If a unit chooses, it may conduct swim checks prior to coming to summer camp by following the procedures developed by the council aquatics committee. Ideally, this would be done as part of a year-round aquatics program.

Follow the guidelines below and email completed forms to aquatics@ransburgbsa.org at least two weeks prior to your arrival. Alternatively, these forms may also be mailed with the health forms.

Feel free to download and print a copy of the Unit Swim Classification Record here to use while administering swim classifications to your unit while following the guidelines below.

Important Guidelines

  1. Personnel

    • The most important criteria is to have a certified adult conducting the tests. Certification would include Aquatics Instructor BSA, Lifeguard BSA, or Red Cross WSI. Those who administer individual tests to Scouts should be 1) adults with strong aquatics skills or 2) older Scouts with Lifesaving MB, Red Cross Lifeguard or BSA Lifeguard training and/or certification.

  2. Safe Swim Defense
    • A qualified person should review the Safe Swim Defense plan (and possibly the Safety Afloat plan as well) for the entire unit. All points of the Safe Swim Defense should be adhered to during the test, as during all swimming activities. One note here is that each Scout should have his camp medical turned in before taking the test.
  3. Ability Classification
    • Each classification should be administered individually with one guard following and watching a single swimmer for the duration of his test. If you do this at a pool, you could have one guard combination on each side of the pool and run Scouts through in a relatively short time.
    • Non-Swimmers Classification
      • Complete the Annual Health Review without any full aquatic restrictions.
    • Beginners Classification
      • Jump feet-first into water over your head, come to the surface, swim 25 feet, turn sharply and return to the starting point. (Emphasize the feet-first jump and the ability to turn without holding on to something).
    • Swimmers Classification 
      • Jump feet-first into water over your head, come to the surface, swim 75 yards in a strong manner using any combination of accepted (crawl, sidestroke, breaststroke, trudgen) strokes on your front or side. Continue swimming an additional 25 yards using a resting backstroke (elementary, not racing). At the end of the 100 yards, float on your back as motionless as possible.
  4. Records
    • Careful records should be kept that include Scout’s name, medical check, swimming classification, date, and who supervised the testing procedure (include certification). Copies of these records should be provided to the Aquatics Director upon arrival in camp. To ensure these records are as expected, please email them to aquatics@ransburgbsa.org at least two weeks prior to your arrival.