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Children’s Exercise and Obesity

  • Children’s Exercise and Obesity


Childhood obesity has become a serious issue in the last years in the UK and this has resulted in quite a high demand for fitness professionals who are specialised in working with overweight children in order to help them improve their health as well as teach them how to have a healthy approach towards eating and exercise.

This particular course contains a strong psychological component, with lots of guidance on behaviour change and how to motivate and support children aged between 5 and 16 and their families to address weight problems.

Once enrolled in this course, students will gain an understanding of social and environmental causes of Britain’s childhood obesity epidemic as well as some of the prevention strategies that are widely used by those already in the industry.

Who is this course for?

This course is perfect for those wanting to specialise in this specific area of fitness and want to focus on working more with children in schools, fitness establishments, medical facilities or the community in general.

The course is also aimed at fitness professionals who have an interest in the current childhood obesity crisis and would like to learn how to approach and correct this issue.


The course is available at our Acton and Manchester academies.

You will be required to attend two separate, 2-day components (a total of 4 attendance days) and will undergo approximately 60 hours of supported home study prior to the course. The duration of study is likely to span over 6 to 10 weeks but this depends partly on the course date availability.


There are no prerequisite qualifications for enrolling on this course but learners must be aged 16 or above and should be competent in written and spoken English as well as have basic computer literacy skills.


This course is comprised of the following two parts:

Part 1: YMCA Awards Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing - Health Related Exercise for Children

The Health Related Exercise for Children is the qualification required to deliver exercise sessions for children between the ages of 5 and 16. It’s particularly useful for those interested in working as an after school club leader, activity teaching assistant, children’s activity coordinator or a youth worker involved in children’s exercise and physical activity.

The course teaches effective exercise techniques for children as well as best ways to motivate children in activities that maintain and enhance their cardiorespiratory fitness and muscular strength and endurance.

Specific taught components:

  • Muscular and Skeletal system and muscle actions of the body cardio-respiratory system
  • Components and principles of health and fitness and the benefits of exercise for children; concepts and components of fitness
  • Warm-ups, preparatory stretching, main workout, cool down component, developmental stretching
  • Promoting physical activity to children and families and the psychological barriers for participation
  • Plan, teach and evaluate a safe and effective children’s exercise programme
  • Conduct and evaluate health related exercise sessions
  • Session plans, lesson plans and developmental programmes
  • Health and safety in a fitness environment
  • Dyspraxia, growth related injuries and exercise appropriate for obese children
  • Appropriate motivational techniques
  • How to adapt sessions for children with special needs

Part 2: Childhood Obesity Prevention and Intervention

What is obesity and what criteria are used to identify an obese child? How do they become that way? What can be done to prevent them from becoming that way? What can be done to cure them of the condition? Why are there so many obese children in the UK? All of these topics will be discussed in detail on this part of the course, in order to give learners a broad understanding about these issues.


Only the YMCA Awards Health-Related Exercise for Children part of the course requires students to undergo a formal assessment. This will be done using a one-hour multiple choice theory examination followed by a one-hour practical case study (that be completed by learners at their homes or a location chosen by them) and provided to an assessor in the form of a digital video recording.

Although we have a 98% passing rate, it sometimes happens that some students fail their exam. In this case, they can re-sit that exam for a small fee.

What certificates will I receive?

YMCA Awards Level 2 Certificate in Fitness Instructing - Exercise and Physical Activity for Children as well as two Discovery Learning certificates; one in Children’s Health Related Exercise and the other in Childhood Obesity Prevention.

Is this course recognised?

Yes, the awarding bodies for this course are Skills Active and YMCA Awards. This means this course will be recognized throughout the UK health, fitness and wellness industry and that any insurance policy you have with the Register of Exercise Professionals will cover you to work with clients using the knowledge and techniques taught in this course.

What support will I get?

While studying with Discovery Learning, you will have full access to our online interactive study platform that includes video tutorials, images, manuals, mock exam questions as well as other learning tools to aid you. You will also benefit from our Student Support team who are here to help via phone or email.

Booking Options

From £680

Full time and Part time courses available

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I’ve just completed my strength training and sports conditioning and I wanted to compliment the course leader on a very informative and enjoyable course.

Maralyn Wragg

Our Aftercare Promise

The Discovery Learning experience doesn’t necessarily have to stop once you finish your course. We can help you find employment, recommend trustworthy third parties for your business or we can assist with getting interviews.

We are always one phone call or email away if you need any further assistance with the development of your new fitness industry career.

0208 543 1017