Encyclopedia of Sport: Every sport from around the world

Surf Lifesaving

Surf lifesaving is a competitive surf sport in which the competitions consist of performing various tasks performed by lifeguards on the beach. The sport originated in Australia in the early 20th century. It is extremely popular in Australia and New Zealand, and also has some minor presence in Canada and Europe.

Most competitions for the sport are conducted by surf lifesaving clubs. Competitions are regularly conducted as a part of surf carnivals in which athletes from different clubs compete against each other.

The competitions consist of various beach rescue type of events. Events include a combination of swimming, board riding, surf skiing, mock rescue tasks using surf boats, surf boat racing, and sand running. Most races are for teams but there are also some individual races conducted.

Several types of sure lifesaving competitions are conducted, of which the Ironman Surf Lifesaving competition is the most popular. The other types of races conducted are, Long boat rescue, Rescue & Resuscitation, Beach Sprints, Beach Relays, Beach Flags, Champion Lifesaver and Patrol Competition, First Aid Competition.

Several state level and national level competitions are conducted in Australia every year, in which various clubs from the country compete. The Australian Surf Life Saving Championships is the most popular competition conducted for the sport.

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