Specialist Practitioner Course
The Specialist Practitioner Course is the latest Level 4 offering for exercise professionals who are at the top of their game, and want to achieve ‘Special Practitioner’ status.
In addition to a Level 3 Diploma in Exercise Referral the qualification offers the choice of direction. Students can opt for either the Level 4 Low Back Pain or Obesity & Diabetes courses. The bespoke nature of this course enables students to choose the direction of the specialist qualification. As a result they can target their expertise towards the specific needs of their clients.
On successful completion, students will be able to treat clients who have been referred by a GP. These ‘Exercise Referrals’ lay the foundation for a career path dedicated to a specialist area. Both options – Low Back Pain or Obesity and Diabetes – open the door to a rewarding future as a Specialist Practitioner.
The Specialist Practitioner Diploma offers an excellent chance for you to refine your personal training services and excel in your field.
What course materials will I receive for the Specialist Practitioner course?
You will receive a bespoke Exercise Referral manual and an Active IQ Low Back Pain or Obesity and Diabetes manual.
If you do not hold a Personal Trainer qualification, in order to complete the Anatomy and Physiology and Nutrition units, you’ll also be able to access all the learning materials for this course via our unique online learning portal, a virtual classroom which guides you, section by section, through your course. All the facts and information you require are clearly presented to make learning as easy and enjoyable as possible, there’s even a quiz at the end of each section to test yourself.
What will I learn on the Specialist Practitioner course?
This course is extremely varied, and covers an excellent selection of topics that will help personal trainers to develop their skill set and improve their career prospects.
This diploma is split into two modules:
Module 1: Level 3 Exercise Referral Specialist
- Pathophysiology, treatment and special considerations for:
- Cardiovascular conditions: Atherosclerosis, hypertension, high cholesterol,
- Mobility related conditions: Osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoporosis, lordosis, kyphosis, scoliosis, spondylosis (spinal arthritis) joint replacement
- Mental health conditions: Anxiety, stress and depression
- Other conditions: obesity, diabetes type 1 & 2, asthma, COPD (chronic bronchitis and emphysema)
- Related exercise benefits and implications
Module 2: Level 4 Low Back Pain Specialist
- Human anatomy, and biomechanics of the spine and lower back.
- National Guidelines for Management of Low Back Pain
- Activity/ Inactivity in the prevention and Management of Low Back Pain
- Epidemiology of Low Back Pain
- Co-morbidities/ medications and their exercise considerations
- Psychological/ sociological impact of Low Back Pain
- Screening/ Assessment techniques for Low Back Pain
- Planning/ delivering appropriate exercise sessions
Module 2: Level 4 Obesity and Diabetes Specialist
- Prevalence and classification of obesity and diabetes
- Hormonal considerations of obesity and diabetes
- Genetic influences of obesity and diabetes
- Development and pathophysiology of obesity and diabetes
- How to administer 7-site skinfold assessment
- Historical evidence surrounding obesity
- Introduction to metabolic syndrome
- Exercise guidelines and precautions
- Planning and delivering physical activity and nutritional strategies for obesity and diabetes
- Causes and the psychological impact of the conditions
How is the Specialist Practitioner course delivered?
A telephone support tutor will help you plan and agree your submission dates for your home study work. Telephone appointments will be arranged so we can keep in close contact with you to give you specific feedback on your learning needs.
To achieve the Specialist Practitioner Diploma you will be required to complete the Exercise Referral course followed by your choice of Level 4 qualification.
The Exercise Referral course will require you to complete a series of home study units prior to attending a two-day practical course attendance. Here you will learn the practical and theoretical skills behind programme design and implementation. You will then have six weeks to complete a case study and submit this for assessment prior to attending a third day for your practical assessment.
Choose the Low Back Pain course and you will then complete assignments prior to attending a 2 day practical and theoretical course delivery followed by a period of 8 weeks to complete a case study prior to returning for a 1 day practical assessment.
Choose Obesity and Diabetes and you will then attend a 2-day course comprising of theory and practical workshops. After the course you will have 6 weeks to prepare a hypothetical case study before returning for a 1-day practical assessment.
Course attendance will be at your choice of Focus Training centres throughout the UK. Check course availability
How will I be assessed for the Specialist Practitioner course?
Dependent on the modules you select, the course structure will vary in accordance to requirements. However, you will be expected to complete the following:
- Home study worksheets
- Multiple choice theory exams (only applies if you haven’t completed the level 3 Personal Trainer qualification, 2011 onwards)
- Case studies
- Practical assessments
How do I submit my Specialist Practitioner coursework?
You need to submit your home-study units either electronically or you could choose to complete it hand written if you prefer.
If you have any special learning needs for this course please do not hesitate to discuss them with our advisers, we will do as much as is practicable to assist.