NZ Pool Championships Showcases Rescue Skills

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Surf Life Saving New Zealand's first national Surf Sports event for the season kicks off in Hamilton on Friday with the New Zealand Pool Championships.

The national champs for pool rescue events features events ranging from manikin carries and obstacles to line throw and rescue medleys.

Now in its 11th year, the competition has gone from strength to strength and has the reputation of close exciting racing.

The event features both young and old (competitors range in age from 10 through to 69) with the largest age group of competitors being under 16.

A number of members of the winning 2012 World Lifesaving Championships team will be competing including Steve Kent, Steven Ferguson, Natasha Hind, Andy McMillan (also all former Olympians), Samantha Lee and Laura Quilter, as well as current High Performance team members Natalie Peat and Kirsty Wannan.

Surf Life Saving New Zealand is excited to see the continual growth and interest in the New Zealand Pool Championships at both a national and regional level.

Surf Life Saving New Zealand Sport Manager Bradley Simpson says the pool champs is a good, fun event with a great dynamic which is why people continue to come each year. "It's the first big national event of the season and it's a perfect way to kick it off," he says.

The New Zealand Pool Championships is being held at Waterworld in Te Rapa, Hamilton from October 11-13.

Hamilton City Council General Manager Community Lance Vervoort says a summer at the beach wouldn't be the same, or safe, without the presence of the men and women in red and yellow keeping a watchful eye on our beaches and the people enjoying them. "On behalf of Hamilton City Council and the Hamilton Pools team, I am very pleased to welcome Surf Life Saving New Zealand's New Zealand Pool Championship to Waterworld," he says.

The competition kicks off at lunchtime on Friday and continues through all day on Saturday before finishing up at lunchtime on Sunday.

Follow the live results throughout the event at and for more information on the event visit

Additional Information: Pool Champs for Dummies

There are a range of reasons why the New Zealand Pool Championships is a unique and exciting event. All the events are based around rescue capability and are specific to saving people's lives- what Surf Life Saving New Zealand is all about.

Not only is it the one event that is held in a controlled environment, it is also the one competition that is purely swimming based.

The different events help competitors train for a surf environment. Diving underwater to pick up bricks off the bottom of the pool and rescuing manikins that weigh around 70kgs is comparable to ducking under a wave and diving under to rescue someone.

Some of the most popular events to watch are the line throw which involves one person throwing a rope to a patient who is positioned 12.5 meters from the pool edge, it is a very fast and exciting race to watch.

The Super Lifesaving event is another popular one with different components including swimming with fins, carrying a rescue tube and a rescue off the bottom of the pool.

The competition attracts huge crowds every year because of its unique and fun environment. It has a different vibe to competing at the beach. Competitors can hear the music and the crowds from the pool, unlike being out on the water at the beach. A draw card is that whole clubs can compete together and cheer each other on.

For more information, please contact: 

Lisa Honeybone, Media & Communications Specialist, SLSNZ
0276 488 823 |