What does a fitness instructor do?

Fitness instructors are responsible for promoting active and healthy lifestyles, equipping individuals with the skills needed to improve their level of fitness. Depending on their client’s individual goals, fitness instructors will recommend a tailored diet and exercise plan that will help them achieve the level of fitness they’re aiming for in a safe way. Fitness instructors lead group or individual exercise sessions, provide advice for healthy eating, recommend techniques and equipment, and monitor the progress and health status of their clients.


  • Assessing client fitness levels
  • Conducting group training sessions
  • Demonstrating correct usage of gym equipment
  • Providing targeted fitness plans
  • Suggesting healthy eating habits

What skills do I need to be a fitness instructor?

Fitness instructors require a personable demeanour, coupled with a drive to help people. Fitness instructors are constantly working face-to-face with clients, so the ability to communicate clearly, provide instructions and listen are important. A fitness instructor should also enjoy helping people achieve their goals and provide motivation and encouragement. As a fitness instructor, your own health and fitness is your best advertisement, so its important that you lead a healthy lifestyle in order to lead by example.

  • Communicate clearly with clients
  • Goal-oriented and motivated
  • Physically fit and active
  • Positive and energetic attitude
  • Enjoys working with people


In the booming fitness industry, there are a huge number of potential career options to explore. You can choose a specialisation that appeals to your interests, schedule and desired career trajectory. 

Personal trainer

Personal trainers can work across an array of environments, conducting training, assessments and information session targeted specifically to individual clients or small focused groups. Personal trainers advise on a number of healthy lifestyle factors from eating, use of gym equipment, proper technique and strength training. This role is aimed at targeting the personal needs and requirements of the client.

Aqua fitness instructor

Aqua fitness instructors work in aquatic centres, holding lessons in the water to provide a gentle support for the body. Aqua fitness instructors are able to use the benefits of water to assist with exercise, as it decreases strain on joints and improves balance. Instructors generally tend to conduct sessions for small groups, often working with the physically impaired and frail.

Group exercise instructor

Group exercise instructors conduct targeted fitness classes in gyms and sports centres. These instructors have a particular gift for working with groups of people who may vary in age or physical capabilities. Instructors might choose to focus their talents on a particular type of exercise, such as cardio, stretching or boxing, or vary their working routine with a whole range of classes.

Study pathways for fitness instructors

Training is essential to ensure you’re providing accurate and helpful information to your clients. As the fitness industry grows, having industry-recognised credentials will help set you apart from your competition.

Getting Started

Take the first steps in your career as a fitness instructor

Skill Building

Work towards your career goals with targeted courses that emphasise your strengths

Professional Development

Focus on your goals and choose the right course to help you achieve

Industry Recognition

Registering with Fitness Australia or Physical Activity Australia is highly recommended on completion of your qualification.

Getting a job after graduation

Put your training to good use and get the best professional head start in your fitness career. Emphasise your personal strengths and achievements in your resume and target your cover letter to the job description listed.

Job Prospects and Salaries

The fitness industry is currently booming. There is expected to be very strong growth in employment opportunities over the next five years.