VTCT Level 2 Certificate in Instructing Gym-based Exercise

Qualification Information

Sector: Sports, Active Health and Fitness Category: Fitness Instruction and Group Exercise
VTCT Product Code: SP2C7 GLH: 165 Age Restriction: 16
Qualification Number: 603/3668/7 Units: 4 Registration End Date: 31st Jul 2022
Level: 2

Additional Information

Documentation for this qualification last amended 1 September 2020

Statement of purpose

Who is this qualification for?

The VTCT Level 2 Certificate in Instructing Gym-based Exercise is a VRQ aimed at learners aged 16+ who are either in a full-time level 2 education programme, a part time programme at a college or with a private training provider, and wish to pursue a career as an employed fitness instructor of gym-based exercise. The qualification is based on the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA) professional standards for instructing gym based exercise.

What are professional standards?

A professional standard is a framework which defines the knowledge, skills and behaviours required to perform certain tasks relating to a job role. These standards will gradually be embedded into qualifications by Awarding Organisations to replace the current qualifications that are underpinned by National Occupational Standards (NOS). Within the sport sector these standards are employer led and facilitated by CIMSPA. The CIMSPA professional standards outlines the knowledge and skills required to underpin the occupations and job roles within the sport and physical activity sector.

What does this qualification cover?

The qualification includes all the required elements to work effectively as a gym instructor. Learners must achieve all mandatory units which include:

  • Anatomy and physiology for exercise and fitness professionals
  • Professional practice for exercise and fitness professionals
  • Exercise, fitness and lifestyle consultation and management
  • Planning and instructing gym-based exercise programmes

  • Throughout this qualification, learners will develop their knowledge and understanding of relevant anatomy and physiology. They will also develop the knowledge, understanding and skills to pre-screen clients and check their readiness to exercise, health and safety and induct individuals and small groups to gym equipment. They will also plan and instruct gym-based exercise programmes. In parallel, learners will develop their communication and customer service skills, their awareness of environmental sustainability and their commercial skills, all of which are valued highly by employers. Problem solving, team working skills and research skills will also be developed.

    What could this qualification lead to?

    This qualification is fully endorsed by the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA). Learners who achieve this qualification are eligible to become a fitness instructor and register to become a member of the chartered institute for the management of sport and physical activity (CIMSPA). As a fitness instructor, learners could progress directly into employment in a variety of contexts, which include:

  • Commercial gyms
  • Public leisure centres
  • Private health and fitness clubs
  • Armed forces
  • HM prison service
  • Cruise liners

  • Whilst the primary purpose of this qualification is to prepare learners for employment, learners may choose to develop their knowledge and skills further by completing additional qualifications at level 3 in the following areas:

  • Personal training
  • Exercise referral
  • Exercise to music
  • Physical activity programmes for antenatal and postnatal clients
  • Physical activity programmes for older adults
  • Mat-based Pilates

  • Qualification Structure

    Mandatory - from this group you'll need to cover a minimum of 4 components and earn a minimum of credits.

    Unit Code Unit Ref Unit Title Level Credits GLH
    USP182 A/617/2590 Anatomy and physiology for exercise and fitness professionals 2 40
    USP183 F/617/2591 Professional practice for exercise and fitness professionals 2 28
    USP184 J/617/2592 Exercise, fitness and lifestyle consultation and management 3 50
    USP185 L/617/2593 Planning and instructing gym-based exercise programmes 2 47

    *For full details of the Rules of Combination for this qualification please see the Qualification Specification/Record of Assessment book.


    *To find specifications for individual units, click on the "Structure" tab of your chosen qualification, select the unit code in the left hand column and on the new page click on the "Download unit book" tab under the unit title.

    Centres approved to run this qualification

    VTCT accredits centres to offer our qualifications, but cannot advise which centres are running particular courses at any time. Please contact the centre directly to find out if they currently offering your chosen qualification.

    NB: The location displayed for each centre is based upon the centre's main address. The location displayed is not necessarily the only location that the centre can deliver VTCT qualifications from. For further information on a centre's delivery capabilities please select the centre's website address.

    Centre Name Telephone Website Location
    Holistic Beauty Academy 07876 680133 Visit website Berkshire - Reading
    Warrington & Vale Royal College 01925 494494 Visit website Cheshire - Warrington
    Lakes College West Cumbria 01946 839300 Visit website Cumbria
    Health Hub Fitness Academy 07852943530 Visit website Derbyshire - Derby
    Blackpool and the Fylde College - Bispham Campus 01253 504625 Visit website Lancashire - Blackpool
    a-training 01476 849342 Visit website Lincolnshire
    TherapyFit Training Academy 0330 122 7517 Visit website West Midlands