TASMANIA'S North-West Coast has a long and strong surf lifesaving tradition like no other region in the state.
With a club in almost every coastal town from Boat Harbour to Port Sorell, being a part of one has almost become a way of life.
After several years of being merged with Devonport, the Port Sorell Surf Life Saving Club has slowly established its own identity and become a crucial part of the town since it separated in 2000 - rescuing on average 20 people a year from grief in the water.
It now has more than 200 members - mostly young nippers learning lifelong water and personal skills.
"We are basically a nippers' club and we have families come in from Launceston or George Town, who are holiday people and are looking for something for their family to engage in for the eight weeks the children are on school holidays," Port Sorell club president Jo- Anne Coates said.
"We now have about 20 people in the club in the over-14 age group, so we are slowly increasing the age bracket."
Port Sorell public relations officer Gina Harvey said surf lifesaving clubs were popular in the region because North- West Coasters' considered water safety an important part of life.
"I think it's because we live by the coast and a lot of people are attracted to the water and consider that water safety is probably quite an important thing for their children to develop - plus it is also a sport," Mrs Harvey said.
"Instead of children being inside and kicking back, our beaches and surf clubs offer families and children another alternative."
Mrs Harvey said when she and her family moved to Port Sorell to live three years ago, she turned to the club to get to know the local community.
"There is good camaraderie among surf clubs so you are a part of a group that volunteers, which generates a community spirit and the kids learn to help out from a young age," she said.
"It is a sport that can involve the whole family - not everyone has to get in the water, there is a lot of stuff they can do with coaching and training or with club- house administration."