Gym Instructor Course
National Certificate in Gym Instruction

Course Type:




3 Months


NSC, Focus Awards


This training programme will prepare you for a career in the sport and active leisure industry as a fitness instructor – teaching gym-based exercise.  Throughout this programme you will develop an understanding of anatomy, physiology, the principles of exercise, fitness and health, and relevant health, safety and welfare in the fitness environment.  You will develop the knowledge and skills needed to plan and instruct a gym-based exercise programme for healthy adults of all ages.  You will also learn how to effectively support clients who take part in exercise and physical activity.

Anatomy & Physiology for Exercise & Health
  • Understand the structure and functions of the skeletal system and joints.
  • Understand the structure and functions of the muscular system.
  • Understand the structure and functions of the cardio-respiratory system.
  • Understand energy systems and their relation to exercise.
Principles of Exercise, Fitness & Health
  • Understand the benefits of an active and healthy lifestyle.
  • Understand the effects of exercise on the body.
  • Know the components of fitness and principles of training.
  • Applying the principles of fitness to an exercise programme.
  • Contraindications and key safety guidelines for special populations.
  • Monitoring exercise intensity.
  • Understand the importance of healthy eating.
Planning Gym Based Exercise / Resistance (Weight) Training)
  • Client Health Screening.
  • Planning Safe & Effective Exercise Programmes.
  • Client Data Records.
Instructing Gym Based Exercise / Resistance (Weight) Training)
  • Professionalism in Fitness Instruction.
  • Preparing gym equipment for use.
  • Instructing gym-based exercise.
  • Supervising, supporting and motivating clients.
  • Machine weight and free weight training programmes.
  • Exercise progressions and variations.
Supporting Clients who Partake in Physical Activity
  • Building effective working relationships with clients.
  • Addressing barriers to exercise/physical activity that clients experience.
  • Supporting clients participating in exercise/physical activity.
  • Providing ongoing customer service.
Health, Safety and Welfare in the Fitness Environment
  • Emergency procedures in a fitness environment.
  • Health and safety procedures in a fitness environment.
  • Controlling risks in a fitness environment.
  • Safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.

Course Start Date: September 1st 2024 – 2 Courses are Available

Theory/online modules are released on September 1st 2024, followed by practical sessions starting October 1st, 2024.  Practical contact days are:

Weekday Course Option:
Tuesdays - 9:30am to 4:30pm.  Dates: October 1, 15 & 29, November 12 & 26.

Weekend Course Option:
Saturdays - 9:30am to 4:30pm.  Dates: October 5 & 19, November 2, 16 & 30.

Theory, research and assignments are completed outside of practical training days via recorded online lectures and video tutorials.  All practical training days occur at NSC’s Kildare College location.

Limited Places Available

The National Certificate in Gym Instruction runs twice a year (March & September) from NSC’s Kildare College location.  Weekday and weekend course options are available.  

Our next course start date is September 1st, 2024.  Student places are limited. 

Early registration is advisable.

Course Tuition Fee: From €795 

Course tuition fee includes access to our online classroom, course notes, online teaching materials, e-books and access to equipment and materials for college practical sessions.

International Learner Registration, Assessment and Certification Fee: €100 

€795 is our early bird option (€100 discount) which must be paid in full prior to the course start date.  The regular course fee of €895 can be paid over 3 instalments during the programme.  Course tuition fees and external registration/examination fees must be paid in full prior to final assessments and grading of assignments.
A refundable course deposit of €195 must be paid to reserve a student place on this programme.


Course Fee Option 1: Early Bird Tuition Fee = €795 (€100 discount).

Deposit = €195 (refundable up until August 1st, 2024).

Final Tuition Payment of €600 paid before your course start date of September 1st, 2024.

International Learner Registration and Assessment Fee of €100 due October 1st, 2024.


Course Fee Option 2: Standard Tuition Fee = €895.

Deposit = €195 (Refundable up until August 1st, 2024).

3 Payments of €233 due September 1st to November 1st, 2024.

International Learner Registration and Assessment Fee of €100 due October 1st, 2024.


The National Certificate in Gym Instruction is open to applicants who have a keen interest in working with the general public in gyms and health clubs across the active leisure industry.  This primary programme of education is suitable for individuals with or without prior qualifications. Course content is delivered to facilitate adult learners of mixed ability.  Course learners must be computer literate and have access to a computer with broadband availability.  Course notes, power-points, video tutorials, e-books and assignments are only available online.  Completed assignments are also required to be uploaded online.

  • National Certificate in Gym Instruction (NSC)
  • UKL2/IRL4 Certificate in Fitness Instruction – Gym Based Exercise (Focus Awards - RQF/OFQUAL Registered Awarding Body)

The Focus Awards qualification is comparable to Level 4 on the National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ) Ireland and has international recognition.  NSC/Focus Awards qualifications allow graduates to obtain professional indemnity insurance to practice in Ireland, the UK and internationally.  

The National Certificate in Gym Instruction consists of 6 modules, taught part-time through blended learning and completed over a 3 month period (September 2024 to November 2024).  This is a blended learning programme which involves online lectures, video tutorials and written assignments, coupled with practical in-person sessions.

KildareWeekday CourseStarting September


KildareWeekend CourseStarting September


DublinWeekday CourseStarting September



Meet Your Instructor

George Martin, BSc. PGDip. MSc. MTEd.

Founder, Academic Director & Lecturer

Call at 085 800 1221 or email [email protected].

George Martin oversees all academic qualifications offered through the National Sports College.  He also lectures in Anatomy & Physiology, Sport Science, Strength & Conditioning, Personal Training, Gym Instruction, Exercise to Music, Sports Massage and Business Management.  George has over 25 years experience in the sport/health fitness industry as an instructor, coach, tutor, therapist and manager.


  • BSc. (Hons) in Sport Science (QQI Level 8)
  • Post Graduate Diploma in Training & Education (QQI Level 9)
  • MSc. in Strength & Conditioning (QQI Level 9)
  • Master of Arts in Training & Education (QQI Level 9)
  • International Certificate in Exercise & Health Studies
  • National Qualification in Sport & Remedial Massage Therapy
  • Certified Tutor Coach (Coaching Ireland)
  • Train the Trainer Certified (QQI Level 6)
  • Certificate in Management Processes (QQI Level 6)
  • Certificate in Information Technology & Computer Studies
  • Registered Sport & Active Leisure Assessor
See what our students say!

Recently finished a course at NSC and was super impressed by how thorough it was. George and Allison were amazing and there to answer questions and give practical advice that really helped me out. They really know their stuff and are always ready to help!

Sarah D.
Previous Student

I had a fantastic experience at NSC. The course was top-notch, but what really stood out was the support I received outside the classroom. George and Allison were always there to help with any questions I had about notes and exams. Their willingness to provide extra assistance made a huge difference, helping me understand the material better and feel more prepared for exams.

Eamonn O'C.
Previous Student

My time at the National Sports College was great. The course quality was excellent. What I appreciated most was the support from George and Allison outside of class. They were always available to answer questions about the notes and exams. Their dedication made the learning experience smooth and stress-free. For anyone looking for a course with exceptional support, I highly recommend NSC. They truly care about their students' success.

Collin Byrne
Previous Student

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Dual Bundle

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