13 July, 2017

So you have thought about becoming personal trainer, or you are currently on the path to completing your qualifications at the moment. Have you ever thought, what am I studying, and why am I studying this?

The Certificate III and IV in Fitness that we teach are the nationally recognised qualifications in fitness. Across Australia, all personal trainers are required to have at least these qualifications. They have this standardised qualification to ensure that all personal trainers have learnt the same information and are, at the very least, of a minimum standard.

Of course, how you study, the quality of teaching, and support you receive are completely down to individual training providers (known as Registered Training Providers), however the syllabus and requirements of each course unit are the same.

So who chooses what goes into the courses?

service-skills-australiaService Skills Australia (www.serviceskills.com.au) is a non-profit independent organisation responsible for creating the training packages (syllabuses) for the sports, fitness, recreation, tourism, travel, hospitality, wholesale, retail and personal services industries. Funded by the Australian Government, Service Skills Australia has the huge task of ensuring each national qualification in these sectors is meeting the needs of employers and the industries as a whole. In consultation with industry experts, employers, training providers and professional registration bodies, Service Skills Australia ensure the information provided in the qualifications are up to date and relevant in the industry.

Why are there course codes, and what do they mean?

Every nationally recognised qualification has a course code so it is clear to perspective students what qualification they are looking at. The Department of Education and Training list all of these qualifications on their My Skills website (www.myskills.gov.au). In the fitness industry, the Certificate III in Fitness course code is currently SIS30315, and the Certificate IV in Fitness course code is SIS40215. Every time the national syllabus is updated, these course codes change slightly to help distinguish which ‘version’ of the course a student has completed.

What are the units within the Certificate III and IV in Fitness?

As well as having unique course codes, within each qualification there are also specific units that must be completed. In order to fully complete the Certificate III in Fitness you must complete 16 units, and to complete the Certificate IV in Fitness you must complete 20 units. Each unit covers different subjects within the industry to ensure you have a broad range of knowledge in all areas of fitness. Students are unable to choose which units they study, as they are all a required in order to complete the qualification. The units in our course can be shown below, and as you can see they also have their unique codes to identify them.


SIS30315 Certificate III in Fitness – (Gym Instructor)
SISFFIT001 Provide health screening and fitness orientation
SISFFIT002 Recognise and apply exercise considerations for specific populations
SISFFIT003 Instruct fitness programs
SISFFIT004 Incorporate anatomy and physiology principles into fitness programming
SISFFIT005 Provide healthy eating information
SISFFIT014 Instruct exercise to older clients
SISXCCS001 Provide quality service
SISXFAC001 Maintain equipment for activities
SISXIND001 Work effectively in sport, fitness and recreation environments
BSBRSK401 Identify risk and apply risk management processes
HLTAID003 Provide first aid
HLTWHS001 Participate in workplace health and safety
SISFFIT006 Conduct fitness appraisals
SISFFIT024 Instruct endurance programs
SISXCAI001 Provide equipment for activities
SISXFAC002 Maintain sport, fitness and recreation facilities


SIS40215 Certificate IV in Fitness – (Personal Training)
SISFFIT013 Instruct exercise to young people aged 13 to 17 years
SISFFIT015 Collaborate with medical and allied health professionals in a fitness context
SISFFIT016 Provide motivation to positively influence exercise behaviour
SISFFIT017 Instruct long-term exercise programs
SISFFIT018 Promote functional movement capacity
SISFFIT019 Incorporate exercise science principles into fitness programming
SISFFIT020 Instruct exercise programs for body composition goals
SISFFIT021 Instruct personal training programs
SISFFIT023 Instruct group personal training programs
SISFFIT025 Recognise the dangers of providing nutrition advice to clients
SISFFIT026 Support healthy eating through the Eat for Health Program
SISXRES001 Conduct sustainable work practices in open spaces
BSBSMB401 Establish legal and risk management requirements of small business
BSBSMB403 Market the small business
BSBSMB404 Undertake small business planning
BSBSLS408 Present, secure and support sales solutions
SISSSTC301A Instruct strength and conditioning techniques
SISSSTC402A Develop strength and conditioning programs
SISXCAI005 Conduct individualised long term training programs
SISFFIT012 Instruct movement programs to children aged 5 – 12 years


Are there any other personal training qualifications?

Within Australia, the Certificate III and IV in Fitness are the only nationally recognised qualifications that allow you to work as a gym instructor or personal trainer. You require them to work for both an employer or to run your own business. Most other qualifications, such as the short courses we include as part of our Industry Ready Package, are designed to build upon the knowledge of qualified personal trainers in specific areas of expertise. Although not a requirement, these qualifications help personal trainers become more qualified, knowledgeable and employable in the industry.


So what are you waiting for? If you are interested in becoming a personal trainer, enquire now for more information about studying your Certificate III and IV in Fitness with the Australian Fitness Academy. Furthermore, by studying with us you will stand out from the crowd with 8 additional certificates through our Professional Development Package.

Written by:

James Poynter

  • Bachelor of Science (Hons)
  • Qualified Personal Trainer, previously worked at Fitness First in the UK
  • Worked for largest RTO in the UK – The Training Room
  • James has years of experience from the fitness education industry both in Australia and the UK.

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