Nippers on Sundays….what to expect and how to get involved

Under 6, under 7, under 8 and under 9 age groups : Roll call at 8:15 am for 8.30am start.  Finish at 9.30am.

Under 10, under 11, under 12, under 13 and under 14 age groups : Roll call at  9.15am for 9.30am start.  Finish between 11am to 11.30am.

The U-6 and U-7 children are given a non-competitive introduction to beach and water activities. They are encouraged to complete water wade relays and water bucket relays every week to learn how to negotiate the waters edge. For the Under 6’s and 7’s the emphasis is on fun and education, not competition. At this age children are encouraged to perform to their potential. There is no winner just team and parent support.

The U8 age group engage in waters edge wade races as well as beach activities.

The U9’s and above are introduced to regular swimming and board events most Sundays in a competitive environment. All age groups are encouraged to perform within their capabilitiies, with no pressure placed on participants.

From the under 8’s, children are eligible to compete at local, branch and state carnivals.

A parent or guardian is required to be at the beach at all times during junior activities. The Freshwater Board of Junior Development is not a child minding service.

Club Nipper Swim

Every Sunday @ 10.40am water's edge in front of the clubhouse.

This season we have a handicapped nipper swim for any fully proficient nippers in u9's through to u14's. The first swim will be in 4 waves and then times recorded and subsequently run as a true handicap event, to ensure all nippers get an equal chance and enjoy some banter with their club mates. This will emulate the senior club swim and mirror image awards for a variety of categories.


For safety reasons ALL children MUST wear a nipper cap during ALL Sunday activities and are to be removed once Sunday junior activities have ceased. From 1 October 2013 all nippers U8 - U14 engaged in water activities MUST wear a pink HiViz vest which will be sold as part of the nipper uniform.

All of our nippers wear colour coded caps, representing the age group they are in. Children are also encouraged to wear club costumes and club swimsuits.

The U14’s will be the only group wearing the traditional Freshwater caps at regular Sunday nippers. The traditional Freshwater competition cap will still be used but only for competing at Club Championships and when representing Freshwater SLSC at carnivals throughout the season.

Whilst sun hats and sunscreen are not provided, these items are strongly recommended at all times. Protecting your child from the sun’s harmful rays is a parental responsibility.

SLIP (on a shirt)

SLOP (on sunscreen) and


SLAP (on a hat)


Age Managers

The week to week activities of each age group are lead by one or more age managers, who are endorsed by the Junior Committee. The primary role of the age managers is to educate our junior members, in a friendly, fun and safe environment, about the surf and surf life saving. If you are interested in becoming an age manager please contact a member of the Junior activities Committee.

Age Managers and Trainers can be found here.

Parent Involvement

We encourage all parents to participate with their children in all activities. Running a successful club of this size only comes from the ongoing commitment of volunteers and help offered by parents. We are a family club and we need the help of every family to share the workload so that we can continue to maintain a high standard and enjoyable environment for all families.

Support from parents, to play roles as a committee member, age manager, judges, recorder, water safety and just good all round extra hands makes life easier for all as well as enhancing your child’s enjoyment of nippers.

Active Parent involvement in any part of nipper activities is a unique and essential component of Nippers. Such ‘activities’ could include running in a race with your kids on the sand, to holding a flag in the water or helping out on the BBQ.

At the beginning of each season, training is arranged for parents interested in obtaining their Bronze Medallion. This has proven very successful over the past few seasons. It is essential that as many parents as possible obtain their Bronze to meet the minimum water safety requirements for SLSA.

Many parents have then gone on to obtain their ARC, (Advanced Resuscitation Certificate), IRB Licence, IRB Crewman’s Certificate, or many more awards. It helps teach our children, as well as being a great example to them.

Parents without life saving qualifications also have a role to play as -

  • Committee members
  • Age Managers
  • Age Managers assistants
  • Setting up the beach
  • Carnival assistants (more information available at competition and education page.)

If you would like to help out with any part of the Freshwater Nipper programme please contact the Secretary.

It is a requirement that all those helping or participating in any way have a Parent Membership. This is a policy now affecting all Surf Life Saving Clubs. As such, we have introduced a special ‘Freshwater Nipper Parent Membership’ to meet this requirement. We require at least one parent to be a financial member - either as an active member in their own right, or as an insured nipper parent. The membership is necessary to permit parents to assist with nipper activities and be covered by SLSC insurance should any mishap occur while involved. Please assist us to support your children by taking up this membership. Many thanks for your support.

PLEASE NOTE: Nipper Parent Membership is not required for existing financial members of the club.

Club Equipment

Equipment is supplied by the club and is available for the use of all registered junior members when taking part in nipper activities. The age managers are the sole people responsible for allocating equipment at Sunday activities.

If you use it, then it’s your responsibility to wash it and put it back after Sunday junior activities.

The Freshwater function rooms are available for hire. Please click here for more information.


Allocated Boards

Freshwater Surf Club offer registered and proficient Nippers the opportunity to apply for an allocated board. These boards are leased for the season to those Nippers that are wanting to compete and train. When a board is allocated to a child, the child must attend at least one of the Club organised board training sessions each week. The child will compete in individual events at all local carnivals including the Bennett Ironman & Board Class, Branch and State Championships and if selected, in team events at Branch and State Championships. Any request for an exception to the above is to be made to the Competition Officer prior to submitting an application.

Allocated Board Policy and Application form can be found in Documents tab of Team App. Please refer to your Age Manager.

Care of Boards

For a printable version of Nipper boards do’s and dont's click here.