Ensure your learners are ready for employment with our Fitness Services qualification | Pearson qualifications

Ensure your learners are ready for employment with our Fitness Services qualification

Mon Jan 14 13:22:53 UTC 2019

Find out about how our fitness services qualification has been endorsed, and how it will benefit your learners.

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CIMSPA and REPS qualification endorsement

We’re delighted to announce that the Pearson BTEC Level 3 National Diploma in Fitness Services (part of the BTEC Level 3 Nationals in Sport RQF suite) now meets the membership entry requirements for both the Register of Exercise Professionals (REPs) and the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA).

Our qualification maps to the most up to date industry professional and National Occupational Standards, as defined by employers in the sector as being required in order to progress into employment as level 2 fitness instructors and more.

See the letters of support from CIMSPA and REPS

CIMSPA Professional Standard Endorsed Qualification

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REPS Independently Endorsed

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Take a look at the updated specification

Both REPs and CIMSPA work closely with employers to design professional standards to meet the needs of the future sector workforce. Employers who are involved in standards setting include; David Lloyd Leisure, Nuffield Health and Virgin Active.

Please note that this change is subject to some requirements. Read on to find out more.

What are REPS and CIMSPA’s requirements?

1. Unit combinations and job roles

Both organisations work to slightly different professional standards. The following table summaries how each organisation recognises the qualification for different employment types, and what units the learner must take.

Please note that employers may require membership of one or both organisations for employment.

Qualification requirements


Prepared for employment as;



Prepared for employment as;

Successful completion of the qualification, all mandatory units and 3 optional units (which includes units 13 and 14)

Level 2 Gym/ Fitness Instructor, Level 2 Circuits Instructor

Level 2 Gym/Fitness Instructor

Successful completion of the qualification, all mandatory units and 3 optional units including Unit 15 Instructing Exercise to Music

Recognised Level 2 Exercise to Music Instructor

Recognised Group Exercise Instructor

Successful completion of the qualification, all mandatory units and 3 optional units including Unit 16 Instructing Water Based Exercise

Recognised Level 2 Aqua Instructor

Recognised Group Exercise Instructor

2. Assessment requirements

There are a few assessment rules that organisations have said centres must follow in order to achieve this access to employment.

A. Assessor and verifier requirements (in place since September 2017)

Read the requirements
(PDF | 348 KB)

B. Practical assessment requirements (detailed below)

CIMSPA also has some requirements around practical assessment. One of the key points employers wanted us to emphasise in the new professional standards are the practical assessment requirements. CIMSPA have stipulated all practical assessment must;

  • Be conducted in a real world environment. This where possible should be in the workplace ‘on the job’ at work, or as close to as possible to replicate a working environment. If the learner could complete the practical aspect whilst on work experience/placement that would be ideal.
  • The assessment should be conducted with real clients/participants and not with peers. A real client/participant is someone who is in the best case a member of the club/facility or equivalent for self-employed trainees.

And the real client/participant must not:

  • work at the same facility as the candidate
  • be related to the candidate, e.g. spouse, partner, parent, step parent, brother, sister
  • be enrolled on the same qualification as the trainee at the same time.

These rules apply to the following assessment criteria in the Fitness Services qualification:


Assessment criteria





P5, M4


P4, P5, M3


P4, P5, M3

Important information: Please note the requirements in 2B have been asked for by CIMSPA only, but all learner registrations must comply with these rules in order to be eligible for access to employment.


The normal Quality Assurance process for BTEC Nationals 2016 onwards will apply, by using subject specific Standards Verifiers.

Read the Guide to BTEC Quality Assurance

No - a learner must achieve a minimum of a pass of the overall qualification to access REPs and/ or CIMSPA membership.

Yes it is up to the learner. They can apply directly to CIMSPA and REPS.

We have agreed with CIMSPA and REPS that all learners currently registered on the programme (academic years 17/18 or 18/19) will be able to benefit from this. We do not want to disadvantage any learner already on-programme. Therefore both CIMSPA and REPS will accept learners in this situation into full membership.


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