The majority of services offered by the fitness sector are provided through gyms, fitness facilities and sole operators/personal training studios.  Here we provide the latest information through links and available resources.  We will continue to value add to this section of our website with business and industry professional development information.



[row class=”row-fluid”] [col class=”span6″]

Fitstuff Nate

[/col] [col class=”span6″]

Fitstuff TRX edited w logo

[/col] [/row] The fitness industry has seen strong growth over the last decade and new delivery models continue to emerge.  From 24 hour flexible fitness, to ‘fast and fit’ models targeting the time poor, the industry has a strong capacity to respond to changes in consumer demand.  It’s partly comprised of commercial health and fitness centres (e.g. gyms) that provide a venue or service where the public can come for advice and training in a single or group environment.  Preferences for outdoor physical exercise have led to groundswell of new entrants delivering “boot camp” style programs in local parks. Fitness services are also offered to the general public through:

  • Commercial sport and recreation centres
  • Corporate sector fitness programs
  • Holiday resorts and hotels
  • Educational institutions
  • Retirement villages
  • Freelance consultants

A number of community-based organisations also deliver fitness services. These organisations promote health and fitness in general and some cater to groups with special needs such as the aged, people with disabilities and injury rehabilitation. The trend towards fitness for health and improved quality of life has seen a growing involvement by the fitness sector in allied services. These kinds of services fit under the umbrella of the community services and health industry. FITNESS IN QUEENSLAND Sector profile: Occupations in the fitness sector include Fitness Instructor and Fitness Centre Manager.  Under the ANZSCO ABS classifications, as at November 2012 Fitness Instructor employment in Queensland increased by 13.8 percent in the last year to 4,600 persons. Queensland has an 18.3 percent share of the national employment of Fitness Instructors (25,200 persons national).[i]  Labour market information

  • Employment to 2016-2017 is expected to grow very strongly
  • Relatively low proportion of full-time jobs (30.8%)
  • Unemployment for Fitness Instructors is below average
  • Employed across several industries: Other Services, Arts and Recreation Services, Education and Training, Health Care and Social Assistance.  These industries have subdued employment growth prospects
  • The (internet) vacancy level is moderate. The proportion of workers leaving the occupation (and needing to be replaced) is 24 percent (annually) compared to the average of all occupations of 13.1 percent
  • Weekly earnings for full-time workers before tax is $600
  • Unemployment compared with other occupations is below average

The following information on occupational shortages, reasons for shortages, issues, and workforce responses is the result of the 2012 Skills Alliance Influence Your Industry’s Future workforce development survey.  This information has also been consolidated in the 2012-2013 Skills Report.  Occupations and skills shortages Fitness Instructor Reasons for shortages[ii]

  • Lack of skills/experience
  • Low wages
  • Training delivery issues

High turnover, employment arrangements, and employer characteristics are also issues for this sector. Key issues 

  • Personal trainers are experiencing increased expectations from their clients on nutritional advice.  While training provided by RTOs includes minimal training around healthy eating guidelines, more detailed complex diet and nutrition advice is outside the scope of what personal trainers receive formal training in.  This impacts on a person’s expectations of the RTO and may indicate a need for fitness based nutrition to be included in the training package.  Personal trainers also need to know who they can train and when to refer to health professional.  They need to work hand in hand with allied health
  • Outdoor group personal training – personal trainers need skills to facilitate small groups in different environments (e.g. parks) and also skills and knowledge in what is required in different settings (e.g. permits from councils, risk assessments, insurances etc.)
  • There is a need for business skills in the fitness industry (e.g. BAS, business planning, small business finances, marketing)
  • Group aquatic instructors are in critical shortage across the state
  • A key result of the 24-hour gym business model is the increase in the provision of gym facilities in regional areas as a result of the lower operating costs, which have made it economically viable to operate in locations with smaller populations
  • There is also reported to be a rise of personal trainers setting up micro-sized businesses that operate outdoors or as freelancers
  • Questions have been raised about the relevance of the Diploma of Fitness as the qualification between the Certificate IV and Degree qualifications. While the Diploma can be a good lead in to university courses there is no real career path for Diploma graduates that is different to the Certificate IV.  For example, the Diploma is not recognised by Medicare whereas degree qualified exercise physiologists are.  Certificate IV graduates are able to do personal training, similar to Diploma graduates. However while being more qualified to do rehabilitation work than Certificate IV graduates, they are not identified for rebates from Medicare or supported to the same extent by private health funds as Degree qualified exercise physiologists. Therefore, the Diploma is considered to sit between the Certificate IV qualified personal trainers and Degree qualified exercise physiologists but currently with no real recognition and no specific job differentiation from Certificate IVs

Fitness Australia references a 2010 industry survey (Kirby-Brown and Hall, 2010) that highlighted ten ways the industry can innovate to meet changes in consumer demand. These included:

  • Instant relevant information and its live consumption by consumers (e.g. self service programs, real time reviews of gym service – allowing instant adaptation)
  • Application of video streaming (streaming of a class or example exercise)
  • Personalisation (fitness programs, instant personalisation of machines on use)
  • Use of social networks (to organise activities or build personal or brand awareness)
  • Use of wireless devices (e.g. to record exercise programs or have admission organised through a mobile phone)
  • Adaptation of programs for senior citizens
  • Adaptation of programs for children
  • Relaxation/’escape’ fitness programs
  • Integration of services with charities and community groups (e.g. ‘workout miles’ that become a charitable donation, integration of services with local initiatives)
  • Increased focus on ‘green initiatives’ (e.g. use of green energy, use of recycled materials)[iii]

This report also highlighted that one of the biggest opportunities currently facing the fitness industry is the potential for it to link in with the general and allied health sector.  While traditionally, fitness has been about servicing the ‘well’, there is a market for the fitness workforce to contribute to the management of health issues of the ‘unwell’, who have been left in the hands of health sector professionals.[iv] Emerging trends It is touted in many forums that the growth and trend of social media and mobile-based apps will continue to modernise the industry, with fitness organisations at the forefront of creating more interactive apps and online-based programs. These innovations will allow personal trainers more flexibility and personalisation in providing one-on-one or small-group fitness instruction to clients anytime and anywhere.  For example, as fitness apps lead the way, a sector that has become an industry in itself is self-tracking.  These apps empower the user to keep tabs on themselves.[v]  Gyms and personal trainers can also use social media to increase membership numbers and create results based marketing systems.[vi] Current responses In terms of what strategies fitness have used to respond to these skills gaps, the top three responses were to:

  1. Provide training
  2. Sought funding or other grants from government
  3. Traineeships/Apprenticeships

Future strategies needed

  • Greater regulation of the fitness industry
  • Regulation of school (VETis) Certificate III in Fitness 


[i] ABS Labour Force Survey – Employment by Occupation Time Series for Queensland to November Quarter 2012
[ii] Skills Alliance Influence Your Industry’s Future Survey, 2012-2013, March 2013
[iii] The Australian Fitness Industry Report 2012, Fitness Australia, September 2012
[iv] IBID
[v] There really is an App for that, Reps Magazine, 2012
[vi] Social media changing the game for gyms and personal trainers, Australasian Leisure Management, 1 August 2012
Fitness FAQ

Fitness FAQ

FAQ – Fitness

Q: What is the best way to get a job in the fitness industry?

A: Most people working in the fitness industry have a Certificate III or IV in Fitness, so getting your qualification will be a starting point.  During training, you will be required to undertake practical work in a fitness centre and this is where you can build relationships that may lead to a job.  Many training organisations may also help with job search strategies on completion of your certificate.

Q: Why are careers in fitness popular and why is the industry growing fast?

A:  The main drivers that are positively affecting the industry and creating thousands of new jobs.  These industry drivers are:

  • Obesity epidemic
  • Promotion of healthy lifestyles
  • Growing awareness of the benefits of a healthy lifestyle

Q:  How is the allied health industry different from the fitness industry?

A: The allied health industry is related to fitness but is very different.  The allied health industry is made up of dieticians, exercise physiologists, occupational therapists, orthotists and prosthetists, podiatrists and psychologists.  These occupations will require a university degree.

Fitness Industry Jobs

Fitness Industry Jobs

Chiropractor – A chiropractor is a health care professional focused on the diagnosis and treatment neuromuscular disorders, with an emphasis on treatment through manual adjustment and/or manipulation of the spine. Most chiropractors seek to reduce pain and improve the functionality of patients as well as to educate them on how they can account for their own health via exercise, ergonomics and other therapies to treat back pain. Dietitian – Dietitians apply the art and science of human nutrition to help people understand the relationship between food and health and make dietary choices to attain and maintain health, and to prevent and treat illness and disease.  Fitness Centre Manager  – this position organises, controls and promotes the activities, facilities and resources of a fitness centre.  The position may also coach, instruct and train clients.  More information is provided in the following link.  Fitness Instructor  – covers the following job titles:

  • Aerobics Instructor
  • Group Exercise Instructors
  • Exercise Professional
  • Swimming Instructor
  • Gym Instructor
  • Aqua Instructor
  • Personal Trainer

Group Fitness Instructor – Trained and qualified to lead groups of people in fitness activities in a variety of settings including the gym and outdoor recreation settings.

Naturopath  As an naturopath you will administer alternative medicine based on a belief in vitalismfavoring a holistic approach with non-invasive treatment and generally avoids the use of surgery and drugs.  

Outdoor Activities Instructor – An outdoor recreation activity instructor instructs and guides individuals and groups in outdoor adventure activities such as bicycle touring, bushwalking, canoeing, caving, cross country skiing, horse trekking, rafting, rock climbing and sailing. Instructors develop the skills of participants so that they can act independently or with minimal supervision following the program, and may be required to conduct assessment

Physiotherapist – Physiotherapists can help a person to recover from surgery. Treatment options include a wide range of manual therapies, exercise programs, electrotherapy techniques and airway clearance techniques, tailored to your specific condition. Physiotherapists can also show you how to use, and where to get, equipment aids.

Pilates Instructor –  As a pilates instructor you will help individuals with body conditioning routines that may help build flexibility, muscle strength, and endurance in their legs, abdominals, arms, hips, and back. 


News and Articles

News and Articles

37 compelling reasons why Australia needs a National Physical Activity Action Plan – Australasian Leisure Management – 9 December 2015

Australian gym market to reach saturation within five years – Australasian Leisure Management – 23 February 2015

Fitness and wellness holidays a growing trend – Australasian Leisure Management – 4 February 2015

Fitness Australia highlights Boxing, kickboxing and MMA safety guidelines – Australasian Leisure Management – 3 February 2015

Precor identifies New Year trends for fitness operators – Australasian Leisure Management – 27 January 2015

Technogym highlights mywellness cloud and industry partnerships – Australasian Leisure Management – 25 January 2015

Australians spending $8.5 billion annually on fitness – Australasian Leisure Management – 22 January 2015

Precor advice on Building Community in your Gym – Australasian Leisure Management – 7 January 2015

Leading commercial fitness brand Precor has issued a ‘white paper’ Building Community in the Gym: Increasing Engagement Among Your Members, which highlights how “creating a sense of community and belonging in your gym is one of the most important assets to your business.”

Updated franchise industry code of conduct now in force –  Australasian Leisure Management – 3 January 2015

Operators in the $144 billion franchise sector in Australia risk new, heavy fines if they breach an updated code of conduct, which came into effect on 1st January.

Report identifies growth in personal training led by rising levels of health consciousness – Australasian Leisure Management – 3 December 2014

A new industry report from IBISWorld charts how the strong growth in personal training services over the past five years has been fueled by rising levels of health consciousness in Australia and a growing interest in weight-loss programs and fitness regimes.

Physiologist warns exercise or face rapid declining health in old age – Australasian Leisure Management – 29 November 2014

People must exercise regularly as they age or face the prospect of a potential rapid decline in their health, a national conference on ageing has heard.

CrossFit: elite fitness or pointless pain? – Sarah Hentges, The Conversation – 14 November 2014

It’s a known fact that exercise is addictive. But CrossFitters – those who take part in CrossFit’s brutal workouts and stringent diet – are infamous for their fanatical devotion to their fitness philosophy.

Fitness Australia app to improve issues of permit systems for outdoor training – Australasian Leisure Management – 12 November 2014

Fitness Australia has launched a new web based platform which it hopes will assist both fitness professionals and local governments in gaining a better understanding of permit systems for outdoor fitness and training.

How physical exercise protects the brain from stress-induced depression – Karolinska Institutet – 25 September 2014

Physical exercise has many beneficial effects on human health, including the protection from stress-induced depression.

Walking is the superfood of fitness, experts say – Dorene Internicola, Reuters – 29 September 2014

Walking may never become as trendy as CrossFit, as sexy as mud runs or as ego-boosting as Ironman races but for fitness experts who stress daily movement over workouts and an active lifestyle over weekends of warrior games, walking is a super star.

24/7 gyms increase to 26% of all gyms and fitness centres – Australasian Leisure Management – 24 September 2014

More than a quarter (26%) of gyms and fitness centres in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia and Hong Kong, now operate 24 hours a day.

Fitness industry recruitment for just $20 a week – Australasian Leisure Management – 23 September 2014

The team at Fitness Club Membership Retention have launched a new social media-based staff recruitment initiative where operators and clubs can list staff vacancies for just $20 a week.

Technology Makes Fitness More Interactive, Engaging – Emily Attwood, Athletic Business – September 2014

what’s driving this convergence of fitness and technology? A generation raised on Apples, smartphones and Google. The fitness industry is responding to this generation’s perceptions by thinking differently.

Daily Exercise May Halve Risk for Heart Failure – Medline Plus – 2 September 2014

Higher levels of activity reap greater benefits, researchers find.

STEP TO IT: WHY WALKING MATTERS – A joint initiative between Alzheimer’s Australia and the Heart Foundation 2014

Fitness Australia and Parks and Leisure Australia join to advance training in parks guidelines – Australasian Leisure Management – 27 August 2014

Industry peak bodies Parks and Leisure Australia and Fitness Australia have announced a partnership aimed at developing consistent policies for the delivery of commercial fitness services on public land.

Traditional fitness operators missing out on millennial market – Australasian Leisure Management – 23 August 2014

While recent research shows more Millennials are doing gym-type activities than any other generation, Les Mills International executives believe that fitness operators need to look at whether their products are meeting Millennials’ needs.

24/7 gyms to drive fitness industry revenues down – Australasian Leisure Management – 16 July 2014

While the value of the fitness industry has grown to an estimated $1.31 billion worldwide, with growth of 4.8% in the last five years, a new industry survey forecasts an upcoming  0.7% revenue decline in the Australian industry – mainly due to a mass-market shift to a preference for the cheaper, 24/7 gym chains.

165,000 fitness clubs attract almost 140 million members worldwide – Australasian Leisure Management – 11 June 2014

In 2013, the global fitness club industry totalled US$78.1 billion in revenue as more than 165,000 clubs attracted 138.7 million members – an increase from 131.7 million members in 2012.

Woman vs Wild –  Brave Sydneysider Lise Lafferty battles the Blue Mountains (and the self-doubtful voice in her head) for The North Face 100km run.. read more…

Workplace Health & Safety Guide for fitness businesses available here…