back to top

19 Secrets People Who Work In A Leisure Centre Will Never Tell You

Don't even think about the ball pond cleaning rota.

Posted on

1. Children's parties are not as fun as they seem.

IHEARTCATGIFS.TUMBLR.COM / Via giphy.com

Football parties guarantee bruises. Trampoline parties guarantee kids wetting themselves because they jump too much. And why do toddlers insist on getting stuck right at the top of the soft play area?

2. And dealing with children's laughter on a hangover is pretty tough going.

instagram.com

No, we don’t want to play a game. No, we won’t just count to 10 while you hide. And please, please stop poking us.

3. Lifeguards feel like heroes whenever they dive into the pool.

instagram.com / Via giphy.com

4. But really, "lifeguard" just means "cleaner".

instagram.com / Via GIFAKE.NET

Sure, you get to sit in a high chair and look down on a pool for a few hours a day, but let’s not forget the toilet rota, the children’s nosebleeds you'll have to deal with, and the hoovering at the end of the day.

5. And duty managers are just lifeguards in shirts.

instagram.com

You think it sounds glam until you’re racing around the building and shouting into a walkie-talkie, dealing with Slush Puppy spillages, kicking rowdy lads out of the rapids, and hushing pushy parents who complain when their kids' chicken nuggets arrive lukewarm.

6. That said, carrying a whistle makes you feel like a boss.

instagram.com

7. But we rarely get to use them. We spend most of our time watching swimmers and conducting an imaginary version of the Olympics in our heads.

instagram.com

You may not know you're racing against the guy in the lane next to you, but you totally are.

8. And none us can be bothered to wear flip-flops when we're on a pool shift.

instagram.com

We're supposed to either wear flip-flops or cover our feet in those blue plastic bag things. Forget it.

9. Even outside of work, whenever a siren sounds anywhere, anytime, we expect the waves to begin.

CBS / giphy.com

10. Sometimes we wear the wrong name badges, just because.

instagram.com / Via imgur.com

If we're on a particularly long shift, any form of entertainment will do.

11. We've learnt the hard way when it comes to confiding in receptionists.

youtube.com / Via youtube.com

Seriously: There is nothing receptionists don't know.

12. We go to extreme lengths to avoid cleaning the ball pond.

instagram.com

Sure, hoovering them all up into the cleaning machine with a giant sucky tube might be fun. But putting them back in again, one by one, certainly isn’t. Especially when they still come out sticky.

13. But we're amazed by the treasures we find when we do.

BBC 1 / giphy.com

Is that a tenner? Omg.

14. We will always resent 6am starts and working weekends.

Walt Disney Pictures / Via imgur.com

But there is no shift as miserable as a Boxing Day shift.

15. And we've all fallen asleep in the soft play area at some point.

1Voice1Life / Via reddit.com

It's just so squashy and comfy.

16. Everyone's had a sneaky portion of chips behind the desk at least once.

instagram.com / Via instagram.com

It always pays to make friends with the café staff. Greasy fries and that rubbery plastic cheese taste even better when you know they're forbidden.

17. We have a code word that means "bomb threat".

giphy.com

But if I told you what it is, I'd have to kill you. Maybe.

18. Our hair always smells of chlorine and fried food.

instagram.com

19. But no matter how much we moan, the staff perks make the job worthwhile.

BBC / Via giphy.com

Getting a free gym membership and free access to a pool on top of being paid is a pretty good deal.