Exercise and Fitness (England)

Framework status: Current (latest) issue

Framework details

Framework ID: FR03824
Issue number: 10
Issued: 17 May 2016

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Exercise and Fitness (England)
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Issued by

Contact name: Caroline Larissey
Telephone number: 033 0004 0005 / 01302774911
Please download the framework for email contact information.


Defining Apprenticeships

An Apprenticeship is a job with an accompanying skills development programme designed by employers in the sector. It allows the apprentice to gain technical knowledge and real practical experience, along with functional and personal skills, required for their immediate job and future career. These are acquired through a mix of learning in the workplace, formal off the job training and the opportunity to practice and embed new skills in a real work context. This broader mix differentiates the Apprenticeship experience from training delivered to meet narrowly focused job needs.

All apprentices commencing their Apprenticeship must have an Apprenticeship Agreement between the employer and the apprentice. This can be used to reinforce the understanding of the requirements of the Apprenticeship.

On completion of the Apprenticeship the apprentice must be able to undertake the full range of duties, in the range of circumstances appropriate to the job, confidently and competently to the standard set by the industry.

The Health and Fitness Industry

The health and fitness industry is a large and important component of part of the active leisure, learning and well-being sector. It is made up of both privately run clubs such as David Lloyd, Fitness First and Cannons which constitutes 54.45% of the sector and publicly run gyms through various leisure facilities run by local authorities or leisure trusts; this makes up just over 45.4% of the industry .

The health and fitness industry workforce is predominantly female (63%), and mainly from a white background (92.5%) with a low proportion of Asian, Asian British, Chinese, Black, Black British and other backgrounds.

There is an estimated 51,900 full and part time staff directly employed in the fitness industry working in over 5,500 private and publicly run gyms and clubs. These members of staff are a crucial part of the front line service to over 7 million members of these clubs ensuring that customers achieve their health and fitness goals. The industry continues to grow and over the last 3 years has had a like-for-like membership growth of 2.9%

The Employer Training Survey shows that the highest qualification held by almost a third (31%) of employees currently working within the health and fitness sector is level 1 and a further quarter hold a level 2 qualification as their highest.

Therefore, there is a clear need to up-skill existing employees working within health and fitness for job roles which require skills and knowledge at level 2 and 3 such as fitness instructor and personal trainer, and provide clearly defined routes for entrants into the sector. Health and fitness employers have worked hard to establish an industry governed register which clearly defines entry point and progression routes which are recognised and understood by employers, employees and prospective entrants into the sector. The Register of Exercise Professionals (REPS) has been established by employers and allows instructors, coaches, trainers and teachers to know they are operating at the highest standards of professionalism. Registration is achieved and maintained through the gaining of qualifications and training which are endorsed by industry experts and nationally recognised. Qualifications which allow entry onto the register include both VRQs and NVQs. All the fitness related qualifications within this apprenticeship framework allow entry onto the register giving the Apprentice a solid and rounded understanding of the industry as well as the opportunity to gain employment and further skills.

In parallel to industry targets, the government has set a target of getting at least 70% of the population participating in sport and physical activity. This apprenticeship programme will provide the skilled staff to help the nation achieve a healthier, better life. SkillsActive are also developing excellent links with the National Health Service through the GP referral qualifications we have in place, which will contribute to achieving these targets.

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Exercise and Fitness (England)
(PDF document 2.78 MB)