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How to Become a Bouncer

With the new Roadhouse reboot, we thought it might be a great time to learn how to become a bouncer. We are pretty sure SkillsetHQ wasn’t the only one daydreaming about loud music and ass-kicking. Granted, we are more fans of the original Patrick Swayze version. Just like POINT BREAK, leave the classics alone!

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How To Become a Bouncer

 Many people may believe you only have to be a meathead and you could bounce at the trendy club downtown. Well, this isn’t exactly correct. Although being big is a valuable asset, several other factors go into getting the position and knowing what lines you can and can’t cross. 

The occupation of a bouncer is not as easy or as simple as one may expect. Especially with all those twenty-somethings waiting in line and anxiously waiting to pass the velvet rope. Additionally, a number of myths or misconceptions go along with the profession of a bouncer that are either partially true or entirely false, and a vast majority of these will be explored and exposed. So get your I.D. ready, get in line, and your crash course to becoming a bouncer is about to begin!

Are You a Good Fit?

Before you jump at the chance to become a bouncer at a local club, do you know if it’s the best fit for you? Sure, it looks easy; you get to be around (mostly) beautiful women nightly, and you can flex a muscle or two if it comes to that. However, if you look at the job in greater detail, it may have some drawbacks. First, you need to be a night person. Clubs open late and stay open until the early morning hours, so being a night owl is good; being an early riser is not. 

Second, do you enjoy your weekends? If so, kiss them goodbye because Friday night and Saturday nights are key times for a club to operate. Good luck getting on or both of those days off. Finally, if you like standing around your entire shift, that’s good. Because you’re on your feet for hours on end. These are just a few simple prerequisites for the job of bouncer. Below, we get into the nitty-gritty of this often misunderstood profession. 

Get in Good Physical Condition

Before you answer the call for bouncers, it’s wise to bulk up if you still need to. Hitting the gym and getting into excellent physical shape will help get your foot into the door. First impressions go a long way, so if you look the part, that’s most likely half your battle. 

Additionally, with proper planning, you can enroll in martial arts or self-defense classes before seeking a job. Krav Maga, Japanese Ju-jitsu, Judo, and karate can be helpful if you make it as a bouncer in various ways. Just be sure the art you choose is self-defense-oriented and not based mainly on competition, philosophy, or soft, non-defensive arts. 

Being both in tip-top shape AND currently taking classes directly related to the work you’re looking for offers the one-two punch to the hiring staff, and your application may move to the top of the pile.

. Bear in mind that becoming a bouncer (in some states) is the same as becoming a security guard. The process is similar, if not the same, and you’ll be certified to work in such establishments as a bar, billiard hall, sporting events, concerts, etc.
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Formal Training Required

Some states require training to become a (certified) bouncer, while others do not. Doing your homework is definitely in your best interest. Then, go through the proper channels to get your certification in order. This would include filling out an application, passing an exam, paying a fee, and earning your license. Remember that becoming a bouncer (in some states) is the same as becoming a security guard. 

The process is similar, if not the same, and you’ll be certified to work in such establishments as a bar. It’s also advantageous to be twenty-one or older when you apply. Many businesses that serve alcohol may require that age minimum since they (the bouncers) will be around alcohol constantly, and they will be free of any entanglements that you, being underage, may incur. 

Furthermore, any classes that deal with conflict resolution, alcohol and drug regulations and identification, and reading a person’s body language are all icing on the cake to beef up your resume (and be very useful if you get the job.) CPR certification, first-aid knowledge, and emergency response seminars are other areas that can help you land the position. 

The Background Check

In the same vane as doing your homework for certification, a criminal background check may be done before the business can proceed with your application. Although what dismisses you from the interview process varies from business to business, keeping your record clear or speaking logically for any red flags can help you not be instantly rejected.

Legal Accountability

Here’s the tricky part of being a bouncer. If hired, you do not have any special legal privileges over anyone else. However, it may appear to others as they wait in line to get in that bouncers can throw people around whenever and wherever they want to.

 This is not the case, so if you seek the thrill of being a hired tough guy, then you’re not right for the job. This also is in effect if the patron is drunk, yelling like a fool, or just an all-around A-hole. A bouncer’s first line of defense is to de-escalate the problem by talking with the troublemaker. A steady, calm voice and direct instruction can keep a situation from becoming physical; often, a talk can do the trick. 

If, however, talking is a no-go and the situation goes from bad to worse and verbal to physical, then the police can be called, and they can take it from there. Now, I know someone is thinking, “But I see bouncers getting into fights and tackling people to the ground.” So what’s the real deal? Well, the deal is like any other person out in the world. If a bouncer is physically attacked first, then self-defense can be applied, and the bouncer can fight back legally. 

See You in Court

Additionally, if the bouncer is a third party to someone hurting someone else in the club, the bouncer can intervene and use force if needed. Now, it also becomes legally cloudy who is responsible if the bouncer instigates an act of violence. While both parties can be taken to court, the actual guilty party will be at fault once the facts and evidence are presented. Simply put, if the bouncer acted on the orders instructed by the establishment’s management, the business could be sued. 

However, if it’s proven that the bouncer acted outside the policies of the company that they work for, then the bouncer themselves would be held accountable. 

Job Security

Club security and bouncers specifically have high turnover. As many people use the job as extra cash, they tend to drop when financial fortune returns. This opens the door to people looking to take over the role, so finding a job is relatively easy as other professions can be. Also, as they get older, many find a spouse, have children and change their lifestyle because of it. 

No Time for Fake IDs!

A bouncer’s life is not for everyone. But it may very well be for you, at least in the short term. If so, follow the steps, pump some iron, and before you know it, you’ll be checking I.D.s and controlling the hectic scene in front of the club with everyone in line wondering if you’ll unhook the velvet rope for them. 

There are plenty of paying jobs out there, of course some are stranger than others.
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Is the thought of becoming a bouncer not enticing anymore? Check these jobs out instead: Weird Jobs That Pay

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