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junior development programme


Each Sunday during the active summer season the Orewa SLSC junior surf programme offers age-appropriate learning for children 3-14 years. Additional training is offered throughout the week for our older juniors (10 - 14 yeas) who are competitive and/or are keen athletes with a view to develop and strengthen key competencies.  In  the winter, this group transitions indoors and gets the opportunity to continue their development in the pool.   

At Orewa SLSC we believe delivering a successful development programme begins with our ability to communicate and demonstrate our shared beliefs and collective actions both on the beach and in the water. To achieve this we have designed a development programme supported by the 3E Model: Educate, Experience, Exemplify.

E is for Educate
We deliver Levels 1 - 6 of the SLSNZ Life Saving Program Curriculum with activities dependent on weather conditions.

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Age appropriate development includes but is not limited to :

  1. Beach games – practising skills to stay safe on the beach while increasing speed, agility and responsiveness

  2. Water activities/games - using body boards/knee boards, entering and exiting the water quickly and safely and may include mock rescues, understanding/identifying/managing/escaping a rip, etc.

  3. How to set up a beach patrol,  tubes, IRBs, becoming a Rookie (13yrs+)

  4. Preventative actions - Being sun smart, teaching of surf safety rules – a number of lifesaving rules depend on year group

  5. Resilience and responsiveness – beach flags, sprinting and relays (land and water based)

As we are a family-centered Club, we offer all foundation Junior training* on the Sunday morning, with each group training alongside each other on the beach. This supports family time and allows everyone to refuel after a fun training session with our weekly sausage sizzle.

When:        Sundays during the summer season (see Key Dates menu)
Where:      In front of the Orewa Surf Lifesaving Club
Duration:  Little Nippers Under 5 (9.00am – 10.00 am) and all other groups (10.00am – 12.00 noon) Time frames may vary due to conditions
Sign in:      15 mins before start time

Parent/Guardian Involvement during the surf training
Our Club is dependent on all our ‘membership family’ to deliver what we offer on the beach – It takes a village to raise a lifeguard!  So coaches and managers will ask for active participation by parents each week.   Areas where we need assistance include: being our water safety 1:5 ration children to adults, assistant coaching, organising the children or counting as they enter/exit the water, along with supporting the fundraising side like cooking on the BBQ, or becoming a qualified Surf Sport Official for carnivals.  There are loads of further ways to become active in the club, check out our page on ‘Getting Involved’

What we do not do
Swimming ability: We do not teach swimming during Junior Surf Sunday sessions. The Sunday sessions are structured appropriately for each age / ability group, and children must be at the swimming level required for their appropriate age groups for surf sport. The local swim schools offers really great level of swimming lessons during the summer season.

Club Coaches will do additional ocean squad training for U12 - U14 members who have achieved their 200m swim patch and working towards competing at Regional and National Events. Details are on the Junior Surf Calendar.

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E is for Experience 

Junior Surf offers all children an opportunity to develop and test surf lifesaving knowledge and skills in various events based in the water (board, swimming and rescues) and on land (sprints and flags) in both individual and team events. The focus of these events is on applying newly acquired skills, building confidence and competence and resilience and responsiveness in different conditions.   We believe this is an important part of the development of our junior members.  All children 7 years and older are encouraged to take part in the Interclub participation carnivals.  

The carnivals are a fun way to reinforce the skills the children are learning whilst creating bonds of friendships that can span a lifetime.  Carnivals are offered in both the winter and summer seasons showcasing the application of surf lifesaving not only on the beach but also in the pool .  Take a look at the calendar for more details and dates. 

Club Day offers the opportunity for our littlest members to test their skills too!

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E is for Exemplify

In our experience, children look up to those individuals demonstrating the behaviours and skills we are teaching them on the beach.  Because of this,  we fully support the Good Sports initiative.  Good Sports aims to create positive sporting experiences for our kids by supporting and educating the key adult influencers in children’s sport: parents, caregivers, coaches, teachers and sport leaders. 

To that aim, we regularly invite our older youth members to act as guest coaches to the younger ones. This interaction between the age groups is particularly popular at our annual Junior Surf Camp in Ruakaka where the older children take leadership roles in a number of activities over a four (4) day period. 

We also invite or members as guest coaches to our training sessions. Our guest coaches can include members of our life guard team, parents and members who may have competed before in various sporting codes as well as our Surf Officials.  We all have experiences to share and the more we are all actively involved as members of OSLSC, the more we all gain from our collective experiences.  There are so many ways to get involved and/or take the opportunity to lead by example for our young members. The visual below names just a few.