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What qualifications do I need to become a personal trainer?

Hadyn Luke posted this on Friday 4th of May 2012 Hadyn Luke 04/05/2012

Tags: Industry news

In todays fitness blog we are covering how to become a personal trainer.  If you’d like to qualify as a personal trainer, fitness instructor or aerobics instructor you will need to follow an accredited course such as those run by CMS Fitness Courses.

Skills Active Health & Fitness

Personal trainer courses are listed under the Health & Fitness sector of Skills Active, one of the divisions run by the Sector Skills Council. The purpose of the Council is to consult with employers and experts in the industry and draw up national occupational standards for fitness professionals, including personal trainers, which are revised and updated on a regular basis.

In the UK, any qualification that is recognised by its sector’s occupational standards comes under the QCF (Qualifications and Credit Framework) system. Qualifications for personal trainers are managed by awarding bodies; within the health and fitness sectors these include organisations such as Active IQ, CYQ, OCR and City & Guilds. As part of their portfolio, they provide access to training providers such as CMS Fitness Courses, who will deliver the courses.

External monitoring of personal trainer courses

The purpose of the awarding bodies is to act as an external monitor of the integrity of the training provider and their quality of delivery. They will make regular visits, monitor the delivery of the personal trainer courses and the management systems, check the qualifications of the tutors and that the training provider is compliant with legal requirements such as equal opportunities and appeal procedures.

Choosing a provider for your personal trainer course

Training companies that offer personal trainer courses, such as CMS Fitness Courses, use a variety of criteria to choose their preferred awarding bodies. These include the support given by the awarding body, the cost of registration fees and the resources and training material provided.

Whichever training provider you choose for your personal trainer course and whichever awarding body CMS Fitness Courses or another training provider may prefer, the resulting qualification will essentially be the same.

Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing

To work in the fitness industry, you need to hold a Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing in one of the following four categories: Gym-based; Exercise to Music; Water-based Exercise; Exercise and Physical Activity for Children. You will need to complete four mandatory units and choose 2 optional: 

Mandatory Units:

  • Anatomy and physiology for exercise
  • Know how to support clients who take part in exercise and physical activity
  • Health, safety and welfare in a fitness environment

  • Principles of exercise, fitness and health

Optional Units:

  • Planning gym or aqua or ETM or children-based exercise

  • Instructing gym or aqua or ETM or children-based exercise

The Registry of Exercise Professionals

Once you have completed your Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing, you can be placed on the Skills Active Registry of Exercise Professionals (REPs). To remain on the register, you must maintain your Continuing Professional Development (CPD) by attaining 24 points over each two-year period, with a minimum of four points in any one year. This can be achieved by taking part in workshops, seminars and conventions, reading articles, completing and submitting worksheets and attending courses such as those run by CMS Fitness Courses.

With a Level 2 core course under your belt, you can choose to take on a range of Level 2 CPD, for example Studio Cycling to teach group cycling. Over time you can progress to the Level 3 core course, which opens up additional CPD, allowing you to specialise in, for example, sports conditioning or exercise referral, which can then lead on to further qualifications at Level 4.

We hope you have found todays fitness blog helpful and we welcome your comments and discussion.  Visit our CMS Fitness Courses to view our range of internationally accredited and REPs recognised fitness courses.

CMS Fitness Courses

CMS Fitness Courses deliver a range of Fitness and Personal Training Courses in the West Yorkshire region. Offering high levels of support and flexibility to all our students, our values ensure we are market leaders in the delivery of Fitness and Personal Training Courses to the industry.

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