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Shape up your job prospects


One industry that has managed to stay in shape throughout the recession is the health and fitness business. According to the 2010 FIA (Fitness Industry Association) state of the UK fitness report, the sector has continued to grow for the 10th consecutive year. That is welcome news for the government’s public health strategy, and for those with plans to train for a career in health and fitness.

The report, produced by leisure market analyst The Leisure Database Company, revealed that the number of new facilities being opened is still increasing. The total industry membership base also grew to 7.4 million in the 12 months to March 2010. This has created a demand for trained and qualified health and fitness professionals, including gym instructors and personal trainers.

Candidates can choose from a number of options, from full time college courses and apprenticeships, to distance learning and online programmes, leading to the qualifications needed for enrolment on the Register of Exercise Professionals (REPS). These are offered by leading providers such as Lifetime, Premier, YMCAfit and Fitness Industry Education (FIE).

There are also a number of fast-track options that lead to a REPS level 3 qualification. These can be done within weeks and, with a level 3 pass, candidates will be in a good position to find jobs within health clubs and fitness facilities.

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