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Swimming

Trick or Swim or Skate

This Halloween, give the ghosts and goblins at your door a treat that they’re sure to love!

During the month of October, the City of Ottawa is offering Trick or Swim or Skate tickets as a healthy and fun alternative to the traditional candy overload. Kids ages three to 15 can redeem their ticket from November 1, 2018 to January 31, 2019 during regular scheduled public and family swims and skates at City pools and select arenas.

Tickets are affordably priced at only $10 for 10 tickets, and are available at the following locations:

Tickets are not valid for wave swims or specialty skating sessions.

Swimming schedules

Check out the swim schedules.

Choose how you want to submerge yourself in the City’s pools

  • Lane swim: Continuous lane swim workout. Children age eight to 10 must pass the facility's swim test. There may be opportunities for lane swims during family and public swims.
  • Family swim: An unstructured swim time open to children and youth when accompanied by an adult who participates in the water. Adults do not have to bring a child to these swims. Check with your aquatic facility for lane swimming opportunities during family swims.
  • Public swim: An unstructured swim time open to all ages. Non-swimmers aged 10 and under, and all children aged 7 and under must be accompanied by a participating adult or youth, at least 14 years of age, responsible for the direct supervision of the child and actively swimming within arms reach at all times. Children aged 8, 9 and 10 must be tested to demonstrate their ability to swim 25M uninterrupted in order to be permitted to swim unaccompanied. During public swims at wave pools, the waves will be turned off. Check with your aquatic facility for lane swimming opportunities during public swims.
  • Wave swim: A swim with the waves activated at a wave pool open to all ages. Non-swimmers aged 10 and under, and all children aged 7 and under must be accompanied by a participating adult or youth, at least 14 years of age, responsible for the direct supervision of the child and actively swimming within arms reach at all times. Children aged 8, 9 and 10 must be tested to demonstrate their ability to swim 25M uninterrupted in order to be permitted to swim unaccompanied. Available at the Kanata Leisure Centre, Ray Friel Recreation Complex and Splash Wave Pool. 
  • Teen swim: Unstructured swim for teens age 13 to 19.
  • Women-only swim: Unstructured swim for women and girls 14 years and older.
  • Women-only family swim: Unstructured swim for women and their children. Women do not have to bring children to participate. Boys over the age of six are not permitted.
  • Swim for persons with disabilities: Free swim available at the Jack Purcell Community Centre. Participants must complete a participant information form. If you need assistance in the change room, you must bring an attendant who will be admitted for free.
  • Pre-school swim: Unstructured pool playtime for parents and their pre-schoolers in limited pool space.
  • 50+ Vitality: A 30-minute class of light exercise followed by a public swim for people 50 years and older. Available at the Canterbury Recreation Complex, Lowertown Pool and St. Laurent Complex.
  • 50+ swim: Lap swimming for adults 50 years and older.

Public swimming

The City has many places for you and your family to enjoy the water. Each location offers a broad range of fun and athletic programs.

  • 20 indoor pools, nine outdoor pools and three wave pools 
  • 56 wading pools and 127 splash pads
  • Four beaches 

Browse and sign up for lessons or programs in our Fall 2018 and Winter 2019 Recreation eGuides:

You can also join a drop-in swim session at a City pool near you.

Pool locations

East Ottawa: Indoor pools

East Ottawa: Outdoor pools (summer only)

South Ottawa: Indoor pools

West Ottawa: Indoor pools

West Ottawa: Outdoor pools (summer only)

Central Ottawa: Indoor pools

Wave pools

Jobs in aquatics

Lifeguard

Qualified lifeguard or on the path to becoming one?

We want you! Did you know the City Ottawa has aquatic job opportunities available for candidates at all stages of the certification process? 

Register for and attend the upcoming screening session on Wednesday, September 5:

  • 4 to 6 pm,  check-in at 3:30 pm
  • Location: Splash Wave Pool
  • Register with barcode: 1421523

Join our team today as:

  • Wading Pool Attendant (seasonal)
  • Aquatic Waterfront Lifeguard (seasonal beaches)
  • Aquatic Lifeguard / Instructor

What are the required entry-level qualifications?

Wading Pool Attendant:
  • Must be 16 yrs of age by June 1, 2019
  • Standard First Aid with CPR ‘C’ / AED
  • AODA
  • Recommended Bronze Cross or National Lifeguard (NL)
Aquatic Waterfront Lifeguard:
  • National Lifeguard (NL)
  • Standard First Aid with CPR ‘C’ / AED
  • Oxygen Therapy or Airway Management
  • AODA
Aquatic Lifeguard / Instructor:
  • National Lifeguard (NL)
  • Standard First Aid with CPR ‘C’ / AED
  • Red Cross Water Safety Instructor (WSI)
  • Oxygen Therapy or Airway Management
  • AODA

How do I start the Application Process? 

  1. Apply on line at ottawa.ca/careers
    1. Applications for the seasonal Wading Pool Attendant, Aquatic Waterfront Lifeguard and Summer Aquatic Lifeguard / Instructor positions can be submitted online effective February 2019
    2. Applications for year-round Aquatic Lifeguard / Instructor positions can be submitted online from May 22, 2018 to May 19, 2019, competition 52169625
  2. Register for and attend the upcoming screening session:
    1. Wednesday, September 5
    2. 4 to 6 pm, Check-in at 3:30 pm
    3. Splash Wave Pool
    4. Register: 1421523
  3. Email questions to:
    1. Wading Pool Attendant: seasonalhiring@ottawa.ca
    2. Aquatic Waterfront Lifeguard:  aquaticshiringteam@ottawa.ca
    3. Aquatic Lifeguard / Instructor:  aquaticshiringteam@ottawa.ca

What is a screening?

The screening is an in-person interview or a skills verification session consisting NL and Standard First Aid items. It allows your hiring supervisor to know that your skills meet the expected standard.

Wading Pool Attendant Screening Items:

  • In person interview

Waterfront Lifeguard Screening items:

  • 20 metre head-up approach to a non-swimmer with a 5 metre carry 
  • Deep water spinal turnover with 15 metre carry 
  • Submerged victim recovery with removal 
  • First aid (arterial bleed on inner forearm)
  • 200 metre swim under 3 minutes
  • 50 metre swim, submerged mannequin recovery, carry 25 metre in under 1.5 minutes
  • 25 metre underwater swim 
  • Recover 3, 20lb bricks in under 2 minutes
  • Conscious to unconscious choking infant

Aquatic Lifeguard Screening items:

  • 20 metre head-up approach to a non-swimmer with a 5 metre carry (reach victim in 18 seconds or less) 
  • Deep water spinal turnover with 15 metre carry 
  • Submerged victim recovery with removal 
  • Conscious to unconscious choking infant 
  • Recover 3, 20lb bricks in under 2 minutes
  • First aid (arterial bleed on inner forearm)

When are the screenings?

Pool screenings
Screening Type Date Time Location Barcode
Wading Pool Attendant Dates, times, and locations will be available January 2019      
Aquatic Lifeguard/Instructor Wednesday, September 5, 2018

4 to 6 pm

Check-in 3:30 pm

Splash Wave Pool 1421523
Aquatic Lifeguard/Instructor Friday, November 2, 2018

7 to 9 pm

Check-in 6:30 pm

Brewer Pool 1421522

When you register in person for the screening, you will be required to provide the certification dates of all of your qualifications. However, if you register online this feature is not available. In these cases, please email aquaticshiringteam@ottawa.ca  to provide the certification dates for your required entry-level qualifications.

How should I prepare for a screening?

Wading Pool Attendant candidates should consult the list of wading pool locations available on ottawa.ca to determine preferred work locations. 

It is recommended that Aquatic Lifeguard / Instructor and Aquatic Waterfront Lifeguard candidates practice all items beforehand. Facilities are looking to hire those candidates with strong first aid and lifeguarding skills.Please note that many of the facilities we use for the screenings have a deeper deep-end than you may be used to. We encourage you to go to the pool where the screenings will be hosted and practice going to the bottom of their deepest point to ensure your success with the brick recovery item.

What do I need to bring to the screening?

Wading Pool Attendant candidates:

  • Copy of certification for Standard First Aid, CPR ‘C’ with AED and AODA
  • Police Record Check for the Vulnerable Sector (both original and copy required)

Aquatic Lifeguard / Instructor and Aquatic Waterfront Lifeguard candidates:

  • Bathing suit
  • towel

Unless you have been asked otherwise, you do not need to bring proof of certification to the screening as this will be verified prior to the screening date.

Am I allowed to wear goggles to the screening?

The use of goggles is not permitted at any time throughout the screening. This is to ensure the most realistic simulation of any situation possible. As no exceptions will be made, please come prepared with your glasses or an extra pair of contacts.

What happens if I fail a screening item?

While we hope that you are able to pass every item the first time, we will make every effort to give you a second chance to complete the item at the screening. If you are still unable to complete the item, the evaluator will recommend that you practice more and attend the next screening.

I have completed the screening. Now what?

After having successfully completing a skills screening, you will be invited to contact the Program Coordinator at the facilities you are interested in working in by phone or email to arrange an interview. This contact information will be provided to you at the screening.  Interviews will be scheduled based on hiring requirements at each facility. 

Am I allowed to apply at multiple facilities?

Yes. Some facilities need more staff than others and some have different shifts available. Just inform your interviewer if you intend to apply at multiple facilities.

I have applied, completed the screening, and completed my interview. How do I know if I have a job?

Upon completion of interviews, facilities will be following up with those candidates successful in obtaining a position to provide them with an offer of employment.

Please note that candidates that register for the screening that do not have all mandatory qualifications completed by the screening date will be withdrawn.

Splash pads (summer only)

Splash pads are now closed for the season.

Young or old, splash pads are a great way to cool off in the summer.

Children are to be supervised at all times while using splash pad.

This interactive map shows you the locations of Ottawa’s splash pads. Splash pads marked in light blue are accessible.

Wading pools (summer only)

Bring the kids to a neighbourhood wading pool to cool off and play. This interactive map shows you the locations of Ottawa's wading pools, along with their dates and hours of operation.

In order to maximize operational hours to the public, wading pools will be open during draining procedures. Staff will notify swimmers once the water has reached a depth that is no longer safe.

Fees

There is no cost to swim at a City of Ottawa wading pool.

Updates and closures

  • All wading pools are closed for the 2018 season. 

 

Safety and supervisory standards in City pools and beaches

There are safety standards so that everyone can enjoy the City’s swimming pools. If you are unsure of how these requirements apply to you, please contact the pool before your visit.

  • To ensure adequate supervision and to identify people at greater risk, all swimmers need to wear a City-issued coloured wristband to get in the pool.
  • Non-swimmers and those who cannot pass the facility's swim test must remain in shallow water.
  • Each ratio below indicates the maximum number of children that one responsible person 14 years or older can supervise. The parent or guardian must be in proper bathing attire, in the water, actively participating and within arm’s reach at all times.

Supervisory standards in City pools

Age Requirements Guardian:child ratio Wristband
5 years and under Accompanied by parent/guardian 14 years or older who must be actively participating and within arms reach at all times 1:2 Orange
6 to 7 Accompanied by parent/guardian 14 years or older who must be actively participating and within arms reach at all times

1:4 or 1:6 if wearing life jackets

Orange
8 to 10, did not pass facility's swim test Always accompanied by parent/guardian 14 years or older 1:4 or 1:8 if wearing life jackets Orange
8 to 10, passed facility's swim test No guardian supervision required N/A Green

Supervisory standards in City beaches

Age Requirements Guardian:child ratio
5 years and under Accompanied by parent/guardian 14 years or older who must be actively participating and within arms reach at all times 1:2
6 to 7 years Accompanied by parent/guardian 14 years or older who must be actively participating and within arms reach at all times

1:4 or 1:6 if wearing life jackets/PFDs

8 to 10 years Accompanied by parent/guardian 14 years or older who must be actively participating and within arms reach at all times 1:4 or 1:8 if wearing life jackets/PFDs
11 to 13 years Accompanied by parent/guardian 14 years or older 1:15

High-risk people must be in a ratio of 1:1. High-risk people have a condition or illness that may put them at risk in a pool, such as frequent seizures or fainting conditions. This includes people who are unable to control their behaviour or impulses and require direct supervision. The supervisory ratios for groups of high-risk people will be determined by pool staff based on the specific needs of the people and their associated risks. We recommend you call the pool before you visit.

Swimming fees

Indoor and outdoor pool fees

Brewer Pool, Canterbury Pool, Champagne Fitness Centre, Deborah Anne Kirwan Pool, François Dupuis Recreation Centre, Jack Purcell Community Centre, Lowertown Pool, Pinecrest Recreation Centre, Plant Recreation Centre, Sawmill Creek Pool, Splash Wave Pool, St-Laurent Complex

  • Two years and under: Free
  • Three to 18 years: $2.50
  • Full-time students: $2.50
  • 19 to 64 years: $5.00
  • 65 years and older: $3.25
  • One to two adults and their children: $2.50 per person
  • Groups of 10 or more: $2.25 per person

Leisure pool fees

Bob MacQuarrie Recreation Complex-Orléans, Goulbourn Recreation Complex, Kanata Leisure Centre and Wave Pool, Minto Recreation Complex-Barrhaven, Nepean Sportsplex, Ray Friel Recreation Complex, Richcraft Recreation Complex-Kanata, Walter Baker Sports Complex

  • Two years and under: Free 
  • Three to 18 years: $3.75
  • Full-time students: $3.75
  • 19 to 64 years: $5.75
  • 65 years and older: $4.50
  • One to two adults and their children: $3.75 per person
  • Groups of 10 or more: $3.25 per person
  • Whirlpool/steam (Kanata Leisure Pool and Walter Baker Sports Centre): $4.50

Wave pool fees

Kanata Leisure Centre and Wave Pool, Ray Friel Recreation Complex, Splash Wave Pool

  • Two years and under: Free
  • Three to 18 years: $6.50 
  • Full-time students: $6.50
  • 19 to 64 years: $9.00
  • 65 years and older: $7.75
  • One to two adults and their children: $6.50 per person
  • Groups of 10 or more residents: $5.75 per person
  • Groups of 10 or more non-residents: $6.50 per person

Aquafit fees

Drop in for a general Aquafitness class.

  • Seniors, students and youth: $7.50
  • Adults: $9.00

Swimming membership

A swim membership gives you access to scheduled public swim sessions (excluding wave swims) at all City pools. A combined swim and aquafitness membership gives you access to a variety of fitness classes in different depths of water.

Membership fees include HST.

Membership fees for leisure, outdoor and standard pools

Category 1 month 3 months 6 months 1 year
Seniors, students, youth, children $23.00 $46.00 $84.00 $152.25
Adult $50.00 $99.75 $182.75 $331.25
One to two adults and their children $97.25 $194 $355.25 $613.00

Membership fees for the Kanata Leisure Centre, the Ray Friel Recreation Complex and the Splash Wave Pool

Category 1 month 3 months 6 months 1 year
Seniors, students, youth, children  $47.00  $106.25  $162.75 $267.75
Adult  $63.75  $145.75  $234.00 363.75
One to two adults and their children  $118.25  $235.50  $408.50 $746.25

Aquafitness membership fees

Category 1 month 3 months 6 months 1 year
Seniors, students, youth, children  $51.75  $103.00  $188.50  $342.00
Adults  $64.25  $128.25  $234.75  $426.00
One to two adults and their children $104.00 $230.50 $412.75 $766.25

Combined swim and aquafitness membership fees

Category 1 month 3 months 6 months 1 year
Seniors, students, youth, children  $57.50  $114.25  $209.50  $380.00
Adult  $71.50  $142.25  $260.75  $473.25
One to two adults and their children $110.25 $256.00 $468.00 $851.50

Safety and admission requirements for wading pools

  • Height requirement: 45 inches (115 cm)
  • Facility's swim test: Must be able to independently recover from floating on their front and back, and be able to cross the deepest part of the pool unassisted.

Each ratio below indicates the maximum number of children that one responsible person 14 years or older can supervise. They may not have any additional children under their care unless the other children are at least six years old and able to pass the facility's swim test or meet the height requirement.

General supervisory standards for wading pools

Age Admission requirements Guardian:child ratio
Five years and under

Parent/guardian 14 years or older must be within arms reach at all times

Child must wear a wristband

1:4
Six to nine years, height under 115 cm and cannot pass facility's swim test

Parent/guardian 14 years or older must be within arms reach at all times

Child must wear a wristband

1:4
Six to nine years, height at least 115 cm or passes facility's swim test Actively supervised by parent or guardian 14 years or older N/A
10 years and older No supervision, facility swim test or minimum height required N/A

Supervisory standards for camps at wading pools

Age Admission requirements Staff:child ratio
Five years and under

Staff must be within arms reach at all times

Child must wear a wristband

1:4
Six to nine years, height under 115 cm and cannot pass facility's swim test

Staff must be within arms reach at all times

Child must wear a wristband

1:4
Six to nine years, height at least 115 cm or passes facility's swim test Always accompanied by staff 1:10
10 years and older, height at least 115 cm or passes facility's swim test Always accompanied by staff 1:15

Beaches

The 2018 lifeguard season is over. The beaches are no longer supervised.

Volleyball nets and stand up paddleboards are no longer available.

The pavilion washrooms are no longer available at Westboro Beach, Petrie Island and Britannia Beach. The pavilion washrooms are available at Mooney’s Bay every weekend noon until 6 PM until October 8 2018 (includes Thanksgiving Monday).

Comfort stations are located at Petrie Island until September 27 2018, at Mooney’s Bay  and Britannia Beach until October 30 2018.