca Tnpk.
  • Jamesville, NY 13078

Finger Lakes Park Region
  • 2221 Taughannock Park Rd.
  • Trumansburg, NY 14886

New York City Region
  • Riverbank State Park
  • 679 Riverside Drive
  • New York, New York 10031

Palisades Interstate Park Commission
  • Bear Mountain State Park
  • Administration Building
  • Bear Mountain, NY 10911

Saratoga/Capital District Park Region
  • Saratoga Spa State Park
  • 19 Roosevelt Drive
  • Saratoga Springs, NY 12866

Taconic Park Region
  • P.O.Box 308
  • Staatsburg, NY 12580

Thousand Islands Park Region
  • Keewaydin State Park
  • P.O.Box 247
  • Alexandria Bay, NY 13607

Allegany Park Region
  • 2373 ASP Rte 1, Suite 3
  • Salamanca, NY 14779

Genesee Park Region
  • 1 Letchworth State Park
  • Castile, NY 14427

Niagara Frontier Park Region
  • P.O.Box 1132
  • Niagara Falls, NY 14303

Long Island Information
  • Long Island Region
  • P.O.Box 247
  • Babylon, NY 11702
  • Long Island Region
  • Jones Beach State Park Box 1000
  • Wantagh, NY 11793
  • Long Island Water Safety Office
  • (631) 321-3568
NYS DEC
  • Lifeguard Testing
  • NYS DEC
  • 625 Broadway, Third Floor
  • Albany, NY 12233

*Questions for DEC exams should be directed to Barb Palmateer.