Aquatics is a full-time job for the majority of Aquatics International salary survey respondents. Only 16 percent are employed in a situation other than full-time. That appears relatively unchanged from the Aquatics International 2008 survey.

How professionals are employed

Budget Cuts

Due to the recession, state and local government finances are tight, with many communities facing large deficits. As a result, a significant majority (67 percent) of survey respondents have been affected by budget cuts.

Those whose operations have been directly affected by budget cuts as a result of the recession


Does your salary compare with our survey respondents’ compensation? Generally, most first-year lifeguards are making between $8 and $8.99 an hour. The largest percentage of managers (27 percent) make between $21 and $25.99 per hour. Compared with 2008, most managers’ salaries remained the same for 2009.

Starting hourly salary for first-year lifeguards

Salary changes for 2009

Hourly salary for managers

Job Satisfaction

The aquatics operators in our survey are feeling the pressure from cutbacks. Most notable is the increased level of stress. Additionally, 42 percent report that they’ve had to put off making major purchases or life decisions.

Ways budget cuts have affected job satisfaction

How budget cuts have impacted professionals

Now Hiring?

The aquatics industry is experiencing a hiring freeze, according to the Aquatics International survey. A majority (76 percent) expect to hire the same number of employees for 2010 as in 2009.

Comparing staff hiring during fiscal year 2009 with those who will be hired in fiscal year 2010, facility operators say the number is likely to: