How It Works

How Our Nipper Program Works

Nippers offer a fun and active lifestyle choice for children between the ages of 5 and 13, as well as a solid base for learning and competition in beach and water-based activities. Children are taught everything from sun and surf safety, beach sprints, board paddling and lifesaving skills like CPR and water rescues.

 

Have Fun & Keep Active

Nippers is a series of fun interactive activities, whilst keeping your kids active in the sunshine.

Make Friends

The nipper program is centered around creating lasting friendships and bonds within age groups.

Learn New Skills

Nippers is focused on teaching important life skills regarding ocean safety.

Future Pathways

Nippers equips your child with a series of certificates and valuable knowledge, leading into a great variety of future oppurtunities.

What we Do

Dicky Beach Nipper is a fun interactive way to learn lifelong lessons about surf safety and awareness. Nippers operates through a roster, where age groups will spend 45minutes on each activity before rotating around to another fun exciting venture. U6’s and U7’s typically do land-based activities with some small wade activities. Whilst the other age groups do a wide range including; tube rescue, board rescue, boards, swim, sprints, flags, signals as well as a wide variety of other activities. We teach important life lessons through practical real life experiences.

The Learning Objectives For Each Age Group

Nippers for this age group will engage in play-based activities. They wear a florescent green cap for quick identification and are often referred to as ‘Green Caps’. U6 nipper sign on is limited to children that have older siblings in the nipper program. U6 and U7 numbers are capped. U6 & U7 nippers will: 

• Get to know their way around their surf club and beach. 

• Understand basic safety procedures such as how to signal for help. 

• Identify a variety of items that can be found at the beach. 

• Understand what slip, slop, slap and slide means. • Identify dangers at their beach. 

• Identify what a lifesaver looks like and what they do. 

• Identify the red and yellow flags and what they mean. 

• Develop confidence in the water through play-based activities, wading and participating in run-wade-runs. 

• Enjoy sand-based activities such as beach flags, beach sprinting and beach relays.

Nippers for this age group will continue to develop confidence in nipper activities through fun-based
activities. Under 8 nippers will:
• Develop an understanding of surf lifesaving in Australia.
• Recognise the diverse human and marine communities that make up a beach
ecosystem.
• Be able to demonstrate sun smart guidelines and understand what happens
when they’re not sun smart.
• Identify dangers at their beach.
• Recognise the signs of being in trouble in the water and learn how to signal to
get assistance.
• Recognise what an emergency is and learn how and when to dial ‘000’ if an
emergency arises.
• Identify the red and yellow flags and what they mean.
• Increase confidence in the water through catching waves on body boards,
wading and dolphin diving.
• Enjoy sand-based activities such as beach flags and beach sprinting.
• Participate in team activities such as wade and beach sprint relays.
• Under 8 nippers who have completed their competition evaluation are eligible
to compete in inter-club competitions.

Nippers for this age group will step up to the next level and further develop confidence in the surf through
participating in surf swims and board paddling activities. Under 9 nippers will:
• Further understand the club’s role within surf lifesaving in
Australia.
• Identify natural and man-made objects in the beach
environment and recognise the environmental impact they
have on the beach.
• Recognise the importance of hydration, nutrition and exercise
as part of their participation in the nipper program.
• Identify surging, spilling & plunging waves and recognise the
dangers swimmers can be exposed to with a changing tide.
• Identify the 5 beach safety tips using the F.L.A.G.S. acronym.
• Recognise what an emergency is and to be able to describe
when and how to dial ‘000’ if an emergency arises.
• Identify different safety signs on their beach and their meaning.
• Learn new skills such as how to paddle a nipper board, how to
swim in the surf and body surfing techniques.
• Further develop running techniques on the sand and
techniques for diving for beach flags.
• Participate in both land based and ocean-based team activities.
• Can represent the club at inter-club competitions, however this
is optional, and they must have completed their competition
evaluation swim.

Nippers for this age group will continue to develop their skills as a junior lifesaver whilst also getting an
introduction to some of the skills that a volunteer lifesaver has. Under 10 nippers will:
• Further understand the club’s role within surf lifesaving in Australia.
• Understand the natural water cycle and water collection methods and identify ways in which water
usage can be reduced/recycled.
• Identify and demonstrate the SunSmart guidelines and understand the consequences of skin
damage caused by sunburn.
• Identify how rips are formed and what they look like and learn how to escape from a rip.
• Understand the basic principles of resuscitation.
• Learn and be able to demonstrate directional signals.
• Learn how to prevent or stop an emergency from happening.
• Recognise a rescue tube and what it is used for.
• Recognise and demonstrate how body boards can be used to assist a distressed swimmer.
• Learn how to negotiate the surf on nipper boards.
• Develop further confidence in surf swimming and body surfing techniques.
• Further develop sprinting and beach flag techniques.
• Participate in both land based and ocean-based team activities.
• Can represent the club at inter-club competitions, however this is optional, and they must have
completed their competition evaluation swim.

Nippers for this age group will continue to develop their skills as a junior lifesaver and learn important lifesaving techniques. Under 11 nippers will:
• Further understand the club’s role within surf lifesaving in Australia.
• Recognise the difference between renewable and non-renewable energy generation and its impact on the surf club.
• Recognise ‘at risk’ people in a beach environment and identify actions that can be taken to help them avoid dangerous situations.
• Identify the principles of DRSABCD. Recognise and manage patients suffering from cuts and abrasions, bleeding from the nose, sprained muscle ligaments and sunburn.
• Perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) techniques.
• Recognise the importance of beach safety signage and identify and understand safety signage on their beach.
• Develop further confidence in the surf by independently catching waves on nipper boards, surf swimming and body surfing.
• Learn how to perform an ironman/ironwoman race.
• Further develop starting techniques for beach sprinting and beach flags.
• Be part of a team and learn how to perform board rescue races, board relay races, cameron relay races and beach sprint relays.
• Can represent the club at inter-club competitions, however this is optional, and they must have completed their competition evaluation swim.

Nippers for this age group will continue to consolidate their skills as a junior lifesaver as their confidence develops both on the beach and in the ocean. Under 12 nippers will:
• Understand the rights and responsibilities as a member of surf lifesaving Australia.
• Understand how weather can affect both the beach environment and beach users, identify natural and man-made causes of erosion and their impact on the beach environment.
• Identify the consequences of not being SunSmart, identify what skin cancer is and what causes it.
• Recognise that staying fit and healthy is important as a lifesaver and identify ways to stay fit and healthy during nipper activities.
• Identify the different types of rip currents and how to use rip currents to assist in surf swimming and rescues.
• Identify the role of the body’s circular system, skeletal system, respiratory system and nervous system. Understand how the body’s major organ systems relate to First Aid scenarios.
• Identify the principles of DRSABCD. Recognise and manage patients suffering from cramping, fainting and shock.
• Perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) techniques.
• Demonstrate directional signals.
• Identify the role of a beach patrol and the role of lifesavers during a patrol.
• Recognise and demonstrate how nipper boards can be used to assist a distressed swimmer.
• Develop strategies for negotiating the surf efficiently on nipper boards, surf swimming and body
surfing.

Develop race strategies for beach sprinting and beach flags.
• Be part of a team and perform board rescue races, board relay races, Cameron relay races and
beach sprint relays.
• Can represent the club at inter-club competitions, however this is optional, and they must have
completed their competition evaluation swim.

Nippers for this age group generally have a high level of confidence in the surf and on the beach. They
are involved with mentoring younger nipper age groups and they will have the opportunity to participate
in a Resuscitation camp as the focus for this age group turns toward developing their skills as future
volunteer lifesavers. Under 13 nippers will:
• Understand the basic principles of surf lifesaving Australia membership.
• Understand global warming and climate change to identify their impacts on our beach environment.
• Identify and understand the ten SLSA beach safety tips.
• Participate in a fully supervised overnight camp focusing on resuscitation and first-aid skills such as:
– Identify how to minimise the risk of cross infection when delivering first aid and resuscitation
– Identify the role of the body’s circular system, skeletal system, respiratory system and nervous
system. Understand how the body’s major organ systems relate to First Aid scenarios.
– Identify the principles of DRSABCD. Recognise and manage patient suffering from cuts and
abrasions, bleeding from the nose, sprained muscle ligaments, sunburn, cramping, fainting,
shock, needle-stick injuries and bleeding.
– Perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) techniques.
• Recognise the importance of communication and identify ways to
communicate with beach users.
• Identify volunteer and professional emergency services in the local
area.
• Learn how to swim and perform rescues using rescue tubes.
• Develop strategies for negotiating the surf efficiently on nipper
boards, surf swimming and body surfing.
• Develop race strategies for beach sprinting and beach flags.
• Be part of a team and perform board rescue races, board relay
races, Cameron relay races and beach sprint relays.
• Can represent the club at inter-club competitions, however this is
optional, and they must have completed their competition evaluation
swim.

Nippers in this age group gain the skills required to
become fully qualified volunteer lifesavers. This
occurs during a combined Surf Rescue & Bronze
camp over the September school holidays. Along
with performing volunteer patrols they will continue to
participate in the nipper program. This is an exciting
age group as there are several opportunities for them
to further develop their lifesaving skills, compete in
different disciplines and mentor younger nipper age
groups. They will also graduate from using nipper
boards to using mals. Under 14 nippers will have the
opportunity to:
• Keep participating in the nipper program.
• Participate in a fully supervised week-long camp focusing on resuscitation and first-aid skills to
become a fully qualified volunteer lifesaver.
• Do patrols as a volunteer lifesaver.
• Compete in various disciplines such as:
– Surf Rescue Events – Patrol Competition, First-aid Competition and Champion Lifesaver.
– Surf Board Riding
– Surf Sports Events – same events for nippers
– Note: When older they can compete on surf ski’s, in surfboats as part of a team and IRB
competition.
• Participate in youth development activities

What to Bring

The following items are required to participate in nipper Sundays:
– Swimmers – note it is preferred that nippers wear the Dicky Beach club togs when representing
the club at carnivals.
– Dicky Beach fluorescent pink rashie (Not-faded)
– Dicky Beach green, yellow and white striped club cap (fluorescent green for U6 & U7’s). This cap MUST be worn always once nippers are signed on.

The following items are also recommended for nipper Sundays:
– Swimming goggles

– Hat to wear in between nipper rotations

– Long sleeved shirt to wear for sun protection
– Towel

– Waterbottle & a couple of snacks for throughout nippers

– Wet suit top / Wind jacket on windy or cooler days

– SPF 50+ sunscreen as well as waterproof zinc for your child’s face to ensure sun protection

• Ensure all personal items are clearly labelled including rashies and caps.

map

When and Where We Meet

Dicky Beach Nippers are held at the Dicky Beach Surf Lifesaving Club. Nipper Sunday mornings commence with an 8:15am muster on the grass at the club house and generally finish no later than 11:30am. Nippers is primarily held on Sunday mornings however there are occasions throughout the season where nippers will be held on a Saturday afternoon (Twilight Nippers) which will then be followed by a club BBQ. The season calendar is published on the website and the Dicky Beach Nippers Team App, be aware that these dates are subject to change.

Nipper Communication

Majority of communication from the Surf Club to Nipper Parents is done via Team App. This includes informs parents of camps, carnivals, changes to the normal nipper program and special events. Instructions for setting up and joing the Dicky Beach Team App are attatched below.

Parent Information

• At muster parents/guardians are to sign on their child/children with each respective Age Manager.

• At the conclusion of nippers parents/guardians are to sign off their child/children with each
respective Age Manager.
• Nippers must remove their cap once they are signed off for the day.
• Parents MUST be in attendance on the beach throughout the nipper program with their child. Parents should endeavour to be readily available in the near vicinity of their child’s activity in event their child requires assistance, as Age Managers have many children to supervise. This is particularly important in the younger age groups.
• Parents of green caps must attend all times unless they have designated another carer to be available in their absence.
• If for any reason your child should leave the group, the Age Manager MUST be notified on departure from and return to the activity area.

Camps

This camp is held over a weekend in November where the U13s stay in the club dorms on the Saturday night. Nippers will obtain their resus certificate whilst spending time with their friends in a variety of activities.
This award is a requirement for U13’s to be able to compete at Branch and State Titles.

U14 nippers complete this week-long camp held at Dicky Beach Surf Club and obtain their Surf Rescue Certificate, qualifying them to perform patrols. The camp develops a variety of lifesaving skills whilst
having fun with their mates. The camp which has run for over 20 years is held on the first weekend of the September school holidays. This award is a requirement for those who wish to compete in U14 & U15 lifesaving carnivals.

This new camp will run over three mornings on the second week of the school holidays in September. The camp will teach nippers who have never paddled a board or are learning the skills to assist them to
become competent, so they can enjoy the surf and catch cracker waves!

As per the title, this training camp in January takes the kids into the bush to rough it for three days, where they will spend time with their mates, training, eating, sleeping, more training and having fun! Your nipper iron- person will come back with dirty clothes, sore muscles, lots of chafe and a big smile before they fall asleep. By roughing it, the cost of this camp which is supervised by volunteers from the club is kept to a minimum.

This camp held in January school holidays, is run by the Sunshine Coast Branch of SLSQ to develop future lifesavers by challenging them in a variety of activities. This is a great way for our youth to develop their surf lifesaving skills as well as meet young surf life savers from other Sunshine Coast Surf Life Saving Clubs.

Leadership

Each year Dicky Beach SLSC will select Nipper Club Captains from the Under 13 Age Group, for the successful candidates to represent the club in the following season whilst they are in Under 14s. The process of selecting Nipper Captains presents an opportunity for our young lifesavers to take on a leadership role within the Club. The captains are selected from nominated candidates who have demonstrated a commitment to the Club, its values and act as a role model for younger members.

Looking To Join Nippers?

Learn more about how to register, the fees and requirements below.

Learn More Here