Exercise Instructor for the Older Adult Training Courses

In 2001 Fit For Life introduced our Group Exercise Therapy programmes to nursing homes in Ireland. To the great credit of nursing home owners the immediate uptake all around the country was incredible and we are still delivering group sessions to many of those nursing homes to this day.

Over the year programmes have been constantly improving and diversifying using best practice research and the onsite practical knowledge and expertise of our therapists. As a result we now not only have the best practice group programmes but also programmes that actually logistically work in all types of settings and with all types of participant profile.

Our numerous programmes are suitable for very dependent residents in nursing homes right the way through to active independent older adults in the wider community.

It is important to note that all of our classes are progressive in nature regardless of what level they may be tailored to. In addition, if there’s one thing we aim to pass on, it is that anyone can participate in an exercise class regardless of their physical or cognitive capabilities. Of course the most important aspect to continued participation is that participants have fun while knowing that they are safely challenged to maintain or improve their independence.

Depending on your level of expertise and training we provide a foundation level group exercise therapy, advanced level and specific group programmes for those with Alzheimer’s or related dementias.


Our evidence-based Exercise Instructor Courses have been developed through our years of experience to enable attendees to upskill to deliver fun and effective group exercise classes. Whether you are a practicing Therapist, Nurse, Activities Coordinator or Health Care Assistant, we have a course tailored to you! Please see below for course content and information on upcoming courses.

To find out more and see upcoming course details please see our course booking page. You can also phone us on

01-2137915 or email info@fitforlife.ie for more information!

New Remote Interactive E-learning & Online Courses!

We deliver our highly regarded evidenced-based Exercise Instructor for the Older Adult courses live online! The innovative courses consist of a mixture of live sessions and self-directed online modules. We have updated the course content and are excited to enable you to complete our course from the comfort of your workplace or home! See below for a sneak peek of one of the online modules for the Exercise Instructor for the Older Adult course!

How does it work?
The innovative new courses are a mixture of interactive e-learning modules and live zoom group sessions. We send the participant an email with their login information. On the course day, they login to zoom for the live and interactive practical sessions. And when prompted, they login to the interactive e-learning platform - so they click on and work through engaging images and content at their own pace online. We then come back together for further live interactive practical zoom sessions. 

Participants will require a laptop or tablet (not a phone) and a good, stable internet connection to complete our courses. They will also need a quiet place to work from for the duration of the course, which can be from work or home!

Feedback from live online 2020 courses participants:

- 'Completing the course has given me the tools I need to confidently put together exercise sessions which are appropriate to the needs of the residents in our care'.

- 'The course was delivered in such a way that it gave me a greater understanding of the specific requirements our residents have. From utilising the skills, I learned I can expand on the variety of exercise options available to the residents'.

- 'The course is practical and thorough yet communicated in such a way that simplifies the objectives of each exercise. I would highly recommend this course to other health care workers'.

- 'I thoroughly enjoyed the course. I also prefer zoom as you do not have to travel out of your comfort zone. I feel very confident that what I have learned today is transferable and I am confident to use it in my day to day work'.

- 'Found the course very good – informative, easy to navigate from Zoom to e-learning and relaxed environment for everyone. Would highly recommend to others to complete'.

- 'Tricia was very clear with her instructions and built up my confidence to try teaching a class'.

Strength Training for the Older Adult Course - Activity Coordinators/Health Care Assistants


This fitness training course was developed for Activity Co-Ordinators, Healthcare Assistants or Home Carers who have completed our ‘Exercise Instructor for the Older Adult Course’. This course enables you to progress your knowledge and skills base to provide seated strength training classes for the older adults you work with!


Course outline:

  • Introduction

  • Skeletal muscle, aging & resistance exercise

  • Session structure: warm up, cool down & stretching (examples & revise teaching)

  • Resistance band exercises – assessment, techniques & all to practice teaching same

  • Other strength exercises – other types of equipment e.g. dumbbells

  • Exercise programming


Duration: 1-day course, 9.30am-5pm. Certified 7 CPD points.

Venue: Sandyford Clinic & training centre, and locations nationwide. Please see click here (insert link) for details of upcoming courses and to book online.

Cost: €125 per person (10% early booking discount; & discounts for group bookings).



  • You can deliver a Fit For Life quality strength training class, which has been developed over years of experience.

  • You can add more variety and physical challenge for the older adults participating in your exercise classes.

  • Experienced trainers who have expert knowledge on effective exercise delivery.

Exercise Instructor for Older Adults – Qualified Therapists


In 2018 the evidence has never been stronger in the value, importance and benefits of appropriately prescribed exercise for older adults at all levels of capabilities both physically and cognitively.


Since 2001 Fit For Life have been delivering progressive group and individual exercise programmes using best practice outcome measures to older adults in the community and long-term residential care. These programmes have been delivered by our multi-disciplined team of Chartered Physiotherapists, Physical Therapists, Certified Athletic Rehabilitation Therapists and Exercise Physiologists.


Our group exercise sessions have always been at the core of our services and have enabled us to interact with thousands of older adults on a weekly basis in an enjoyable, beneficial and cost-effective manner. If you enjoy working with older adults as much as we do, this three-day course will give you the knowledge and know how to design and deliver seated exercise programmes that will make a difference to older adults.


  • Introduction to FFL and course content

  • Review benefits of exercise and Physical Activity guidelines for older adults.

  • Introduction to group exercise – Safety, Structure, Location set up, Group profiles

  • Review of all components & equipment used in group session appropriate for older adults – Warm Up & Cool down, Stretching, Flexibility, Endurance, Resistance and posture exercises

  • Exercise guidelines for those living Alzheimer’s and related Dementia

  • Review common conditions & specific guidelines

  • Introduce functional tests and review exercise prescription guidelines and development and progression of exercise programmes.


Duration: 3 day course. Certified 24 CPD points.

Location: Fit For Life Training Centre, 2-3 Sandyford Village, Dublin 18; and locations nationwide.

Cost: €350 pp



  • Up to date and best practice knowledge in relation to the ageing and the positive effects of exercise prescription

  • In depth theory and practical demonstrations from experienced therapists who have expert knowledge on effective exercise delivery.

  • You have continued support from Fit For Life if your team need a refresher or upskill session on exercise delivery.

  • Certification from Fit For Life to deliver our specialised programmes

  • Credits towards becoming a Fit For Life Certified Therapist.


Exercise Therapy for Alzheimer’s and related Dementia


This one day course teaches the participants how to design and deliver group and individual exercise therapy programmes to persons with Alzheimer’s and related dementia. Fit For Life have developed programmes that engage the participants whereby a safe, enjoyable and productive group intervention can take place.

The aims of the group session is to primarily improve physical function, improve ability to perform ADLs and reduce the risk of falls. Other positive side effects of delivering an enjoyable group session are improved mood and reduced agitation. Important aspects of delivering exercise therapy to persons with Alzheimer’s and related dementia include recognising the cognitive ability of the participants and having the understanding that programmes must be flexible.


  • Overview of Alzheimer’s and related Dementia

  • Understanding the stages of dementia

  • Aims and goals for exercise intervention

  • Appropriate exercise and activities

  • Use of instructions

  • Behaviour that is challenging

  • Types of group programmes

  • Adaptations to programmes


Duration: 1 day course. Certified 8 CPD points.

Venue: The workshop can be completed in-house or at our Training Centre and Clinic.



  • Participants will have a basic understanding of the benefits of delivering an exercise programme to this population

  • Ability to deliver a Fit For Life Certified group exercise programme

  • Credits towards becoming a Fit For Life Certified therapist.


Home Exercise Programme delivery (activity therapist, healthcare assistant)


Depending on whether you have your own in-house physiotherapist, a private physiotherapist, or a Fit For Life physiotherapist on your team, having team members trained up to deliver their individual programmes is key to goal setting.

When a team member can deliver a personal exercise programme designed by your physiotherapist, there are elements your team can support. This allows the client to carry out, for example, daily prescribed exercises, motomed programmes and mobility programmes, which help to ensure the client gets an opportunity to meet their set goals.

Your team member will be educated on the programme support. It will always be an ongoing referral between physiotherapist and the home exercise programmer deliverer. The physiotherapist will create initial programmes and they will manage re-assessments and continuation or discharge at pre agreed timelines.


  • To understand the principles of exercise prescription for the older adult

  • To follow Home Exercise Programmes designed by a Physiotherapist or Exercise and Rehabilitation Therapist

  • Safe progression of a home Exercise programme

Duration: 1 day course. Certified 8 CPD points.

Venue: The workshop can be completed in-house or at training centre in Sandyford, Dublin.


  • To be able to assist someone to carry out a safe and progressive home exercise programme

  • Enhanced rehabilitation without direct therapist intervention and therefore less cost

  • Improved independence and a reduction in transfer or manual handling needs.


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