Nippers Information

INTRODUCTION Welcome to the 2024/2025 Season.

If it's anything like last season, it's going to be sensational.
And with the Country Champs in January just one beach away, we'd love for Shellharbour to be a big presence and make an impact. 'Go harbour !!'

Registrations for Nippers are OPEN !!

Please ensure you get your registrations completed before the 5th October cut-off.
After this date, acceptance of your membership is at the discretion of the club, and late fees will apply.

The dates for Nippers are on our home page calendar.
Nippers is held on Sundays (with a few exceptions - please check our calendar) and starts at 8.45am with a muster on the grassed area in front of the Club. It usually concludes around 10:30

The first day of Nippers for 2023/24 will be Sunday 15th October

There is a lot of additional information below, please take the time to familiarise yourself with it.

Nipper (Parent Memberships)
Shellharbour SLSC requires that at least one parent per family, join and accompany their child(ren) during Nipper/Beach Pup sessions.
If you are not already an Active Member then you will be required to join as a General Member (Nipper Parent/Carer), ensuring you are covered by insurance.
We offer attractive rates for family membership and encourage families to become part of our great Club.

Nippers (Minimum Age)
Children must attain the age of 5 years by 30 September before they can join as a Nipper Member. However, if a child commences after they just turn 5 years, SLSA requires that they must remain in the U6s age group for the following season. In the second season in U6, your child will not receive the Surf Play 1 Certificate as they will have already received it in their first season (provided they were eligible).

Beach Pups
The Beach Pups program (5 years and under), is developed following the start of the Nippers season, and will not begin until the end of November.
Please note that Beach Pups is not a Surf Life Saving program, but is a separate program run by the club in affiliation with Playgroup NSW. You won't find something like this at many other clubs.
Please keep an eye on socials and this website for a start date and further information around the start of November.
The registration closing date above does not apply to Beach Pups.

Nippers (Registrations)
Please confirm your child's Age Group before registering. See the Age Groups table below.
All aspects of registration are completed online .... Refer to Join/Renew

I have registered. What do I need to do before the season starts ?
Prior to the first day of Nippers, you should consider ...
  • Uniform (compulsory) - Your children will need to get Hi-Viz rashies/singlets and coloured age group caps. Refer to Requirements and Soft Gear section below
  • Swim Proficiency (compulsory) - Your children will be required to pass a pool swim proficiency assessment. Refer to Requirements section below
  • Nipper Board (optional) - U9s and above will use boards. The club has a limited number of shared / general use boards to use on Nipper training days. Now it is not essential, but you might consider getting your own board ??? Refer to the Boards section below.
  • Training (optional) - The club runs mid-week training sessions to hone those beach and surf skills. Keep an eye on the socials.

Nippers (Volunteering)
The spirit of volunteerism is the ONLY reason Nippers runs at all. We 100% need all the help we can get. There are so many opportunities to get involved.

I'm keen and I want to help out ?
Behind the scenes, there are always vacant committee positions.
On Nippers days, there's a heap of little jobs people could do to help set up, pack up, support the Age Managers, support the BBQ.
Become an Age Manager - Sure, not an easy prospect, but you're well supported, and it's so very rewarding.
Water Safety ... consider obtainining your Surf Rescue Certificate, pull on a orange rashie and get out amongst it with the kids. No Water Safety = No Nippers 😭
First thing to do, start a conversation ... please Contact us

Membership fees:

Register Early !! ....  A late fee applies to Nippers registrations from October 6 onwards.
Late registrations are very disruptive to Nippers preparations and will require committee approval before being accepted.

Nippers Categorybefore Oct 5from Oct 6
U/6 & U/7-$40$65requires a Parent/Carer
U/8 to U/14-$70$95requires a Parent/Carer
General - Parent/Carer-$55$55
Family-$220$270Active Kids Vouchers cannot be redeemed against the Family Group membership. Read more at join/renew page ...
Cadets U/15+-$55$55

Beach Pups Category
General - Parent/Carer-$55does not apply if you already have children in Nippers. A Nipper parent registration also covers Beach Pups.
Beach Pups-$0requires a Parent/Carer

Age Groups for the 2024/2025 season if your child is born between the following dates:

Age GroupFromToCapColourBoard
U/61st October 2018 - 30th September 2019
U/71st October 2017 - 30th September 2018
U/81st October 2016 - 30th September 2017
Green & Bluesoft *
U/91st October 2015 - 30th September 2016
Red & Whitessoft  
U/101st October 2014 - 30th September 2015
Dark Greensoft  
U/111st October 2013 - 30th September 2014
Yellowsoft / hard
U/121st October 2012 - 30th September 2013
Purplesoft / hard
U/131st October 2011 - 30th September 2012
Light Greensoft / hard
U/141st October 2010 - 30th September 2011
Redracing mal
 * see Board notes below

Board Types:
Soft- A 'foamie'
Hard- A composite (Fibreglass / Epoxy / Carbon)
Refer to the SLSNSW Junior Board Guide for further information / clarification on board types and competition exceptions.
  • - U/8s may receive an introduction to boards as part of Nippers training. They do not require a board though.
  • - U/9-U/10s will use Soft(foamie) boards.
  • - U/11-U/13s typically use Hard(composite) boards, but Soft(foamie) boards are permitted.
  • - U/14s may use a Soft(foamie) racing mal at Nippers, but can only use a Hard(composite) in competition.
  • - The club has a limited number of boards for general/shared use during Nippers training days.
  • - The club offers seasonal hiring of quality boards (subject to availability) Read more...
  • - The club can also assist with a board subsidy for brand new boards (subject to application and approval). Read more...
  • - Useful resources for 2nd hand boards are:
    • Facebook Marketplace
    • Facebook Group "Second Hand Surf Lifesaving Craft, Surf Lifesaving Only"
    • Gumtree
    • GearTrade
  • - Useful resources for purchasing brand new boards:

Mandatory Preliminary Swim Evaluation
All age groups (U/6-U/14) will need to complete a compulsory preliminary (pool swim) evaluation prior to the first day of Nippers.
Your child is unable to participate in any water activities without this.

The first page of the Swim Form details the swim requirements for each Age Group.
Download here: Swim Form

The Club holds scheduled pool swims for this be completed. If you attend one of these sessions, you do not need to bring the Swim Form with you, but you MUST be registered and have paid your fees
Please keep an eye on emails, socials, and website for the dates, times and booking instructions. Bookings are essential.
If you cannot attend one of the Club's scheduled pool swims, it is your responsibility to see that the swim form is completed.
The assessment can be completed by any accredited swim teacher. If your child(ren) do swimming lessons or squad training, enquire with your swim coach if they will assess them. Return the completed form as instructed in the form.
Competition Evaluation
To be able to compete in carnivals, U/8-U/14 will need to complete a Competition Evaluation (open water swim). This will be conducted during the first few weeks of Nippers.
No Rashie = No Training 😭
It is mandatory for U/8-U/14s to wear a high visibility rash singlet when taking part in water activities at Sunday Nippers and at water training during the week (for swim/iron/board/wade). These singlets are available for purchase in our soft gear shop.
Age Group Caps
Every Nipper member must wear a coloured age cap during all Nipper activities. Refer to the Age Groups table above. These are available at the soft gear shop.
Competition Caps
We also have Club competition caps available for external carnivals.
Club Champs (Award Qualification)
To be eligible for a 1st,2nd,3rd age group award at the end of the season, your child must have attended 70% of Nippers Training days (min 14 out of 20).

We have a variety of swimwear and other items available for purchase in the Soft Gear Shop.

Hi-viz Rashie/Singlets and Age Group Caps (both compulsory for Nippers) are available from the Soft Gear Shop. There are also swimwear and clothing items for sale and order.

The Soft Gear Shop is located upstairs in our Clubhouse and is open every Sunday between 8:30am to 8:45am (during Nippers season).

For pre-season sales opportunities, please keep an eye on emails and socials for opening dates and times.

If you would like to purchase Shellharbour SLSC branded swimwear (preferred for interclub team event competition), please order direct with our supplier Fashion Fish. Contact them first to request an estimated time to delivery.

Although soft gear is available to purchase throughout the season, most families purchase their needs at the beginning of each year.
To keep costs down, we make every effort to purchase quality goods at the most competitive prices available. For all Soft Gear enquiries outside of shop hours - please email JAC Secretary

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