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If you’re a current or ex-member of the UK forces, you can apply for funding through ELCAS and become a qualified personal trainer with us.

The Enhanced Learning Credits Scheme (ELC) was designed by the Ministry of Defence to enable Armed Forces personnel to retrain and start a new career once they leave the military.

The scheme is open to personnel from the Army, Navy and Air Force and the financial assistance you could receive increases with number of years served. Ex-military personnel receive money up-front from the MOD which can be used to pay for or contribute to personal training or other courses from specific ELCAS providers.

To get in on the action and get yourself on the path towards your new personal training career, you will need to speak to personal trainer course providers that are recognised by ELCAS (like we are), check their qualifications are recognised nationally at level 3 or higher on the National Qualifications Framework (like ours are) and level Six or above on the Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework (like ours are). From there you follow the process detailed below and enrol on your personal training course.

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Here’s a breakdown on how to access ELCAS and what to look out for:

  • ELC training providers are selected and supervised by the Enhanced Learning Credits Administration Service, ELCAS. An ELC application is managed through ELCAS
  • You need to be a scheme member before you can apply for funding. To register, speak to your local Individual Education and Resettlement office, IERO. They will be able to give you access to the ELCAS members page.
  • Find out more details about your IERO here
  • Any funding will come as a single payment to use towards the course fee. The amount of funding you can access depends on your years of service.
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Claiming access to ELCAS as ex-military

There are a few steps to follow if you are ex-military to unlock funding-

  • Find the course you are interested in and call the provider. It’s always good to get more information on any course and you can verify their ELCAS status. Take the time to ask the questions you want answered, find out all the details you can and make an informed choice.
  • You’ll need to show your last day of service if you want to access ELCAS funding for your chosen course. You can do this with a copy of your P45 or a document from your regiment with leaving date confirmation.
  • You will be asked for proof of address, so make sure you have a utility bill or two to hand.
  • Once you’ve settled on your course and provided all the relevant documents, you can speak to ELCAS. Send ELCAS the details of your personal training course or fitness qualification; Company name, qualification name and details, level of qualification and duration of the course.

After completing the above steps, you should receive your funding and will be able to join the course of your choice and begin learning.

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Claiming access to ELCAS as current serving military

As with former serving personnel, you must do your research on the course and the provider first. Once you have done your research, follow the steps highlighted earlier; contact your IERO, login in to ELCAS and you’ll be ready to apply for ELC funding.
As you are still serving in the armed forces, you are entitled to two tiers of funding.

Tier one Grants you up to: £1000
You can access this if you have served for less than eight years.
Tier two covers up to: £2000 per claim instalment.
This is unlocked if you have served for eight years or more.

Your time in service is measured from 01 April 2000. You can make three ELC claims in total, one claim per financial year. For example, if you have served for ten years since April 1st 2000, you can make a total of three claims of £2,000 over a three year period.

One last thing to remember, you must apply for funding 25 days before the course start date!

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Funding overview

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Find out more

For more information on our courses head here

If you want to talk about our personal training courses, you can drop us an email or give us a call.

0207 2929 140   [email protected]

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Frequently asked questions

How are the courses delivered?

Once you have enrolled on your course you will have access to the online material. You can access your material, book on to assessment days, optional training days and clinics via the Student Desktop accessed through the website.

The TRAINFITNESS App means you can study on the go.

With the Distance study option, you will work through the online material including workbook and portfolios and complete 20 hours of practicum (observing a personal trainer in a commercial fitness facility) You will then book onto a scheduled assessment day where you will perform the relevant assessment and hand in completed portfolios.

Should you choose to study a Part Time or Full-Time personal training course, you will complete the online course material and specific sections of the portfolio, you’ll then book onto and attend clinics. You’ll be expected to hand in completed portfolios at most clinics.

However, you choose to study your personal trainer course, you will still receive the same certificate upon completion. To request a certificate, you must complete all the course requirements. Course requirements include the online course material and clinics/assessment days.

As part of the course fee, a printable PDF copy of the portfolios, workbook and static online course material is included. You can print directly from the Student Desktop or you can purchase a printed copy from our website for an additional fee.

What do I need to attend?

This depends on the course you have chosen. If you’ve selected a distance course, you’ll need to book onto and then attend scheduled assessment days at our venues. At assessment days you will sit theory and practical assessments. With the Distance option you will also need to bring a client with you for the practical elements. If you can’t make the scheduled assessment days, you can send a video for some of the practical assessments.

There are conditions and additional fees for video assessments. Please contact Learner Support for details, 0207 2929 140

To perform any Gym Instructor assessments, you must complete the online material first. To perform any Personal Trainer assessments, you must also complete all the online material. If you have selected Specialist or Master Diplomas, you must complete all the online material before performing any of the specialist unit assessments.

Practitioner Diploma = 4 scheduled assessment days

Specialist Diploma = 7 scheduled assessment days*

Master Diploma = 7 scheduled assessment days*


If you have selected any of our part time courses; Saturday, Sunday or Evenings, you will need to book onto scheduled clinics at our personal training course venues.

Part Time Saturday courses will require you to book onto and attend 11-day or 15-day clinics, which usually run on consecutive Saturdays. If you have selected Part Time Sunday courses you will book onto and attend 11-day or 15-day clinics, which usually run on consecutive Sundays.

Should you select Part Time Evening, you will book onto and attend 11-week or 15-week clinics, which usually run on consecutive Monday and Tuesday evenings.

The relevant training and assessments will be completed on these clinic days and you’ll hand in your portfolios on these days too.

Practitioner Diploma = 11 scheduled Saturdays (Part Time Saturdays option), Sundays (Part Time Sundays option) or weeks (Part Time Evenings option)

Specialist Diploma = 15 scheduled Saturdays (Part Time Saturdays option), Sundays (Part Time Sundays option) or weeks (Part Time Evenings option)*

Master Diploma = 15 scheduled Saturdays (Part Time Saturdays option), Sundays (Part Time Sundays option) or weeks (Part Time Evenings option)*.


If you’ve chosen a Full Time Personal Training course you’ll need to book onto and attend the relevant clinic days at one of our venues Monday-Friday.

Here you will perform the relevant training and assessments whilst completing and then handing in your portfolio*. All the online material and specific sections of the portfolio must be completed before completing a full time clinic.

Practitioner Diploma = 11 day

Specialist Diploma = 15 days*

Master Diploma = 15 days*

*The Sports Conditioning; Obesity and Diabetes Management; and Life Coaching units each include a portfolio as the assessment. If any of these units are included in the course you enrol on (e.g. Gym Instructor and Personal Trainer Master Diploma), you will complete the portfolio as home study and submit a copy of it to us for marking.
What support is available during the course?
Learner Support – Our learner support team are dedicated to helping you through your studies, on hand to answer your questions and queries. You can reach the team Monday to Friday 8am-8pm and Saturday-Sunday 11 am-4pm GMT, excluding Bank Holidays and scheduled office closures. Learner support provide additional help and reassurance to the support you receive from your tutors.
eClasses – Your course includes optional eClasses that can help your preparations for theory assessments. There is an additional charge for eClasses as they are an optional extra and not a requirement for course completion. Once enrolled on an eClass you can revisit it as many times as you like/need. To enrol on an eClass, login to your web-based Student Discount and head to Paperwork & Portfolios. From there you click Enrol and you can select your eClass.
Feedback Service – If you’ve chosen a Distance Study personal training course, you will be able to send us a video of what you plan to do for your practical assessment and what you are planning on submitting as your portfolio. Once we have received this, one of our assessors will arrange to contact you to provide feedback. Videos need to be submitted at least two weeks before the due date of the assessment or submission date of the portfolio. There are additional fees for this service.
Optional Training Day – Your Distance Study personal trainer course comes with the option of additional help with the practical elements of the course. Our optional training days allow you to book on to and attend practical days at our venues around the country. These days give you face-to-face training with our tutors in a gym environment. The training day will also cover the Practicum aspect of the course. There are additional fees for this service.
What are the pre-requisites?

No prior qualifications are required for our personal training courses.

You will need a basic level of Maths and English to understand the content.

You don’t need to be a fitness expert to complete our personal trainer course, however a basic understanding of the gym environment and a degree of physical fitness is necessary.

Should you already have your Level 2 Gym Instructor qualification, you may be exempt from certain sections of the course. To find out more about this, please contact us on 0207 2929 140