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Personal Training and Sports Coaching Diploma

This Quality Assured Level 3 Diploma is suitable for all those who are or wish to become a personal trainer or a sports coach.
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Level 3 / Quality Licence Scheme / ODL84

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over 12 months and £ deposit

over 12 months and £ deposit


Course summary


Expert Tutoring

12 months tutor support


24hr Access to

Course, assignments & tutor


Endorsed by the

Quality Licence Scheme


NUS Card Eligibility

Enjoy student discounts

Course introduction

It will be of interest to you if you wish to make a living from training others, advising about exercise and nutrition and designing training programmes to meet the needs of your clients, whether they wish to improve their strength and/or performance or if their goal is to lose weight. There is increased for demand for specialist skills such as those obtained from completing this course due to recent trends and facts regarding the importance of a healthy balanced lifestyle.

The course comprises of ten modules and concludes with an online examination. Materials can be studied online or students have the option to have the printed materials delivered for an additional charge of £65.

Course Content:

Module 1: Becoming a personal trainer

The first module explores the role of the personal trainer or sports coach and the type of qualities you need to possess to succeed in this role. It looks at the key things you need to consider when embarking on a career as a personal trainer, including getting certified and training before you actually take on any clients. It gives advice about working for yourself and working for others, highlighting the advantages and disadvantages of both. It also looks at putting together a curriculum vitae and how you might get yourself known, so that you get clients to work with. Finally, there is information about the essential equipment you will need when working as a personal trainer or sports coach.

Module 2: Knowing about anatomy and physiology

Understanding how the human body functions is essential when working as a personal trainer. It's important that you know which exercises train which body parts and are able to explain this to your clients. We concentrate on knowing about the human body in this module. The basics of anatomy and physiology are explained throughout the module, including information about bones, joints, muscles, cartilage, ligaments and tendons.

This module also looks at the heart and the circulatory system as well as the respiratory system, including details about the effects of smoking on the respiratory system.

Finally, the importance of core stability, and how we go about improving our core stability, is explained.

Module 3: Knowing about nutrition

When looking at the subject of diet and nutrition, it is important for us to consider what nutrition actually is, and why we need food. This module concentrates on exploring the key details about good nutrition and how our digestive systems work, so that you can advise clients on the types of foods they need to eat to help them achieve their goals.

This module also helps us understand how to introduce good nutrition into our daily lives and those of our clients and teaches us concepts such as "Energy Balance", "Body Mass Index" and "The Harris Benedict Equation".

The important dietary nutrients of carbohydrate, protein and fats and oils are explained in more detail, so that you can explain the function of these nutrients to your clients.

Module 4: Knowing your clients

This module concentrates on the key to your success as a personal trainer or sports coach, that is, knowing your clients. It guides you through the things you need to find out about your clients before the initial consultation and how you might make a good first impression when conducting the initial consultation. Leading on from this, it explores how to perform the fitness assessment of your client, so that you have sufficient information to be able to design their personal training programme.

Module 5: Knowing about exercising

Once you are in possession of all the necessary information, you will be able to design a training programme, which meets the needs of your client. The main emphasis will be on exercising, so you need to have extensive knowledge about the type of exercises you are going to include in each of your client's individual programmes, from warming up, resistance training, strength training, and aerobic training to cooling down at the end of the session.

As well as the type of exercises, when planning an exercise programme, you need to consider how hard and how often your client will need to do these exercises in order to achieve their fitness goals.

Once you have designed their basic programme, you need to keep records of your client's sessions and be aware of when they need to move to the next level. This module gives you all the necessary tools to confidently do this.

It also looks at putting together a beginner's training programme to start running and how your client might then advance from being a beginner to running a marathon.

Module 6: Training young people

This module will be of particular importance to those personal trainers and sports coaches who train young people, as well as the parents of young athletes, as it deals with all the issues that may affect a young athletes health and performance.

Some of the questions we pose are, "Why are young athletes more susceptible to dehydration than adult athletes?" And " How can we encourage young athletes to consume enough fluid?"

We learn, not only about their fluid needs, but also about their energy, protein and carbohydrate needs and how these differ to the needs of adult athletes.

Meal timing is also an important issue for young athletes, as quite often, when "on the go" all the time, eating is not a priority for young athletes. It is up to those that are responsible for their training to ensure that young athletes consume sufficient fluid and food before, during and after exercise.

Module 7: Training groups with particular requirements

This Diploma in Personal Training and Sports Coaching is designed to cover all elements of personal training and highlight how everyone can benefit from good nutrition and physical activity.

There are, however, specific issues, which relate to the training of some groups of people, namely, women, older people and those with diabetes and/or heart disease. This module looks at these issues and how to adapt training programmes and advice accordingly.

Specific to women are the issues of pregnancy, premenstrual tension and the menopause. We consider all these in general terms and how they impact on a training programme.

Module 8: Advising about weight management

Many clients will come to you with one goal in mind, that is, to lose weight, whether it is for their own self-esteem and appearance or to perform better in a sporting event.

This module gives advice and tips on how to lose weight healthily and, once a target weight has been reached, how to maintain that weight. It looks at safe, healthy ways of losing body fat, while still having the energy and strength to perform well, important if your client is striving to run a marathon, for example.

A sample weight-loss eating plan is included, as well as tips for advising your clients to lose weight successfully, by, for example, increasing their metabolic rate.

You may have clients who want to increase their body weight, but need to ensure that they gain muscle and not body fat, which will hinder their performance. This module advises on how to gain weight successfully, by following a weight-gain eating plan and give weight-gain tips, which you can pass on to your clients.

Finally, we look at eating disorders and how to recognise whether your client is suffering from an eating disorder and what you should do about it.

Module 9: Advising about fluid management

In this module, we examine why we need to keep hydrated when exercising and the best way of obtaining sufficient quantities of fluid throughout the day.

We look at the role of electrolytes, and learn how to recognize and prevent dehydration, so that you can inform your clients about the need to drink plenty of water.

We also explore some facts about alcohol and how our bodies metabolize it, as well as the effects of alcohol on our health and how it might affect whether your client achieves their goals or not.

Module 10: Building and maintaining a successful personal training business

The final module of this course looks at how to build and maintain a successful personal training business.

You may want to continue working on your own or you may find that you need to take on staff to cope with the demand for your services.

Either way, you will need to create an image, maintain records, pay tax and deal with health and safety issues. You may also wish to develop a marketing plan. This module helps you with all these issues, as well as giving advice on how to retain clients.

Coaches working part-time can be paid around £20 per hour or more depending on the employer. Full-time salaries for coaches working with schools and colleges can be around £30,000 a year. Professional teams may pay considerably more. - C&G Qualification Guide 2009

Required knowledge

No previous knowledge or experience is essential to study this course.


Final online multiple choice examination counts for 100% of the final grade. Throughout the course there are ten SAPs (coursework) and a thesis. The course clearly states that this is not mandatory to complete as it has no bearing on the final grade. We do suggest that students complete these as this will not only assist them in examination preparation but also will give the student the skill set should they wish to continue their studies (continuous professional development) at a higher level.


At the end of this course successful learners will receive a Certificate of Achievement from Quality Licence Scheme and a Learner Unit Summary (which lists the components the learner has completed as part of the course).

The course has been endorsed under the Quality Licence Scheme.The Provider has undergone an external quality check to ensure that the organisation and the courses it offers, meet defined quality criteria. The completion of this course alone does not lead to a regulated qualification* but may be used as evidence of knowledge and skills gained.

The Learner Unit Summary may be used as evidence towards Recognition of Prior Learning if you wish to progress your studies in this subject. To this end the learning outcomes of the course have been benchmarked at QLS Level 3 against level descriptors published by Ofqual, to indicate the depth of study and level of demand/complexity involved in successful completion by the learner.

The Quality Licence Scheme is part of the Skills and Education Group, a charitable organisation that unites education and skills-orientated organisations that share similar values and objectives. With more than 100 years of collective experience, the Skills and Education Group’s strategic partnerships create opportunities to inform, influence and represent the wider education and skills sector.

The Skills and Education Group’s knowledge and experience of working within the awarding sector enables them to work with training providers, through the Quality Licence Scheme, to help them develop high-quality courses and/or training programmes for the non-regulated market.

*Regulated qualification refers to those qualifications that are regulated by Ofqual / CCEA / Qualification Wales.

Course modules

  • Module 1: Becoming a personal trainer
  • Module 2: Knowing about anatomy and physiology
  • Module 3: Knowing about nutrition
  • Module 4: Knowing your clients
  • Module 5: Knowing about exercising
  • Module 6:Training young people
  • Module 7: Training groups with particular requirements
  • Module 8: Advising about weight management
  • Module 9: Advising about fluid management
  • Module 10: Building and maintaining a successful personal training business

Learner support

12 Months Tutor Support. Tutors are available to answer student questions relating to course materials and to comment on the assignments that are sent in to state how well students have understood the unit content.


What does NCC stand for?

NCC originally stood for the National Consortium of FE (Further Education) Colleges. This brought together the FE Colleges to achieve the best provision. Regular national meetings were attended by both Colleges and Government agencies who funded them. This was very helpful to them both to best deliver training to their students.

For more than 25 years NCC has supplied FE Colleges with learning materials as well as student marketing.

NCC now specialise in online training of a very high quality to students both self-funded, paid for by schools, employers and training providers.

What is distance learning?

Distance learning is the most flexible and convenient approach to studying. There is no need for you to attend college and you can study anytime, anyplace, anywhere that fits in with your lifestyle. Distance learning programmes are ideal for people who may have a job, family commitments, or any other commitment that won’t allow them time off to study.

What is the difference between the online and paper versions of courses?

Both our online and paper courses are completed via an online learning portal (LMS) which you can access after you receive your login details by email. Please ensure that you check your junk email if you do not receive your login details within 48 hours.

All learners will submit their assignments, receive feedback and correspond with their tutor directly through the LMS. If you require help from our support team, then simply email [email protected].

If you opt for the online course, you will not receive any course materials through the post. Everything is available via the LMS.

If you opt for the paper version, you are simply paying for a study book to be printed and posted to your home, or place of work. You will use this book as a reference guide, but you will still be required to upload your assignments and correspond with your tutor via the LMS.

If you are unable to access our online LMS, we do have alternative options available, so please email [email protected] in order to request further support.

What do I need to do to get started?

We recommend that you choose a course that will interest you and help you to achieve your ambitions. If you would like some advice, or further information, contact us here or dial 0333 3445 690.

To purchase a course, simply click on the ‘Buy now’ button against your chosen course and follow the on screen instructions. Alternatively if you would prefer to purchase the course over the phone, call 0333 3445 690 and speak to one of our expert course advisors.

How much will it cost?

The cost largely depends on the type and size of the course. The course cost is determined by the expenses associated with its provision, taking into consideration the course's size and complexity, development costs, the presence of a study materials, and the level of tutor support required. Some courses also necessitate additional in-person assessments by assessors, which incur additional expenses and consequently affect the course's cost.

All prices are clearly stated on the course description page and will always be displayed prior to you committing to purchase a course.

Please note that there may be additional fees required should your course require an external invigilated assessment, such as A Levels, ICB qualifications etc. To clarify, please speak to a course advisor.

How do I enrol?

Once you've chosen your course, you have two options for enrolment:

  1. You can purchase the course online by clicking the "Buy now" button, which will enrol you automatically.
  2. Alternatively, you can call our helpline at 0333 3445 690, and our expert course advisors will assist you in signing up for the course and arrange for the delivery of any requested additional learning materials to your address.

All courses are available to purchase in full or via affordable monthly payments over 12 months. A £29 non-refundable deposit is required for monthly payments, and you will be required to set up a monthly direct debit.

We do not require you to complete a credit check to sign up for monthly payments.

How quickly will I receive my course materials?

We guarantee that you will receive any course materials ordered within 5 working days of registering, but for many of our courses it may take no more than 48 hours.

The course materials are always sent to you via a tracked courier service, to ensure that you receive your study book within our stated period.

Do I need any additional books or equipment to do my course?

All the relevant information required to complete your course is available via the LMS. Additional research via the internet is encouraged, depending on the level you are working at, to bolster knowledge of the subject area.

There is no requirement to purchase any additional materials.

What support will I receive?

You will have access to a dedicated personal tutor whom you can contact through the Learning Management System (LMS) for assistance and guidance on any course-related matters. Your tutor will only initiate contact in response to your messages. If you encounter any difficulties reaching your tutor, please don't hesitate to email us at [email protected]

Many courses require you to submit work to your tutor during the period of study, and your tutor will assess your work and provide feedback to you within 10 working days. Your tutor is available to you as much as you need them.

Please note that the course includes tutor support for a duration of 12 months. If you require additional time, please inform us, and we will make every effort to provide you with an option for a paid extension, if feasible, to assist you in completing your course.

Please be aware that our tutors are actively assisting multiple learners, and to ensure they are not inundated with excessive workloads, we have implemented a policy limiting learners to submitting a maximum of three units of work for evaluation at any given time. We recommend that you upload your completed units as you finish them. This way, you can benefit from your tutor's feedback to enhance your future assignment submissions.

How long will it take for my work to be marked by my tutor?

Your work will be marked and feedback returned to you within 10 working days after submission. This is because our tutors are required to provide detailed, considered feedback to our learners that may take a while to formulate. We find that by working this way, our learners actually complete their course in less time, as they rarely need to submit an assignment more than twice.

Whilst it is possible to submit multiple assignments at the same time, we advise that our learners submit only one at a time. We want our learners to develop as they progress through their course, and find this is best achieved when a student embarks on a new module having taken into account tutor feedback from the previous submission.

Kindly note that our tutors are currently supporting multiple learners simultaneously. In order to maintain a balanced workload for them, we have established a policy that restricts learners to submitting a maximum of three units of work for evaluation at any given time.

How long should it take to complete a course?

Depending on the course you have chosen, and the amount of time you can commit, it could take from 6 weeks to 12 months to complete your course. Your end of support date is when you need to have your course copmpleted by in order to be able to be certificated, this is usually 12 months from purchase.

The duration of the course is largely down to you. The beauty of home learning is that it allows you complete flexibility to fit your studies around your lifestyle and other commitments. You can dedicate as much, or as little, time as you want to your studies - no one will be chasing you for your work or asking why you haven’t submitted an assignment.

We do strongly recommend, though, that before you purchase a course you assess your ability to commit the necessary time to completing the course in a timeframe that will not leave you losing your motivation.

Will I have to sit an examination?

All of our courses are accredited, so you need to show that you have acquired the knowledge to pass the course – this may involve sitting an examination, but it depends on the course you have chosen.

Some courses require you to be continually assessed throughout the course, while others may require an end of course exam or assignment (which may be completed at home) to be submitted to your tutor.

Certain types of qualifications, A-levels and GCSEs for example, do require you to sit invigilated exams at a registered test centre. You will need to organise and pay for the examinations yourself, however full details of what you need to do will be available from the centre who are delivering the qualification.

If in doubt, please email [email protected], NCC can then discuss or put you in touch directly with the course provider.

Will I receive a qualification when I complete the course?

All of our courses are accredited and you will receive a certificate upon successful completion of the course.

For more information about this please see the section of the website that details how awarding bodies work and what the different types of qualifications are:

Can I take more than one course at a time?

Yes, you can take as many courses as your time allows, but we would recommend that you clearly evaluate how much time you can commit to your courses of study.

The good news is that if your circumstances change you can always take a limited break and come back to your studies to save your paid for support.

If you decide to enrol on more than one course at the same time, speak to our enquiries team for any bundle deals or offers.

Can I study from outside the UK?

Certainly, in most instances, there are no geographical constraints on where you can undertake your studies. However, it's important to note that specific courses may be subject to geographical limitations imposed by the Awarding Organisation, and these restrictions will be clearly stated in the course description.

You just need to be aware that all tutors are based in the UK and work may need to be submitted to them via post, although in most cases e-mail can be used.

Where the course requires that you sit an invigilated exam at a test centre, there are many exam centres outside of the UK. However, we would advise that you check with us before purchasing one of these courses if you want to study from abroad.

What if I’ve chosen the wrong course?

If, after receiving the course, you decide it isn’t the right course for you, you may return the materials within 14 days, provided you have not yet submitted any coursework for evaluation. Please note that you will be responsible for covering the return shipping costs. We will refund your payment, minus a non-refundable deposit of £29. Additionally, you have the option to select an alternative course that better matches your goals and aspirations.

For any help on cancelling your course please email [email protected], we will only deal with cancellation enquiries via email.

What is a Totum Card?

Totum is the new brand for UK student cards and replaces the old NUS student card. NCC students are eligible to sign-up for the Totum card where applicable, giving access to a multitude of retail, food and travel special discounts. For more information, you can visit their website:

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