The dynamic Queensland fitness, sport and recreation industry is characterised by a vast range of activities and services, which are commonly broken down into the four sectors of:

Fitness                                          Sport

Outdoor Recreation                   Community Recreation




The Queensland fitness, sport, recreation and racing industries employ an estimated 47,600 persons and accounts for approximately 440,000 volunteers (not including outdoor recreation). This figure is believed to be conservative due to the national ANZSIC classification of sport and recreation activities across other industry sectors including Education and Training, Healthcare and Social Assistance, Accommodation and Food Services, Public Administration and Safety, and Tourism. In addition to the 22,600 persons counted under the sport and recreation activity category of ANZSIC, it is estimated an additional 20,000-25,000 people are employed in sport and recreation occupations in other industry categories in Queensland.

  • As at February 2017 Arts and Recreation Services in Queensland employed 41,900 persons which is 19 per cent of the national Arts and Recreation Services employment of 219,900 persons.
  • As at February 2017, Sport and Recreation Activities in Queensland employed approximately 22,600 persons (54 per cent of the total Queensland Arts and Recreation Services workforce).

Key occupations in Queensland

Employment figures for the key occupations in the fitness, sport and recreation industry are based on the ANZSCO ABS occupation classifications. QFSR Skills Alliance considers the statistical figures below very conservative as the ambiguity of national reporting descriptors and classifications and how employers/employees might report /associate their occupation, impacts on these statistics. The statistics and information below are taken from the ABS Labour Force Survey – Employment by Occupation Time Series for Queensland for February Quarter 2017 and the Australian Government Job Outlook initiative.

Fitness Instructor (ANZSCO 4521)

  • Under the ANZSCO ABS classifications, as at February 2017 Fitness Instructor employment in Queensland decreased 8.2 percent in the last year to 6,800 persons.
  • Queensland has a 22.2 percent share of the national employment of Fitness Instructors (30,800 persons nationally).
  • Very strong growth is expected over the 5 years to May 2022.

Outdoor Adventure Guide (ANZSCO 4522)

  • As at February 2017, there were 200 Outdoor Adventure Guides employed in Queensland. This represents 6.5% of the Australian employment level of 3,700 Outdoor Adventure Guides.
  • This Queensland figure is a 70.5% decrease from the last year (February 2016, 800 Outdoor Adventure Guides employed in Queensland). In the future this could lead to an occupational shortage of Outdoor Adventure Guides.
  • It should be noted that while the above figures are from a national data source, QFSR Skills Alliance and the Queensland outdoor recreation industry believe these figures are not as critical as the data suggests. A 70% decrease of the workforce has not been observed by the industry.
  • Very strong growth of 28.4% is expected over the 5 years to May 2022.

Sport Coaches, Instructors and Officials (ANZSCO 4523)

  • As at February 2017, Sports Coaches, Instructors and Officials employment in Queensland was 7,400 persons, a decrease 26.5% from the previous year.
  • Queensland has a 17.3 percent share of the national employment of Sports Coaches, Instructors and Officials (43,000 national). This figure does not include the volunteers who perform these roles.
  • Very strong growth is expected over the 5 years to May 2022 (23%).
Sportspersons (ANZSCO 4524)
  • As at February 2017, there were 2,500 Sportspersons employed in Queensland.
  • This represents 23.5% of the Australian employment level of 10,800 of Sportspersons.
Industry research

Industry research

One of QFSR Skills Alliance key roles is to undertake research to understand the most current workforce development issues and needs of the fitness, sport and recreation industry in Queensland.

HOW? We undertake research including:

  • Desktop research and analysis of data, reports, industry articles, government policy
  • Surveys
  • Workshops and face to face meetings
  • Participating in existing industry and regional alliances, networks and partnerships 

WHAT? We focus on issues to do with:

  • Current and future skill needs across the industry around the State, including existing or likely skill shortages or gaps
  • Major issues or factors that will be the ‘drivers’ behind industry’s demand for skills into the future
  • Developments and issues at the regional level likely to impact upon regional skilling needs
  • Barriers impeding education and training delivery
  • Appropriate strategies and responses to address the shortages
  • Ways QFSR Skills Alliance can assist organisations to address their workforce development needs

WHY? The information is used to:

  • Help shape Government’s policy and training frameworks, and respond to the needs of our industry in terms of vocational education and training (VET) funding allocations
  • Target brokerage arrangements to areas of identified training need
  • Develop specific workforce development projects and initiatives to assist industry to work with cultural and indigenous groups in the community
  • Identify opportunities for funding and partner with organisations to implement these projects and initiatives
  • Assist industry with recruitment and retention strategies
  • Assist peaks and organisations with current, up to date research and data to support their own projects, initiatives and grant applications
  • Provide information to registered training providers, schools and students

To do this effectively, we need to be able to collect relevant information from industry employers, organisations and their representative groups and associations. If you have information about the skilling and workforce development needs of your workers and volunteers to discuss your issues and ideas, please contact us on 07 3367 0833.

What is VET?

What is VET?

Vocational Education and Training (VET) is education and training that focuses on providing skills for work.  VET courses are offered in schools, colleges, community centres, TAFE institutes and private registered training organisations.

VET qualifications include Certificates I, II, III and IV, Diplomas, Advanced Diplomas and selected Degrees and are nationally recognised when completed with a Registered Training Organisation (RTO).

VET qualifications will help you to enter the workforce, but you can also continue building on your qualifications throughout your career. Completing one VET qualification will often give you credit for a more advanced qualification, either in the VET sector or even at university.

Important links:

The Australian Government Department of Education and Training is responsible for national policies and programs that help Australians access quality and affordable early child care and childhood education, school education, higher education, vocational education and training, international education and research. provides information about the Queensland VET system including the Annual Investment Plan.

Queensland Skills Gateway helps Queenslanders to make informed choices about training. The website provides information on vocational education and training available across Queensland including courses, training providers, government funding and career pathways. The site features a simple questionnaire to help individuals find out if they are eligible for government subsidised training.

myApprenticeship self-service website – allow apprentices and trainees to conveniently and securely view information and complete a range of tasks related to their apprenticeship or traineeship. This includes updating contact information, accessing training contract details and viewing their training results is the official National Register on VET in Australia and is the authoritative source of information on training packages, qualifications, accredited courses, units of competency, skill sets and Registered Training Organisations.

ASQA – the Australian Skills Quality Authority is the national regulator for Australia’s vocational education and training sector. ASQA regulates courses and training providers to ensure nationally approved quality standards are met.

Skills IQ is the national industry skills councils for the fitness, sport and recreation industry funded by the Australian Government to support skills development.

Industry consultation

Industry consultation

There are currently no industry consultations.