THE iconic scene of lifeguards marching on beaches with life reels is being revived by a group of dedicated marchers from the Secret Harbour Surf Club.
The team of 12 marchers has been preparing for the Australian March Past Championships to be held at North Kirra Beach in Queensland in March
Last Friday, they paraded in their new marching bathers for the first time under the watchful eye of coach Robyn Bevan on the Rockingham foreshore.
Group co-ordinator Lisa Johns said the marchers had been training for the past five months, with training sessions increasing as they get closer to the big day.
Johns said the group took part in its first competition at North Cottesloe last Sunday and came sixth in the competition.
“Our team came sixth, which we are so proud of, considering some of the teams have been together for over 10 years and we have only been together for five months,” she said.
The march past event involves a team of 12 people marching in formation around a set course in time with music.
The team includes members carrying a reel, wearing a belt and carrying the club’s standard flag.
Teams march in formation following commands and they are judged on factors such as timing, arm and leg swing, space and dressing, body carriage and presentation.
Bevan said march pasts have been part of surf carnivals for many years and originally consisted of teams of 20.
“The march past is an example of the significant impact returned servicemen had on the development of surf lifesaving and competition in the early days,” he said.
Bevan said he felt proud watching the marchers in action.
I have always wanted to train a team,” he said. “I did have the honour of winning a state medal with my junior team, a very proud moment indeed, but my passion was to train a women’s march past team.”
Follow the team at the Secret Harbour Surf Lifesaving Club facebook page.