An exercise specialist professional working with a client
An exercise specialist professional working with a client

Leading the Way

Be the difference, serve the medical community and tackle chronic health conditions

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Exercise Specialist Courses and Qualifications

Working with the medical community, tackling obesity, diabetes and low back pain, you'll be able to master your trade and become a Level 4 exercise specialist.

The Professional Standard

Our range of specialist exercise courses set the platinum standard for quality content.

Worldwide Recognition

Our specialist courses and qualifications are backed by leading awarding bodies to ensure that your achievements are recognised around the world.

Expert Delivery

These courses are developed and presented by leading doctors, nutritionists, physios and exercise professionals to ensure you get nothing but the best.

A 5-Star Support Team

Our 5-Star support team (check Trustpilot if you don’t believe us) are always on hand to provide the expert guidance and support you need to succeed.

Our Reputation. Your Words.

Over the years, we've delivered over 30,000 active leisure sector qualifications to students around the UK. In their words, here's what some of them have had to say about their HFE training experience.


I really liked the depth of knowledge of the teachers, and the relaxed and professional way that I was treated, I would certainly recommend HFE to any serious fitness professional.


Excellent course

Excellent course, fast and helpful turnaround of work and a fabulous manual which will be really useful in my future work. Thank you particularly to Stacey.

Pat Goddard

Level 4 Lower Back Pain

Excellent course, would definitely recommend. Next time I want to do a course, I'd choose HFE


Excellent service

The best online training provider I’ve come across to date. Did my Level 3 Exercise Referral and Level 4 Exercise for Obese & Diabetic Clients with HFE and the service...
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was excellent.


My tutor and all the HFE support group…

My tutor and all the HFE support group have been extremely helpful, approachable and friendly throughout the completion of my course work. It was just nice to know that they...
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were always there at the end of a phone call. Much love to all of you, you're all an inspiration. The only thing i'm left with, is an addiction to do more courses, many thanks and speak to you guys soon. X

Halil Orhan

This is the second time I have studied

This is the second time I have studied with HFE and I would do so again without hesitation. My support tutor Martyn was helpful, patient and supportive with clear concise...
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knowledge and advice, I felt completely at ease and comfortable to be able to ask anything.

Joanna Fergusson

HFE Master Pilates Course Review

HFE provide excellent training material and the training days are packed with lessons, practicals and time for asking questions. The tutors are incredibly knowledgeable and always on hand for support...
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to answer any questions. The covid pandemic has been a major factor and I cannot fault HFE with their support both academically and administratively to rebook courses, take online exams and extend end dates if needed. I have 2 more courses left to complete and am thoroughly enjoying them. Would definitely recommend HFE.

Jonathon Henwood

Hi,I would just like to say that I am…really happy

appreciative to my tutor Sophie.She has checked in with me lots and always glad to help and really helpful through my online studying.A lovely lady and thankful for her support...
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as a great tutor.Always free to speak whenever.Thanks Sophie.

Leanne Doyle

Interesting challenge

The support from HFE during this difficult year has been great. The tests were easy to access and had some challenging elements that could not be taken directly from the...
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text books. This enabled some application of the baseline knowledge and helped me learn the content better.

Luke Tudor

Having just completed my 4th Course

Having just completed my 4th Course with HFE I can say what a pleasure it has been throughout. I am now an exercise referral instructor and exercise specialist in diabetes/obesity.

Gareth Davies

Today marks the day when I became more!!!

I started my level3 teaching mat pilates course almost a year ago. Had some delays cause of lockdown, being stuck overseas, etc., and today officially completed my course. For me...
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2020 will be a year to remember for hard work and success, not a waste year cause of covid. I couldn't recommend enough starting something new for yourself! I loved the course and the people at HFE. Janine was so helpful as my online tutor, Amber answered all my questions willingly, my workshop tutor Tracey was FANTASTIC!!! Learned a lot from Anne in my final weekend too. My classmates were amazing. I am going to do pre post natal course too. I loved everything about the course. Couldn't recommend enough.

Merve Güldoğan Clamp

First class!

I cannot recommend HFE highly enough. From the moment I registered I've received comprehensive and thorough support from my Learning Support Tutor, Dani...

Mrs J Smith

Rated 4.9/5 based on 778 reviews. Showing our 4 & 5 star reviews.

Exercise Specialist Career Packages

Your direct route to Level 4 success. Expertly-delivered courses, cutting-edge content, interest-free payment plans and hands-on training at a nationwide venue.

woman with physio

Low Back

£875.00 level-4

Combine Level 3 exercise referral with Level 4 low back pain to discover how to help your clients to better manage and overcome low back pain with scientifically proven strategies and interventions.

Courses Included:

  • Level 3 Diploma in Exercise Referral
  • Level 4 Exercise for Low Back Pain Certificate

Extras and Exclusives:

  • CV Connect
  • Discounted CIMSPA membership
  • 12 months of career guidance

Key Benefits:

  • 10-12 weeks to qualify
  • Become a low back pain specialist
  • Study part-time around your work
  • Save £175.00 on TRX course alone

Interest-free payment plan - £104 per month
5% discount for prompt payment - save £43.75

Group of overweight people exercising

Obesity &

£845.00 level-4

Complete level 3 exercise referral with level 4 obesity and diabetes to allow you to work effectively with overweight and obese clients, helping them to tackle their weight and improve their health and wellbeing.

Courses Included:

  • Level 3 Diploma in Exercise Referral
  • Level 4 Obesity and Diabetes Certificate

Extras and Exclusives:

  • CV Connect
  • Discounted CIMSPA membership
  • 12 months of career guidance

Key Benefits:

  • Qualify in 10-14 weeks
  • Become an obesity and diabetes specialist
  • Study part-time around your work
  • Save £175.00 on TRX course alone

Interest-free payment plan - £99 per month
5% discount for prompt payment - save £42.25

One Career. Unlimited Possibilities.

Join an exclusive group of exercise professionals that have achieved the highest of standards.

David Lloyd clubs logo Virgin Active gym logo Nuffield Health gym logo NHS logo Bannatyne gyms logo Places Leisure logo

Frequently Asked Questions - Exercise Specialist

It's only natural that you'll have questions about our level 4 courses and how these are delivered and supported? We've answered some of the most frequently asked questions below, although if there is anything else that you'd like to know, feel free to reach out to our Careers Team on the number below.

  • Do I need any prior qualifications to enrol?

    In order to enrol on a specialist Level 4 course, you must already hold, or be working towards a Level 3 Diploma in Exercise Referral (or equivalent). Don’t worry however if you haven’t yet booked your place on this course because we have a variety of packages below that combine and discount the Level 4 and exercise referral qualifications when they are booked together.

  • What can I expect to learn on my Level 4 course?

    This largely depends on the specific pathway you select. Generally, speaking, you’ll gain a deep understand of your chosen medical condition and how to effectively programme exercise and physical activity for individuals with these conditions.

    Our level 4 programmes are all presented by leading doctors in their respective fields, meaning that you get the most accurate and reliable information about the content and pathway you are studying.

    You’ll also learn about the medications used to control these conditions, their side effects and how to assess and monitor patients’ progress throughout their exercise journey. These qualifications really are packed with lots of advanced knowledge and skills to enable you to meet the specific needs of their target population.

  • How will I be supported on my Level 4 course?

    As a HFE student you’ll be supported continuously throughout the course. During the home-study phase of the programme, you’ll have a dedicated Learner Support Tutor who will guide you through your course. The practical element of the course is delivered by a team of highly qualified and experienced fitness industry and medical professionals.

    In addition to our team, these courses are also extremely well resourced. You’ll receive training manuals, awarding winning online learning materials, mock exams, interactive worksheets, video lectures and much more. Our support and resources really are second to none.

  • What career opportunities are available once I qualify?

    As a Level 4 Exercise Specialist a number of employment and career opportunities are open up. A popular career path is to work in a formal exercise referral scheme, providing specialist exercise instruction to clients referred by their GP.

    Other opportunities also include working privately with patients suffering from these specific conditions, working with weight management groups, physiotherapists, chiropractors and podiatrists to provide specialist exercise advice. It’s perhaps important to stress here that even when you’ve completed these qualifications, you’ll still be required to work alongside clinicians and other members of the medical community.

  • Are your Level 4 courses accredited?

    Our Level 4 courses are certificated by Active IQ and are fully recognised by all fitness industry employers. They are also recognised by the industry’s professional body, the Chartered Institute for the Management of Sport and Physical Activity (CIMSPA).

    We have also had our level 4 programmes endorsed by the American College of Sports Medicine, to provide our graduates with an extra accreditation and recognition of their achievements.

  • How difficult are these courses?

    These qualifications are designed for exercise professionals (not doctors) so you don’t have to worry about failure. All of the content that you need to know is provided and our team of expert tutors will explain exactly what you need to do – all you need to do is work hard and follow the programme.

    The Level 4 Exercise Specialist courses do not have knowledge-based assessments and so you don’t have to worry about passing any tricky exams. What you will, however, need to do is develop a sound understanding of the relevant medical conditions and your ability to assess, design and instruct exercise to patients with these conditions effectively.

Undeniable Quality. Unbelievable Value.

All of our qualifications are fully loaded with high-quality content that is produced by subject specialists and our exercise specialist qualifications are no exception! What's more, we also supply a host of added value products that have been specifically created to accelerate your success.

TRX Suspension Training

TRX Suspension Training Course - Digital Version Included with Packages

Learn from anywhere! This self-paced Official TRX Qualification combines the 15+ years of educating on the TRX Suspension Trainer and distills the content into highly engaging, useful, effective delivery to ensure each and everyone of our digital course graduates leaves with the skills required to successfully coach ANY client.

Following completion of this course, you are qualified TRX Course Graduate and on your journey to becoming TRX Certified through TRX CORE.

  • Official TRX qualification
  • Delivered by world-class trainers
  • Learn at own pace
  • Fully inclusive with package purchases
  • Discounted TRX suspension trainers
  • Highly engaging education material
PT teaching ropes

Get Your CV Connected and Secuer Real Employment Opportunities Within the Fitness Industry

CV Connect is our award-winning employment solution that connects enthusiastic graduates of our fitness education programmes with employers that are actively looking for skilled and qualified talent.

There are too many training providers advertising their training products with guaranteed interviews. These interviews are almost exclusively for self-employed positions where you’ll need to actually pay the club a rent to work their. These practices are misleading and unethical, which is why we created CV Connect.

When your studies are over and you’ve achieved your qualification, we’ll unlock CV Connect so you can start your employment search. All you need to do is get your CV in good shape, upload it to the platform, then select the employers in your area that you want to work with.

  • Trusted by employers
  • UK-wide opportunities
  • Find opportunities near you
  • Easy to use technology
  • Reach all major operators
  • Exclusive to HFE

Don't Just Take Our Word For It

Over the years, we've trained tens of thousands of exercise professionals across a variety of disciplines, including personal training, yoga, Pilates and other forms of group exercise and specialist exercise programmes. We've met some fantastic students who have achieved wonderful things...but here are a few faces you might just recognise.
778 reviews |
out of 5
All Reviews
James Crossley, also known as Hunter from Gladiators, endorses HFE's fitness courses

"HFE is the ultimate fitness training provider, without a doubt their personal training courses are the best in the industry."

James Crossley

(Hunter from Gladiators)
Laura Massaro is a World 1 squash player who studied yoga with HFE

"The course has really helped me to better understand yoga so that I can improve my performance and remain World No. 1."

Laura Massaro

(World No. 1 Squash Player - 2016)
Team GB Olympic pole vaulter Holly Bradshaw is an HFE personal training student

"HFE have produced some of the best materials I have seen in education."

Holly Bradshaw

(Team GB Olympic Bronze Medalist Pole Vaulter, 2020 Olympic Games)

"HFE were understanding and the course is really flexible. I knew this would be the perfect thing for me."

Louise Fiddes

(Team GB World Champion Paralympic Swimmer)

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