Apprentice Swimming Requirement
Mark Ritter (email@example.com)
Thu Jun 11 15:12:04 1998
There was an interesting posting to Scouts-L earlier this month. It
sparked a discussion among the Ship 90 leadership that I'd like to share
with the list.
(1) The Safety Afloat Plan and Safe Swim Defense Plan in the Sea Explorer
Manual and the BSA Guide to Safe Scouting (and elsewhere) require that a
person be classified as a Swimmer in order to use boats covered by the
(2) The key points of the Swimmer's test includes: entry (jump feetfirst
into deep water), endurance (100 yards or meters including at least one
sharp turn - 90 to 180 degrees, consisting of 75 y/m using a strong
forward stroke - one or more strokes allowed - and 25 y/m using a restful
back stroke), and self recovery/rescue (float, no specific time limit but
long enough to demonstrate that it is restful). I believe that this
requirement is "owned" by the national Health and Safety committee.
(3) The 1995-1997 and 1998 1st class swimming requirement is: swim 100
yards using one resting stroke and two other strokes, and float for one
minute. There is no requirement for a deep water entry or turn. I think
this is owned by the national Advancement committee.
(4) The 1997 Apprentice swimming requirement is to swim 75 yards or
meters in a strong manner using one of the following strokes (side,
breast, trudgen, or crawl) plus 25 y/m using a resting backstroke; then
rest by floating . There is no requirement for a deep water entry or
turn, and no time limit on the float. And I think this is of course
owned by the national Sea Scout committee.
(5) The Scouts-L posting stated that at a May conference meeting the
H&S(?) and Adv(?) committees have agreed to bring items (2) and (3) into
agreement with each other, effective 1 January 1999. Exact details were
not given. My personal suspicion is that 1st class will see the addition
of a deep water entry and sharp turn; and my hunch (not as strong as a
suspicion) is that the Swimmer requirement will require the use of at
least two different forward strokes and a minimum of 1 minute for the
(6) In a discussion at Monday's meeting, the consensus of Ship 90's
leadership is to recommend that the NSSC bring the Apprentice requirement
into similar agreement. Ship 90's leadership SUPPORTS the addition of
deep water entry and sharp turn to the Apprentice requirement. We have
no opinion on the number of strokes that must be demonstrated or the
minimum duration of the float, except that it should agree with the
reconciled Swimmer and 1st class requirements.
Mark Ritter - firstname.lastname@example.org - Committee Member
Ship 90 - The SSS North Star - New Milford PA
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