Seneca College's Fitness Leadership certificate has been developed to prepare students in careers requiring leadership to organize, develop and manage fitness and wellness programs for individuals and in corporate and commercial settings. This program reflects the guidelines for the training of fitness leaders established by existing advisory boards and professional organizations.

Students who complete this program may also wish to continue their studies in the Fitness and Health Promotion Diploma.

Information Session

New students are invited to attend an information session.

Career Opportunities

Our Fitness Leadership Certificate program trains its students both theoretically and practically to pursue certification exams for:

  • canfitpro
  • Canadian Personal Training Network (CPTN)
  • Canadian Fitness Education Services

Individuals wishing to pursue a full-time or part-time career in the fitness field in one or more of the following areas: fitness appraisal, exercise prescription, fitness class instruction, personal training, lifestyle counseling and fitness management. Students researching this field should note that employers may seek other additional certifications from agencies with accreditation standards.

Entry Requirements

  • It is strongly recommended that students should complete an Ontario Secondary School Diploma and have Grade 12 English and Grade 11 Biology. Those students who have not successfully completed Grade 12 English and Grade 11 Biology should consider upgrading their skills through the College/University prep program.


It is your responsibility to ensure that program requirements and course prerequisites as outlined are met. Prerequisites are included for your academic protection. Knowledge of the prerequisite material is assumed by your instructor and instruction will proceed accordingly. Students lacking prerequisites not only jeopardize their own ability to succeed but present unnecessary interruption. If you lack appropriate prerequisites (or Transfer Credit for the prerequisite course) you may be asked to withdraw or transfer to a more appropriate course with the risk of academic/financial penalty.

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Due to COVID-19, all Part-time Studies courses are being offered online until further notice, in one of the following two formats: online virtual classroom and online self-directed. Click Availability below to see current offerings.


Anatomy and Physiology I

This course explores the normal structure and function of the human body with an introduction to biochemistry, cell tissues, and body systems. Other units include an emphasis on neuroanatomy and neurophysiology, the musculoskeletal system, the cardiovascular system, the respiratory system, and thermoregulation.

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Group Exercise Leadership

In this Introductory practical course, students learn the skills required to plan and instruct a group exercise class. Topics covered include basic anatomy, class formats, use of music, choreography, cueing, monitoring techniques and successful instruction techniques. Students gain experience in the instruction of group strength training, flexibility training, and traditional group exercise. Students improve these skills through practice teaching sessions, and peer and instructor feedback and evaluations.
Note: FHP103 has replaced FDV 101. FDV 101 will be accepted towards the Certificate.

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This course serves as an introduction to human nutrition. A review of basic dietary recommendations and needs will be followed by applied topics in nutrition. Topics will also include the impact of age, illness, physical activity and social attitudes on food and eating behaviours. Issues including food supply, safety and counseling will also be discussed.

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Exercise Physiology and Life Diseases

In this course, students examine the various responses and adaptations that occur to the systems of the body as it is exposed to exercise stress of varying intensity, duration and frequency. Special emphasis will be placed on the child and youth as well as the aging population as well as the exploration of Sedentary physiology.

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Fitness Assessment I

This course introduces students to the Canadian Society for Exercise Physiology: Physical Activity Training for Health (CSEP-PATH) protocol. Students will utilize and practice CSEP-PATH comprehensive and evidence-based assessment in a laboratory setting. This course will explore various components of fitness assessments and methodologies- such as anthropometrics, submaximal cardiorespiratory capacity, muscular strength/ endurance, flexibility, balance, and power. In addition, pre-and post-exercise measurements of blood pressure and heart rate will be investigated and practiced. Special topics in health-related research will be included.

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Exercise Prescription

In this course, students acquire practical skills and examine theoretical approaches in exercise prescription to help students effectively and safely design and execute exercise programs. Students practice exercise technique and personal training skills in weekly laboratory sessions. The course includes analysis and application in the following areas: The principles of training, exercise monitoring, correct exercise and spotting technique and program design for cardiorespiratory fitness, muscular strength and endurance, and flexibility.

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Exercise Counselling

In this course students examine counseling skills and the importance of communication and the communication process. Students also identify various factors which influence exercise adherence. Throughout the course students will be able to assist and empower an individual or a group for a healthy behavior change.

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Placement Internship

The Fitness and Health Promotion placement internship course is composed of a work-integrated learning experience (placement/internship), where a minimum of 80 hours of practical experience is expected to be completed in a professional setting in the fitness/wellness industry, combined with a weekly classroom component. Information about the students' placement experiences are shared, discussed, and analyzed in the classroom, and verbal discussions and reflection journals are used during the in-class sessions. The course encourages students to integrate academic learning with the realities of the fitness and health promotion workplace. The internship/placement encourages application of the skills and knowledge from across the program while applying professional standards in the corporate, municipal or commercial fitness health and promotion career settings.

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*FHP407 - complete as the last course in the program - instructor will check prerequisites on the first class.

Field Placement

Students must register for fieldwork practice upon completion of the seven core courses.

The student may determine where they would like complete do their field placement based upon approval from the field placement supervisor. If the student does not have a field placement in mind, then the field placement supervisor may give the student recommended facilities to approach for field work. The field placement involves 80 hours of placement and evaluation of the student by their supervisor, along with a student report which is submitted at the end of the placement to the field placement supervisor. Students must have completed all program courses before registering in the field placement. The field placement supervisor will check the prerequisites on the first day of class. Anyone who has not completed all the required pre-requisites will be asked to withdraw from field placement.

Program Outcomes

Graduates of the Fitness Leadership Certificate will be able to:

  • Recognize various lifestyle habits and their effects on the health and fitness level of an individual.
  • Assess clients' fitness needs.
  • Administer a number of components from popular fitness testing protocols.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of various concepts of anatomy, kinesiology and exercise physiology and apply them to fitness activities.
  • Discuss the relationship between regular participation in physical fitness and health.
  • Design effective fitness programs using various exercise techniques.
  • Evaluate the physiological effects of the exercise program on the client.
  • Identify and understand how to prevent common fitness based injuries.
  • Identify, analyze and utilize effective leadership and communication skills in the fitness setting.
  • Incorporate a variety of fitness resources in the provision of a fitness program.

Credit for Prior Learning

Prior Learning Assessment

Earn college credits for what you already know!
Prior Learning Assessment is a method of assessing and recognizing learning that is equal to college level learning, but has been gained outside a traditional classroom (through work experience, volunteering, outside study, etc.). If you can prove that the knowledge you have gained meets the outcomes of a Seneca course, then credit will be awarded.

How does the PLA process work?
Prior Learning is demonstrated through a "challenge" process. The process measures learning through a variety of methods which may include tests, portfolio assessment, interviews, demonstrations, essays, and work samples. The method used will be determined in consultation with a Program Coordinator.
For more information and to determine if you are eligible for PLA, please call the Program Coordinator.

The process may take from 6 to 8 weeks.

Note: Not all courses can be challenged. For more information go to PLA website or contact your Program Coordinator.

Transfer Credit

Many students who enter Seneca College will have earned academic credits in post-secondary educational institutions which they may be able to apply toward completion of a Seneca College program.

Requests for Transfer Credit must be for a specific course and must be accompanied by an official transcript and course outline. A minimum grade of "C" (60 percent) is generally required for a course to be considered for Transfer Credit.

Download a Transfer Credit Request form. An official copy of your transcript and applicable detailed course outlines should be attached and submitted. Please note it may take 4 to 6 weeks for a Transfer Credit decision.

More Information

Please visit the Office of the Registrar.


When you meet all program requirements and become eligible for a certificate, diploma, or degree, you must inform the Registrar by completing a Graduation Application form and paying the graduation and alumni fee. Certificates, diplomas, and applied degrees are issued twice a year in the Fall (October) and Spring (June).

For further information including deadlines and fees, please visit the  Convocation website or contact the Convocation Office at 416-491-5050 ext. 77461.

Minimum Performance for Graduation

A student will be eligible to graduate from a certificate, diploma, advanced diploma or graduate certificate program if they have achieved a minimum graduating GPA of 2.0.

A student will be eligible to graduate from a degree program if they have achieved a minimum graduating GPA of 2.5, which includes a minimum GPA of 2.5 in the courses in their main field of study and a minimum GPA of 2.0 in breadth courses.

Residency Requirements

A Faculty of Seneca College may recommended a student for a certificate, diploma or degree only after the student has earned a minimum of twenty-five percent of the credit for that program at Seneca.


Alanna Tasios

It started as a desire to keep health and fitness as part of her life. Where her journey led her, Alanna never would have imagined.


When you?ve played hockey for most of your life, there is a part of you that will always be interested in health and fitness. After my playing days were behind me, I realized that it was still an important part of my life, and knew that this was a career path I wanted to pursue. And so I enrolled in the Health and Fitness Leadership program at Seneca."My teachers at Seneca were instrumental in helping me turn what I loved to do into a career path I never thought possible. They showed me how to trust myself, how to let my passion and my instincts guide me in the right direction for my career and my life."


My experience at Seneca opened many doors. It led me to opportunities in the field of sports medicine, including the chance to work in the Bahamas with a sports medicine doctor. I was working with people who had sports backgrounds just like mine, but who were now dealing with injuries or rehabbing to get back to playing. And I saw in many of these people – especially women – so much fear and doubt in their own abilities. That was when I realized I wanted to make a change: I wanted to help women to be their best self.


Since then I have gone on to start my own business as a certified Integrative Health and Lifestyle Coach. I work with women who are looking to make big changes in their lives but don?t have the support to do so. Whether it has to do with their relationships, their careers, their spirituality or their physical fitness and nutrition, I help women set the goals to make those changes, and provide them with the guidance they need along the way. I?ve also helped launch On The Run Meals, an organic meal prep and delivery business. My position as Vice President of Operations helps me interact with all clients on a deeper level by integrating my health coaching."Changing lives is so rewarding. Watching people get out there and get what they deserve, it feels so great to know that I was a part of that."

Program Contacts

Annie Kirkham
Program Assistant
416-491-5050 ext.22536

Barbara Pimenoff
Program Coordinator
416-491-5050 ext.24019

For more information about this program, fill out the following form.

Information Session

New students are invited to attend an information session.