Fitness Instructor/Personal Trainer

HCEHF Year 1

Full-Time 2 Year Course

Eligible for SUSI Funding

Love it. Learn it. Live it.

Higher Certificate in Exercise and Health Fitness

Who is the accrediting body?


All NCEF courses and modules are accredited by the University of Limerick (UL). On successful completion of the course, students will graduate from UL with a Level 6 Major NFQ Higher Certificate in Exercise and Health Fitness.

  • University of Limerick Accredited
  • Level 6 (Major) on the Irish National Framework of Qualifications (NFQ)
  • Level 5 on the European Qualifications Framework (EQF)
  • Europe Active/E-Reps Exercise for Health Specialist (SQF Level 5)
  • 120 European Credit Transfer System (ECTS) Credits




What does the course cover?


Year 1 consists of 9 modules and final examinations:

  • SS2001 Human Movement Studies
  • SS2011 Lifestyle, Fitness, Wellness & Nutrition
  • SS2021 Fitness Assessment and Programme Design
  • SS2031 Management & Work Placement
  • SS2041 Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council (PHECC) - First Aid Responder
  • SS2051 Studio Classes in Exercise to Music & Free Movement (Practical)
  • SS2061 Resistance Training with Weights, Machines, Kettlebells (Practical)
  • SS2071 Circuit Training, Body Conditioning, HIIT and Bootcamp Training (Practical)
  • SS2081 Step Training, Flexibility, Foam Rolling (Practical)
  • SS2092 Final Examinations (Theory and Practical)
For detailed course content please click here Year 2 consists of a choice of the following modules:
  • SS3001 Advanced Personal Training
  • SS3111 & SS3121 Strength & Conditioning for Athletes & Teams
  • SS3131, SS3141, SS3151, SS3161, SS3171 - Pilates & Corrective Exercise
  • SS3021 Children's Fitness
  • SS3031 Fit for Life Wellness Coaching
  • SS3051 Active Ageing for Older Adults
  • SS3061 Business Facility Operations in Exercise & Health Fitness
For more detailed course content on the Higher Certificate in Exercise and Health Fitness click here




How much does it cost?


Academic Year 2021/22 Fees

Year 1 of the Higher Certificate in Exercise & Health Fitness (HCEHF) programme fee for the 2021/22 academic year is €3,550

Option 1: Discounted Payment for Full Fees

If course fees are paid in full by the acceptance date on your offer letter, a discount of €250 is applicable = Total Due €3,300

*This option requires full payment of €3,300 on acceptance of your place on the course and includes a non-refundable deposit of €995.00.

Option 2: (2 Payments) Total fees €3,550

Non-refundable deposit payment of €995 due on acceptance of your place on the course.

The balance of fees, €2,555 is due on or before Tuesday 31/08/2021

Non-Leaving Certificate 2021 applicants: Full fees due by Thursday 5th August.

Please Note: Once students are registered, all fees paid are non-refundable/non-transferable.

* Provisional HCEHF Year 2 fees for 2022/23 are €3,550 however, this may be subject to change.

SUSI FUNDING: This course is eligible for SUSI funding however, all course fees must be paid in advance of registration and funds are reimbursed to students upon receipt of funding from the UL Fees Office.




What am I qualified to do?


The Higher Certificate in Exercise and Health Fitness is a 2-year programme in which Year 1 is common to all students and in Year 2, students choose their options from a range of specialist qualifications according to their interest. After Year 1, you will be qualified to supervise and instruct on the gym floor including the cardio, machine weights and free weight areas. You will also be qualified to teach group exercise classes in:

  • Circuit Training
  • Body Conditioning
  • High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)
  • Studio Fitness, Exercise to Music
  • Step Training
  • Resistance Training
​You will also be trained to conduct fitness assessments on individuals and groups and design exercise programmes suitable for a variety of fitness levels, different needs and goals. First Aid Response (FAR) from the Pre-Hospital Emergency Care Council (PHECC) is also covered as a module in this first year. Year 2 provides our students with the opportunity to become Advanced Specialists by specialising in areas such as Personal Training, Strength & Conditioning for Athletes & Teams, Pilates & Corrective Exercise, Active Ageing for Older Adults, Business Facility Operations, Fit for Life Wellness Coaching or Children's Fitness.




Entry Requirements


Applicants should hold the Irish Leaving Certificate with minimum Grade O6 in five Ordinary Level subjects (including Maths, Irish or another language, and English) OR an approved equivalent or higher qualification. Other standards within Leaving Certificate or other levels of education will be considered under the NCEF/UL Recognised Prior Learning (RPL) scheme. A full supporting statement should also be submitted with your application. This should be 500-1000 words in length and should outline your reasons for applying for this programme. Non EU Nationals must submit a Study Visa, copies of passport documentation and proof of employment for the last 5 years Applicants should have good communication skills and enjoy working with people. NCEF reserves the right to interview if required.




Apply Now!


Applications are now open for the 2020/21 academic year! Apply here




When and where can I do this course?


The 2-Year Higher Certificate in Exercise & Health Fitness course takes place in: Venue: University of Limerick Contact Days: Tutorials are scheduled between Monday to Friday Time: 10am to 5pm Start Date: Autumn 2021 (exact date to be confirmed).