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Postgraduate Study - Putting a plan in motion

By Garrett Carlile, Current NCEF and University of Limerick student on Year 4, Bachelor of Science in Exercise & Health Fitness

Exercise and health has always been a big part of my life and I knew from a young age I wanted to pursue a career in this field but I was unsure how to put the plan in motion.

Following the completion of the one-year NCEF Certificate in Exercise & Health Fitness, I took some time out from my studies to work as a Personal Trainer and gain experience in the fitness industry. This experience was invaluable for me as I realised very quickly that working on a gym floor and teaching exercises classes wasn’t for me, so I returned to my studies with the NCEF in order to further my career progression.

The reason why I love the NCEF is how they deliver their courses. Students get the opportunity to tailor their learning experience. By having a flexible learning pathway, you are not committed to a 4-year continual degree programme. Students can choose an area/s of specialty and achieve awards and qualifications along the way. This gave me the ability to progress in my career, as I studied while building an extremely strong resume.

Along with my qualification as a Fitness Instructor, I gained specialist qualifications in Pilates & Corrective Exercise, Strength & Conditioning for Athletes & Teams, and I studied adult education and qualified as an NCEF Tutor by completing the Diploma in Exercise & Health Fitness Tutor Education course.

In my fourth year, I really enjoyed the shift and focus on business modules and how to manage a business. This knowledge became invaluable to me, as I set up my own company shortly after commencing Year 4 that has become very successful.

This well-rounded approach by the NCEF has set a very strong foundation for me to pursue a career as a Physiotherapist and I've taken the next step in my educational journey into postgraduate study with the University of Cumbria, where I will complete a MSc in Physiotherapy.

It’s important to understand that no course will give you absolute knowledge on all areas. If you are serious about a career in health and exercise, you must complete your own research on the study options and routes out there. From my own experience though, I couldn’t recommend the NCEF pathway enough! I loved every minute.

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