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BSA Swim Test

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The BSA Swim Test is required before scouts can participate in any Aquatics Activities:



1. Every scout should already know the basics of swimming. If not then they should partake in a "Learn to Swim" class with a qualified instructor.
2. This merit badge activity requires access to a large swimming pool. Consult with your MBC or spend the weekend at a BSA Scout Camp.
3. For the typical patrol (4-10 scouts) you should find that there is plenty for everyone to become fully "immersed" in the activity and to have fun.

Learn to Swim

  • Read "Scout Handbook" - Chapter 5 - "Aquatics"
    • Learn to Swim for Beginners - YouTube Starter Tutorial - LEARN to SWIM & FLOAT for BEGINNERS (easy tutorial)
    • Learn to Swim for GrownUps Afraid of the Water - YouTube Starter Tutorial - In this video, coach Mike will teach us how to swim. Balaji is an adult beginner afraid of the water. After almost drowning in a lake last summer, he reached out to me (Jonny Nitro – creator) asking if we could teach him. If you follow the steps laid out here by Coach Mike in this video, then you too can learn how to swim! (10 Video series)
    • Learn How to Dive for Swimming - YouTube Starter Tutorial -
    • BSA Safe Swim Defense - Scouting Multimedia Service

First Class Scout : Swim Test

All scouts should have already passed both BSA Swim Tests even before starting work on this merit badge !!!

Req #2: "BSA Swimmer Test: Jump feet first into water over the head in depth. Level off and swim 75 yards in a strong manner using one or more of the following strokes: sidestroke, breaststroke, trudgen, or crawl; then swim 25 yards using an easy, resting backstroke. The 100 yards must be completed in one swim without stops and must include at least one sharp turn. After completing the swim, rest by floating."

Aquatics Merit Badges

Sometimes it is easier by doing two or more merit badges together as a joint activity:

See Also

  • 9 Things to Know about Merit Badges - BoysLife.org - There are more than 135 merit badges. By earning them, you can learn about sports, crafts, science, trades, business, and future careers. Here’s how to get the most out of your merit badge experience.