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How to Become a Bodyguard — Knowing All the Ins & Outs

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Are you looking for a new career path and want to know how to become a bodyguard? Or are you having difficulties landing jobs in the industry, and want to figure out if you’re doing something wrong? Either way, we’re here to help and show you how to become a bodyguard.

But before we get into it all, we just want to make something clear. There is no one way to become a bodyguard or build a career. Everyone takes different paths to success, so there’s no need to stress too much if you’re just starting out.

What Do Bodyguards Do Exactly?

A few weeks ago, EP Ramblers wrote a fantastic article on EP pretenders, and the people doing this industry a huge disservice. That article sparked a massive debate because a lot of people don’t seem to really grasp what EP agents and bodyguards do. They think it’s all about hanging out on yachts and flaunting other people’s success on social media. But the truth is much different than that.

As a bodyguard, one of your main responsibilities is ensuring that your client or principal is safe while in your care. That part is what most people know about bodyguarding. However, many EP hopefuls don’t know the first thing about actually making that happen.

It is so much more than just standing beside someone, looking menacing, and shooting daggers at anyone who comes close.

As a bodyguard, most of what you’ll be doing are risk assessments, travel management, creating risk profiles, doing security checks, and pre-searches. And that’s just the tip of the EP iceberg. 

If you’re not interested in improving your skill set, networking, and training constantly, we think you should skip the bodyguard profession. Maybe you’d be better suited for office work.

How to Become a Bodyguard

Now let’s get to the real reason you’re here — let’s talk about how to become a bodyguard, and what you’ll actually need to do to get a career. And as with everything in life, it all begins with research.

1. Do Your Research

Before making any final, life and career-changing decisions, you first need to research your potential profession. That means knowing the necessary requirements, salary expectations, challenges, and benefits to working in that field. First, let’s start with the requirements.

To become a bodyguard, you need to be at least 18 years of age (in most countries). Keep in mind that certain companies will also require you to have a certain level of experience beforehand.

You’re also going to be a subject of identity and criminal checks, and failing those, you might not be able to work. Then come the requirements that will vary from one place to the next, and from one contract to the other.

However, most places require you to have some sort of basic first aid training, as well as a completed SIA-approved program. Then, there are companies that require you to have a driver’s license, as well as a license to carry a weapon. But we’ll get to that a bit later.

2. Make Sure That You Have the Right Skills

As we said earlier, working as a bodyguard, and in the EP industry in general, is an extremely specific and challenging job. You’ll be faced with situations that most civilians don’t come across in a million years. So the first, and probably most important skill you need is resourcefulness. 

And that’s the perfect segway for our next point — hard vs. soft skills.

Given how many misconceptions there are about bodyguards, a lot of people think that it’s all about the hard skills. That you’re only as good as your shooting score or your ability to fight, which is not even close to being true.

In the EP industry, it’s all about soft skills. Can you think outside the box, do research, create risk profiles, observe threats? These are the things that are actually going to make you successful.

With that said, we’re not trying to downplay hard skills. Speaking of which, the most important ones have to be driving, firearm retention, and hand-to-hand combat. 

how to become a bodyguard

3. Get the Necessary Qualifications and Training

Contrary to common misconceptions, you don’t need a military or law enforcement background to work as a bodyguard. You also don’t need a college diploma, but it might help land you better-paying jobs. What you do need is a GED or high school diploma because no company or principal will hire you without one.

You also can’t work without CPR or first-aid programs, and the Red Cross has a pretty popular one. It will give you the necessary qualification, and you can even find courses online. Then comes firearm training, which albeit overhyped, is still necessary. 

From that point, you need to check the regulations within your state or the companies that you want to apply for. They might require you to have other specific certifications, which you might need to complete.

Landing Your First Job

One of the last steps on your road to learning how to become a bodyguard is actually landing your first contract. There’s of course, the traditional route of finding a company that hires contractors and trying for a job there.

Then, there’s the option of striking out on your own, which, if you’re only starting, is next to impossible. Remember, this industry is all about the people you know. So without the proper contacts and recommendations, you won’t be able to find employment on your own.

With that said, through all your training, you’re bound to meet a lot of people who’ll be your colleagues down the line. Make sure that you’re building those relationships, and saving those contacts because they will prove invaluable.

To Sum Up

We hope that we’ve answered your question How to become a bodyguard, and that you now know the level of commitment and training it takes. If you thought that this could be a side-hustle over the weekend, think again.

Bodyguarding and the EP industry are extremely competitive, and there are a ton of qualified professionals working out there, some of whom are featured on our site. So don’t think you’ll be pulling a fast one on anyone by looking big and brawny. It takes more than just hitting the gym a few times a week.

With that said, if you’re committed to making it work, and putting in the hours, there’s no way you won’t make it. Just keep at it, and you’ll be a household name in no time.

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  1. […] On a different note, all hell broke loose unexpectedly in a different crisis originating in 2018, during which we escorted a client. And this is where the benefits of Israeli executive protection training truly kicked in. In a series of events, including an overturned truck blocking the path to the airport, the executive asked us to engage our emergency crew. We complied rapidly, managing to secure the official and his suitcase, accompanied by an armed guard. […]

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