Level 3 Exercise for Older Adults

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  • Discover the skills to meet the fitness needs of older adults
  • Fantastic CPD opportunity for personal trainers, yoga teachers and Pilates instructors
  • Delivered through blended learning providing ultimate flexibility


In 2012, life expectancy in the UK reached 81 years of age. As things stand, the NHS predicts this will rise to the late 80s by 2030. Similarly, there are currently 21 million people aged 50 and over currently living in the UK, a figure that’s increased by almost 20% between 1985-2010. These figures show that people are not only living longer, but staying active and looking after themselves. With this in mind, there’s now an increasing demand for exercise professionals to help meet the needs of this special population.

Our Level 3 Exercise for Older Adults qualification is accredited by YMCA Awards (formerly CYQ), and it will give you the necessary skills to make a real difference to your clients’ lives. You’ll gain a keen understanding of the ageing process, and how exercise can not only be used to improve quality of life, but even help prevent ageing. Most importantly, you’ll be able to utilise this knowledge in a safe and responsible manner. The course is delivered entirely through distance learning, providing you with the flexibility to learn the course materials on your time, and seek out support from our experienced tutors whenever you need it.

This qualification broadens the scope of clients you can work with. Subsequently, it’s ideal for most exercise professionals, although it will be of particular value to Personal Trainers, Yoga teachers and Pilates instructors. It also provides a fantastic opportunity for continuing professional development (CPD).

If you’re looking to further enhance your career professional development, you should consider the Level 3 Special Populations Diploma, which combines Level 3 Exercise Referral, Level 3 Pre and Postnatal Exercise, and this qualification.

course content

Our Level 3 Exercise for Older Adults Course will ensure you’re fully equipped to safely and effectively work with clients in their senior years. The following is by far an exhaustive list, but it does cover some of the important elements of this course:

The Ageing Population

  • Chief Medical Officer recommendations for 65+ years physical activity
  • Implications of inactivity

Anatomical and physiological ageing

  • Understanding changes to the muscular, skeletal, nervous and cardiorespiratory systems
  • Analysing the effects changes in these systems have on the body

Benefits of exercise for older adults

  • How exercise can produce both short term and long term benefits
  • Specific breakdown of key physical, muscular, skeletal, metabolic and cognitive benefits

Behaviour change and motivation

  • How to break down barriers of participation
  • How to promote behavioural change in clients

The course also covers:

  • How to plan an exercise session for older clients
  • Safely adapting various exercises for older clients
  • Functional exercise patterns for older clients
  • Functional assessments for seniors


To ensure you have the best possible chance of achieving your qualification, we continually assess you throughout the course. This happens in a variety of ways:

  • Worksheet – Planning and adapting exercise for older adults
  • Theory exam – 30 multiple choice questions covering topics like: how the body ages, benefits of exercise, and anatomy and physiology
  • Case study – Planning an exercise programme for a client over 70


In order to enrol on this course, students must already possess a Level 2 Fitness Instruction qualification. This can either be as a Gym Instructor, Exercise to Music, Circuit Training, or Instructing Exercise for Children. Alternatively, you’ll be eligible if you’ve gained the Level 3 Diploma in Mat Pilates, or the Level 3 Yoga Teacher Training qualification. Students who currently hold a Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Walking, or any other related qualification within the physical activity adviser category on REPs, can also enrol.

Aside from the qualification prerequisites, students should have a positive attitude towards working with older clients and be able to adopt a caring and patient approach.


REPs 20

This qualification is worth 20 CPD points with the Register of Exercise Professionals (REPs). It is not however possible to join the Register with this qualification.

Payment Options

Pay In Full & Save 5%


6 Month Payment Plan

1 x £35 and 5 x £32

Total Payable £320 / Minimum Deposit £125

what the experts say

  • James Crossley (Hunter from Gladiators) "HFE is the ultimate fitness training provider, without a doubt their personal trainer courses are the best in the industry."
  • Antonia Johnston (Co-Founder of YogaFit Retreats) "I did my ETM and yoga teacher training with HFE and thoroughly enjoyed both... I highly recommend them."
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  • Laura Massaro British squash player and HFE yoga student
    Laura Massaro (World No. 1 Squash Player - 2016) "The course has really helped me to better understand yoga so that I can improve my performance and remain World No. 1"

student reviews

out of 5 from 457 reviews
  • Rating: 4 out of 5

    I just enrolled with HFE

    I just enrolled with HFE by recommendation of a friend to do the ETM course. All went very quickly and very professionally. Ruth Baxendale, the lady who enrolled me was very nice and I'm looking forward to do my course with HFE.

  • Rating: 4 out of 5

    Level 3 PT

    Really enjoyed learning with HFE. I feel I gained knowledge in a relaxed and friendly manner. Tutors were all friendly and help was there when needed. the online support was always there when I needed and the three weekend of examinations was ideal

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