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Fitness Instructor

Note: Completion of a TAFE SA course does not guarantee an employment outcome. Formal requirements other than educational qualifications (eg licensing, professional registration), may apply to some occupations.

Job Prospects Openings 5 years to November 2019: < 5,000
Salary Range Median weekly earnings: < $920 to Source: Australian Government Department of Employment 2015
Brief There are in excess of 2000 registered fitness professionals (including fitness instructors and personal trainers) working in South Australia. Employment for fitness instructors is mainly in a casual capacity but can also be in a part-time capacity depending on the area of instruction (ie. Group Exercise Instruction, Gym Instruction or Aqua Instruction). This occupation appeals to many age groups.

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TAFE SA courses that may be relevant for: Fitness Instructor

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The Fitness Industry is a dynamic and evolving industry. The fitness industry contributes to the economy by providing benefits to consumers through increased health, which may decrease demand for other health related services and free up Government revenue for other purposes. Fitness instructors are at the entry level of a career within the Fitness industry. According to the recent Australian Fitness Industry Report 2012, trends within the industry show that aerobics, fitness or gym workouts are now the second most popular physical recreation activity after walking, amongst Australians. The fitness industry has more participants than swimming and cycling (the next biggest) combined and is continuing to grow. It also plays a supportive and preventative health role with sport specific programs, rehabilitation programs and mainstream fitness and health programs.

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Education Requirements

In order to work in the fitness industry you need to have minimum of Certificate III in Fitness.

TAFE SA offers courses relevant to this occupation including the Certificate III and IV in Fitness. TAFE SA also offers a Packaged Program in Fitness incorporating the Certificate III and IV and Diploma of Fitness.

Still Unsure! Then try a short course also offered through TAFE SA such as Exercise in Water Instructor or Group Exercise Instructor. Check the website for the full list of short courses.

Career Path

Students who undertake studies at Certificate III in Fitness as a Gym Instructor can enter a direct pathway to Certificate IV in Fitness – Personal Trainer and then onto Diploma of Fitness – Specialist Trainer. There may also be an opportunity for those who have completed the Diploma of Fitness to pathway into a related higher education University qualification (eg. Bachelor of Human Movement, Exercise Physiology or Bachelor of Health Sciences etc.)


Cultural and Recreational Services,  Health and Community Services


To be updated.

Nature of the Job

The fitness industry is a client service industry. People working in the fitness industry need to enjoy working with others. Fitness instructors are expected to be physically active themselves and have a reasonable level of personal fitness. They need to have a client centred focus throughout their work, be enthusiastic and understand how to motivate others through effective communication, and role modelling. There are not only opportunities for personal satisfaction, but also the reward of helping others through exercise and the social benefits of organised activities.

Typical Physical Working Environment

Fitness instructors may operate in a range of working environments including: fitness facilities, pools, community facilities, cruise ships, Health Spa/Resorts and outdoor environments.

Typical Occupational Example

Fitness instructors may work in one or more of the following areas – Gym Instruction, Group Exercise Instruction or Aqua Instruction. They may be involved in a range of programming and instructional activities including the following:
Gym Instructor – plans, leads and instructs basic exercise programs and activities (including circuit workouts) for development and improvement of aerobic, flexibility, endurance and strength conditioning . They may also perform fitness assessments for individuals.
Group Exercise Instructor – plans and conducts group exercise to music classes.
Aqua Instructor – Plan and instruct water based group exercise classes

Earning Potential

There is a wide range of earnings, varying between $25,000 and $45,000 per year. Some Fitness Instructors with good reputations can earn much more by working privately or starting their own business.

Further Information

For further information about all TAFE SA Courses, phone 1800 882 661 or enquire online