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Fitness Instructor

VOC Course Subject Prerequisites Traineeship Year 10 Preferred

Also known as Exercise Professional, Aerobics Instructor, Gym Instructor and Aqua Instructor.

Fitness instructors are involved in the assessment, teaching, training and supervision of a variety of people in health and fitness clubs, gymnasiums, sports centres and community recreation organisations.

Fitness instructors may specialise in fields such as aerobics, aqua-fitness, personal training, exercise for specific groups (such as older people), resistance training and swimming.

Fitness instructors may be employed on a casual basis and work at a number of different locations, including fitness centres, clinical settings, private practice and in the workplace.

Shiftwork is often involved, including early mornings and late nights.


    Fitness instructors may perform the following tasks:

  • assess the needs and capabilities of individuals through weighing, measuring and conducting fitness tests to check blood pressure, heart rate and lung capacity
  • provide training and assistance to individuals and groups by preparing a routine of exercises to music
  • provide advice to individuals on the correct method of exercising with weightlifting equipment, exercise bikes, treadmills and other training and exercise machines
  • devise personal exercise programmes for individuals according to age and level of fitness
  • provide instruction in a variety of fitness activities
  • provide general non-medical nutrition advice
  • assist with the cleaning and general maintenance of the centre and ensure equipment is maintained and correctly set up


  • good level of physical fitness
  • enthusiastic, outgoing personality
  • background in fitness activities may be an advantage
  • good communication skills
Good Outlook
Good Outlook for this career!

Interest Area

Outdoor Influencing/Personal Contact Helping/Community Service


Group Exercise Instructor - choreographs and delivers group classes to people who may vary in age and fitness levels.

Personal Trainer - provides individual assessments, develops tailored fitness programmes and offers exercise instruction, demonstration and support for individuals and small groups.

Specialist Exercise Trainer - delivers advanced exercise programming and sports conditioning to a wide variety of clients. They may work in collaboration with allied health professionals like medical practitioners, dietitians, physiotherapists and exercise physiologists. They may also be involved in the delivery of health promotion programmes and project management.


VOC Course Subject Prerequisites Traineeship Year 10 Preferred

To become a fitness instructor you usually have to complete a VOC qualification in fitness. As subjects and prerequisites can vary between institutions, you should contact your chosen institution for further information. You may be able to study through distance education.

You can also become a fitness instructor through a traineeship in Fitness.

Entry requirements may vary, but employers generally require Year 10.

Additional Information

    Registration by Fitness Australia or Physical Activity Australia is generally accepted as the minimum requirement to work as an instructor in the health and fitness industry. Registration requires a current Provide First Aid Certificate and a Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation Certificate.

    The registration category depends on your qualification and level of experience. Those who have obtained a Certificate III in Fitness can register as an Exercise Instructor and are eligible to register as a Gym Instructor, Children's Instructor, Older Adults Instructor, Aqua Instructor or Yoga Teacher. Those who have obtained a Certificate IV in Fitness can register as an Exercise Trainer and are eligible to become a Personal Trainer, Children's Trainer, Older Adults Trainer or Aqua Trainer. Those who have obtained a diploma can register as a Specialised Trainer.

    Fitness Australia and Physical Activity Australia are responsible for all aspects of assessing and registering fitness instructors in Australia. Registration is valid nation-wide.


Fitness instructors can expect to find employment instructing individuals or groups in traditional settings, such as fitness centres or studios. However, more recently, a large number of roles in an expanded range of settings have emerged. These include assessment, consulting, health promotion and management roles across settings such as community, sport, workplace, clinical, outdoor and mobile services.

A high proportion of fitness instructors are employed on a part-time or casual basis, although an increasing number of full-time positions are becoming available within the industry.

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More Information - External Links

Job Outlook for Fitness Instructor Australian Fitness Network Fitness Australia Physical Activity Australia Sportspeople

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