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How Do I Get Free or Cheap Personal Trainer Courses in The UK?


Cost is often an issue for people in the UK who want to do a course to get qualified as a personal trainer. Here we discuss some of the issues related to course cost, some of the public funding sources available, as well as the pricing options and special offers we've put in place to make sure ours is the best value PT course offer in the industry...

0% Interest Loan from Discovery

We give aspiring students of any course valued at above £250, which includes our personal trainer course and gym instructor course, the option to apply for a loan from us to cover the cost of their training.

After their course is completed, they pay the money back to us in monthly installments. The amount they pay back is exactly what they borrow; absolutely no interest is charged.

Our credit broker, Pay4Later, assesses the applications and makes a decision as to whether a potential student should be given a loan. This decision is based mainly on the outcome of a credit check, but also on a few lesser things like a person’s current income, any history of bankruptcy or county court judgments, and any outstanding loans they have yet to repay.

Applicants who do not pass these checks unfortunately cannot receive a loan from us.

24+ Advanced Learning Loans

These are a government scheme to help adults pay for college courses or vocational training. You need to be aged twenty-four years or older to apply for one, hence the name. The course you want to study has to be at level 3 or 4, which is fine for our purpose as personal training courses are at levels 3 and 4.

You won’t have to begin paying back the loan until you have finished your course and are earning more than £21,000 a year. These loans are a good alternative for people who have been refused a loan elsewhere, as these loans are not dependent on income and do not require a credit check.

The 24+ Advanced Learning Loan also has a Bursary Fund which you may be entitled to if you need help with the cost of some additional things while studying, e.g. childcare or travel related to your course.

If you want to try to use one of these loans to fund your personal trainer course, you will need to do your training with a provider in England that is approved to offer loans by the Skills Funding Agency.

See here for how to apply for a 24+ Advanced Learning Loan…

Credit Cards

Many credit card companies and banks are willing to issue people credit cards that hold enough credit to pay for a gym instructor or personal trainer course, especially a Discovery course which will be significantly lower in price than most other course providers in the fitness industry.

If you have a stable, or even a not-terrible credit rating, you should be able to find one credit card provider from all the ones out there that will issue you a card. This is a good option for people who already have some savings which they can put towards their training, and just need help putting together the rest of the money.

You will of course have to pay back the money gradually and with interest, but it’s not difficult to keep up with credit card payments if you’re in employment, and employment usually comes fairly soon to newly qualified fitness professionals.

Employer Funding

If you work in some type of health and fitness establishment, then your employer might be willing to pay for you to get a new qualification, for the reason that it would also benefit their business to have a more highly trained employee. Some establishments have budgets for the purpose of training their staff in this manner.

We have trained several members of staff at fitness clubs whose managers have sent them to us to up-skill their qualifications. There are also instances when we are hired to send one of our tutors to a fitness establishment to deliver a course to a group of employees.

You should talk to your manager or the head of your place of work and find out whether this is something that could be applicable to you.

Proxy Loan Applicant

If you do not have a strong enough credit history to qualify for one of our 0% interest loans, then you could possibly get around that by having someone else, usually a family member, who would be more eligible, apply for the loan and pay for your course, then you just pay the monthly repayments to them for them to pay to us going forward. So in effect you buy the course and they act as a proxy.

Gym Instructor Scholarship for Schools and Colleges

Discover Learning offer a free gym instructor course scholarship to any secondary school or further education college in England or Wales who wants it. This scholarship entitles the institution to nominate a different student each year to undertake our Level 2 Gym Instructor Course for free.

If you are currently studying in an academic institution, you could talk to the sports or careers department and ask them to sign up to this scholarship and put you forward for the free gym instructor course. Explain that it’s an excellent opportunity for them to provide one of their students with a free professional qualification in a major industry.

Armed Forces Resettlement Money

All branches of the armed forces (Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines) provide funding for ex-service men and women to do a personal trainer course, if they have served for long enough. Those who served for four years or more are entitled to receive £1000 towards their training, and those who served for eight years or more are entitled to £2000.

To receive this funding, the course the individual wants to take must be provided by an ELCAS (Enhanced Learning Credit Administration System) registered company. We, Discovery Learning, are an ELCAS registered company. Many ex armed forces personnel do personal trainer courses with us.

Thanks for reading. If you have any questions or would like to talk more about your course funding options, give us a call on the number at the top of the screen or leave a comment below and we’ll get back to you…


Our packages offer a range of courses with flexible option, giving you the best possible value to start a new career or develop your professional skills.